Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

OBAMA by Brian Abrams
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 10, 2018

"An entertaining, enlightening look at an administration that was never dull."
An oral biography of the Barack Obama administration, culled from interviews conducted between May 2016 and October 2017. Read full book review >
FLASH by Christopher Bonanos
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 5, 2018

"In this deeply researched (though lightly worn) and compelling portrait, Bonanos captures all sides of an artist in spite of himself."
A fine-grained close-up of the lensman who lit up New York City, both low-life and high-. Read full book review >

EMPRESS by Ruby Lal
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 3, 2018

"A page-turning, eye-opening biography that shatters our impressions of India as established by the British Raj."
Lal (South Asian History/Emory Univ.; Coming of Age in Nineteenth-Century India: The Girl-Child and the Art of Playfulness, 2013, etc.) shines a light on Nur Jahan (1577-1645), who ruled as co-sovereign in the Mughal court, taking her husband's place without actually usurping him. Read full book review >
BARONS OF THE SEA by Steven Ujifusa
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 17, 2018

"A vivid account of larger-than-life if not always attractive characters and a technological marvel that briefly captivated the Victorian world."
Fifty years before the robber barons, immense fortunes in the young United States flowed to great shipping firms, a brutal, sometimes lucrative, and technologically creative enterprise brilliantly chronicled by naval historian Ujifusa (A Man and His Ship: America's Greatest Naval Architect and His Quest to Build the S.S. United States, 2012). Read full book review >
THOSE WILD WYNDHAMS by Claudia Renton
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 7, 2018

"A sparkling family portrait and riveting history."
An elite family faces a vastly changing nation. Read full book review >

THE FIGHTERS by C.J. Chivers
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 14, 2018

"Given his background, Chivers certainly did not set out to write a book emphasizing the foolishness of American actions in Afghanistan and Iraq. But that is the story that emerged from his painstaking, courageous reporting, and readers will be thankful for his work."
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times journalist and former Marine Corps infantry officer Chivers (The Gun, 2010, etc.) offers a chilling account of failed American invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq through the searing experiences of six fighters. Read full book review >
DRIVEN by Melissa Stephenson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 24, 2018

"Raw, tender, and uniquely envisioned."
A debut memoir that explores a woman's relationship with her family and dead brother through the cars that came into their lives. Read full book review >
THE PRISON LETTERS OF NELSON MANDELA by Nelson Mandela
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 10, 2018

"A valuable contribution to our understanding of one of history's most vital figures."
An epistolary memoir of Nelson Mandela's prison years. Read full book review >
IMPLOSION by Elizabeth W. Garber
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 12, 2018

"An alternately wistful and searing exploration of a troubled legacy."
A daughter's vibrant relationship with her father decays into warfare and abuse in this coming-of-age memoir. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 5, 2018

"An impossible-to-put-down page-turner revealing the Mafia makeup and three courageous women who bore witness to save others."
The highly compelling story of the women who dared to break omertà, the Mafia code of silence. Read full book review >
FOR SINGLE MOTHERS WORKING AS TRAIN CONDUCTORS by Laura Esther Wolfson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 1, 2018

"An impressive literary debut."
A translator's command of language belatedly finds her translating her own life. Read full book review >
TANGO LESSONS by Meghan Flaherty
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 19, 2018

"A vibrantly intelligent reading pleasure."
An essayist's debut memoir of how a passion for tango dancing transformed her life. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >