Friday, June 3, 2011

New Biographies

Biography is a wonderful way to learn about history on a micro level. Too often history can feel remote but biographies present the past in a way that make things come to life. When people read about the challenges that historical figures’ faced, in addition to their accomplishments, they come to know these figures as more human. Here are some of the latest additions to the biography collection.

Talty, Stephan. Escape from the land of snows: the young Dalai Lama's harrowing flight to freedom and the making of a spiritual hero. New York: Crown Publishers, 2011.

Drawing from written eyewitness accounts and interviews with survivors, Talty (The Illustrious Dead) describes the events in 1959 that allowed the Dali Lama to flee Tibet for India.

Dubus, Andre. Townie: a memoir. New York: W.W. Norton, 2011.

Tells the story of the hard scrabble upbringing of Andre Dubus, the author of House of Sand and Fog, and how he managed to persevere and survive his childhood after his father left the family at age 10.

Fey, Tina. Bossypants. New York: Little, Brown, 2011.

From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon, comedian Tina Fey reveals all, and proves that you're no one until someone calls you bossy.

Judd, Ashley and Vollers, Maryanne. All that is bitter & sweet: a memoir. 1st ed. New York: Ballantine Books, 2011.

Using her personal journal entries, Ashley Judd creates a highly personal and powerful memoir about change, hope, and human transformation.

Marable, Manning. Malcolm X: a life of reinvention. New York: Viking, 2011.

An authoritative biography of Malcolm X draws on new research to trace his life from his troubled youth through his involvement in the Nation of Islam, his activism in the world of Black Nationalism, and his assassination.

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