Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 24, 2015

"A prescient memoir about one woman's emotional triumph over war and religious persecution."
Debut author Softic shares her family's moving ordeal in war-torn Bosnia-Herzegovina in a meditation on the sustaining power of faith. Read full book review >
Who Am I? by Megan Cyrulewski
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 17, 2014

"While providing some insights into mental illness and abuse, this work becomes too mired in the maneuvers of a father to engage a broad readership."
A debut memoir offers a straightforward account of an emotionally abusive marriage. Read full book review >

BIRTH OF A DREAM WEAVER by Ngugi wa Thiong’o
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 4, 2016

"A writer's coming-of-age tale featuring an artistic mix of pride and humility."
The celebrated African novelist, playwright, and activist, born in Kenya in 1938, revisits the early experiences that convinced him he was a writer. Read full book review >
The Bucket List Chronicle by Dr. U
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 15, 2016

"A charming and amusing account of one man's fresh experiences."
A debut memoir documents a year of new adventures. Read full book review >
Office Hours by H.N. Hirsch
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 4, 2016

"A well-crafted, wistful memoir of life in higher education.
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Hirsch (The Enigma of Felix Frankfurter, 2014 etc.) discusses his long career in the shifting culture of academia in this debut memoir.Read full book review >

Baby Steps by John Rollo
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 13, 2016

"Rollo spins a truly nightmarish medical ordeal into a life-affirming exercise in resilience, optimism, and eternal gratitude."
An inspired, epistolary debut memoir chronicling an amputee's months of rehabilitation and recovery. Read full book review >
PRESTO! by Penn Jillette
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 2, 2016

"A sometimes-funny book that should be taken with a tablespoon of salt."
The acclaimed, outspoken magician delivers a "book about extreme personal lifestyle changes, written by a…juggler whose only higher education was Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College." Read full book review >
Memories from a War by Aloysius Pappert
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 22, 2016

"An arresting and unusual portal into the mind of a fighter in the Nazi forces."
A debut memoir chronicles a German soldier's travails during World War II. Read full book review >
DIE YOUNG WITH ME by Rob Rufus
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"By refusing to abandon hope, easy though it would have been to do so, Rufus' memoir makes a valuable contribution to the literature of healing and recovery. It's a good piece of rock writing, too, with 'one hell of a soundtrack.'"
Buy a drum kit. Buy a guitar. Get cancer. It's not the usual rock 'n' roll trajectory. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 4, 2016

"Levy's spirited history is nothing less than a love letter to Rome's luxurious, sensational past."
A cultural history reveals an effervescent decade of riches in postwar Rome. Read full book review >
STALIN'S ENGLISHMAN by Andrew Lownie
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 4, 2016

"A crack biography of a man who was a preposterous enigma."
A biography of "the most complex and enigmatic of the Cambridge Spies," a group of men recruited during the 1930s to spy for the Soviet Union. Read full book review >
GRAND HOTEL ABYSS by Stuart Jeffries
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A rich, intellectually meaty history."
Life inside the 20th-century's reigning citadel of pessimism, as told through the lives and (often conflicting) philosophies of its key thinkers. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Morgan Matson
July 25, 2016

From Morgan Matson, the bestselling author of Since You’ve Been Gone, comes The Unexplained Everything, a feel-good YA novel of friendship, finding yourself, and all the joys in life that happen while you’re busy making other plans. Andie has a plan. And she always sticks to her plan. Future? A top-tier medical school. Dad? Avoid him as much as possible (which isn’t that hard considering he’s a Congressman and he’s never around). Friends? Palmer, Bri, and Toby—pretty much the most awesome people on the planet, who needs anyone else? Relationships? No one’s worth more than three weeks. So it’s no surprise that Andie’s got her summer all planned out too. Until a political scandal costs Andie her summer pre-med internship, and lands both she and Dad back in the same house together for the first time in years. Suddenly she’s doing things that aren’t Andie at all. “Romance fans will find plenty to enjoy, as Andie gradually lets down her guard and risks the messy and unpredictable wonder of first love,” our reviewer writes. “A novel best read on a lazy summer day with sand between the toes.” View video >