Wednesday, March 20, 2013

People... People Who Read People

Biography and Memoir
If you are sometimes fascinated with famous people in history, sports, literature, or popular culture -- or are always up for reading a compelling memoir -- here's a few short lists of selections worth considering.

Hello, Sports Fans!
Terry 'Tito' Francona led the 2004 Red Sox to the team's first World Series victory since 1918. Mike  Piazza's autobiography endured more than a little criticism over on Baseball Nation. "Big Bad Bruin" Derek 'Turk' Sanderson's autobiography is bound for big-screen movie treatment. Retired Tennessee Vols coach Pat Summitt's autobiography is also available, just in time for NCAA tournament season, aka March Madness.

Singers, Songwriters, Actors, Gurus
From serious to dishy, read the latest on Barbra Streisand, Rita Moreno, Penny Marshall, Andrew McCarthyBruce Lee [video], Valerie HarperDennis HopperLeonard Cohen, or Clive Davis.

Writing Lives
Buzz has it that Syliva Plath's semi-autobiographical classic, The Bell Jar, will be movie-converted soon. The greater buzz relates to a new book cover, created in line with the 50th anniversary of the book's publication. Chuckles for the mashups. Read about Plath's life in several great books.

Louisa May Alcott devotees will find much to enjoy in Marmee & Louisa by Eve LaPlante. Pair this one with Eden's Outcasts by John Matteson.

Lastly, if you don't know much about celebrated and controversial French author George Sand, or her oh-so notorious 19th century love life, spend a little page time with The Last Love of George Sand.

In My Life
Each of these memoirs might find a place on your must-read list.

The Backyard Parables by Margaret Roach (reflections on gardening)
Chanel Bonfire by Wendy Lawless (dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship)
Dwarf : a Memoir by Tiffanie DiDonato ("adapting to a world when it won't adapt to you.."
The Heavy : a Mother, a Daughter, a Diet -- a Memoir by Dara-Lynn Weiss (bookend to Battle Hymn of a Tiger Mother)
Her : a Memoir by Christa Parravani (achingly brilliant memoir of enduring love, loss, and identical twins)
Raising Cubby : a Father and Son's Adventures with Asperger's, Trains, Tractors, and High Explosives by John Elder Robison (Aspergian father raising his Aspergian son)
Shouting Won't Help : Why I - and 50 Million Other Americans - Can't Hear You by Katherine Bouton (a personal and public discussion of hearing loss)
A Still Point of the Turning World by Emily Rapp (emotionally fearless and loving reflections on raising a little boy with a fatal disorder)
Still Points North by Leigh Newman (growing up in the wilds of Alaska)
The Ordinary Acrobat : a Journey Into the Wondrous World of the Circus, Past and Present by Duncan Wall (from Ringling Brothers to Cirque du Soleil, join the circus with a turn of a page)