Memoir

New Life, New Instructions

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New Life, No Instructions Cover Image
$23.00
ISBN: 9781400069545
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Published: Random House - April 1st, 2014

Caldwell gives us another installment of memoir, here confronting her physical deterioration resulting from her childhood polio and the grief of yet another personal loss, this time the death of her mother. But passage through these crises brings unexpected transformations. What makes her prose so compelling is the depth of feeling she brings to her clear-eyed observations of self.

Dale


Hyperbole and a Half

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Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781451666175
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Gallery Books - October 29th, 2013

For fans of the wildly popular blog of the same name, this book needs no introduction. For ones that haven't heard of it, take notice! Alie Brosh combines naive art with an expert eye for perspective and expression, with hilarious, hyper-personal observations.  There may be many blogs-cum-books out there, but this is certainly the most successful this year.

Jill


My Mistake

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My Mistake Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780547794235
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - November 19th, 2013

This book had me at the introduction and never let me down.  A delightful memoir of Menaker's years fact checking at The New Yorker and as an editor at Random House, this book could let you check off a lot of names on your gift giving list.  Honest, self-effacing and humorous-a great read!


Anne


Looking for Palestine

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Looking for Palestine: Growing Up Confused in an Arab-American Family Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9781594487088
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Published: Riverhead Books - August 1st, 2013

Najla Said grew up as a Jew on Manhattan's Upper West Side - except she wasn't. Her father, Edward Said, was the preeminent Palestinian intellectual of his time and her living room was filled with people like Noam Chomsky and William Buckley. She's a performance artist, which clearly comes through in this memoir about a childhood of confused identity that finally, with her own adulthood and her father's death, leads to her forging her own views of the ideological conflict with which he was so deeply involved. (It also makes you want to go back and read, or re-read, Edward Said's Orientalism.)

David


An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth

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An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth: What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780316253017
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Published: Little, Brown and Company - October 29th, 2013

Only one man has performed David Bowie's "Space Oddity" in space -- and then he returned to earth and wrote a book. If you enjoyed Commander Hadfield's videos and pictures during his stay on the International Space Station, you'll love his take space travel, farm life, and being prepared for anything.

Sarah


The Orchard

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The Orchard: A Memoir Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780553378597
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dial Press Trade Paperback - January 1st, 1997

Down the end of Argilla Road in Ipswich stand the remains of the Robertson family’s orchard; you pass it on the way to Crane Beach. During the Great Depression, Adele Robertson single-handedly strived to keep the family business going. Her struggle reflects the country’s story in those hard years.

Robin


One and Only

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One and Only: The Untold Story of on the Road and Luanne Henderson, the Woman Who Started Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady on Their Jou Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781573449557
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Published: Viva Editions - April 2nd, 2013

Carolyn Cassady, Edie Parker, Joyce Johnson and other women in the Beat sphere have published memoirs, but never Lu Anne Henderson, Dean Moriarty's girl Marylou in On the Road. Kerouac biographer Nicosia (Memory Babe) interviewed Lu Anne towards the end of her life and together with her daughter has built a frankly astonishing narrative portrait and Beat myth addition/corrective.

Gary


I Await the Devil's Coming

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I Await the Devil's Coming (Neversink) Cover Image
By Mary MacLane, Jessa Crispin (Introduction by)
$16.00
ISBN: 9781612191942
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Published: Melville House - March 19th, 2013

Equal parts Nietzsche, Emma Goldman, Oscar Wilde, and Dickinson/Whitman, Mary MacLane’s portrait of herself is an exuberant, daring, and brilliant book from a vibrant intellect. MacLane’s passion and philosophy might  raise a few contemporary eyebrows, but that she wrote this book when she was 19 years old in 1901 is just astonishing. 2013 might be the year this forgotten talent gets her due.

Josh


My Animals and Other Family

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$26.95
ISBN: 9781594205620
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Published: Penguin Press - April 18th, 2013

British sports broadcaster and national treasure, Balding, leads us on a full gallop through the whole range of human emotions in this memoir of growing up in an usual household.  Her animals are mostly horses and dogs as her father trained racehorses for the Queen and she proves herself a skillful raconteur, spilling the beans on stories like time when she nearly hit Her Madge with a sausage.  Full of humor, self awareness and charm, I only hope a second volume picking up in 1990 is in the works.  


Susannah


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