General Question

SwanSwanHummingbird's avatar

Any (auto) biographies you can recommend?

Asked by SwanSwanHummingbird (1265 points ) February 10th, 2014
18 responses
“Great Question” (2 points )

It’s not really about the people, but what their lives reveal about humanity, the world, anything.

If you recommend it can you please tell me why I might like it?

Thanks.

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Answers

keobooks's avatar

The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Alex Haley is good. It’s an amazing look at a very controversial person.

Cruiser's avatar

Mark Twain’s autobiography.

SwanSwanHummingbird's avatar

I’ve read Malcolm X and have lots of stuff on Twain. How funny.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Cruiser I only read the first book, did you read the others? I didn’t like the arrangement much but I did finish it.

filmfann's avatar

M K Fischer’s book on Mahatma Gandhi.
Charles Chaplin’s Autobiography

ragingloli's avatar

Mein Kampf?

Pachy's avatar

I loved stage and film producer-actor John Houseman’s three-volume autobio. If you’re a lover of stage and film, this is a must-read. Jam-packed with incredible stories about people and events the like of which will never return.

Pachy (13298points )“Great Answer” (1points )
Mimishu1995's avatar

Since you are not specific about which form of biographies you want (books, movies…), I will recommend you a graphic novel. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, an Iranian woman. The book is technically Marjane’s biography, but I have the impression that its main focus is about various aspects of Iran from her childhood until now. Therefor it can serve as both a history book and a drama story. I have read it and I think it perfectly fits your question’s description.

jaytkay's avatar

I greatly enjoyed Isaac Newton by James Gleick .

The work he produced by just thinking is astounding. It’s hard to imagine that much brain power in one person.

Smitha's avatar

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
This is a well narrated book which opens up the illusive world of Japanese culture, the traditions of the mysterious world of the Geisha,tea ceremony etc. This is a must read if you if you like stories which span the lifetime of a character.

A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
In this book Bill Bryson takes us on an unforgettable journey on the Appalachian trail, but the only complaint I can find in this book is the lack of pictures. Travelogues must have photos, to make it appear more meaningful.
The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
A wonderful book depicting the different shades of World War-II written by a 13 year old girl.
Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
This is a very touching book. The poverty pictured in this book is truly heart wrenching; lack of food, infections, an alcoholic father, all these reminds me of the slums in India.

garydale's avatar

Any of Joseph Conrad’s four autobiographies.

GloPro's avatar

Here are 3 autobiographies that I enjoyed. I don’t know the titles, but I believe each only wrote one autobiography. Easy reads, interesting people. Maybe not much of a moral message, but a nice look into different walks of life.

Andre Aggasi -tennis champ. I was surprised I liked this so much. I’m not into tennis.

Chris Kyle -most efficient military sniper in history, and a real hero. Stand-up guy, honesty that will surprise you.

Lawrence Taylor (LT) – Giants football player. Heck of a story… How he played football at all, much less be one of the best, is a mystery to me.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Smitha I’ve read all of those except Walk in the Woods, I’ll look for that!

Kardamom's avatar

These are 2 books that I read about two very different boys growing up in the United States around the time of the Depression and WWII. The first one, the boy was born in the U.S. In the second one, the boy was born in Greece, but comes to the U.S. as a young boy. Both were very engaging and entertaining, despite the unfortunate times they were living in. They’re both very sweet and tender and ordinary in the best sense of that word. These were 2 books that I read late into the night.

Growing Up by Russell Baker.

Eleni by Nicholas Gage.

Running With Scissors by Agusten Burroughs. The book was great, the movie stank. This is about a kid who grows up in a loving household until his parents get a divorce, then everything changes, his mother is nuerotic and starts seeing a psychiatrist. Eventually they move the young boy, about aged 12 at this point, into the household of the psychiatrist, because she can’t cope with raising a child. Turns out that the psychatrist is crazy too. If you think about this whole situation, it should (and really is) very sad, but Augusten Burroughs is able to write about this, looking back as if the whole thing was a very funny farce. You will indeed LOL.

Me Talk Pretty Some Day by David Sedaris. A hilarious look at a gay man’s upbringing in suburban, 1960’s America and then later his time living with his boyfriend in France and trying to learn to speak French, properly.

A Girl Named Zippy about a girl growing up in the Midwest, in the 1960’s. I can totally relate to this sweet, funny story. By Haven Kimmel.

GloPro's avatar

@Kardamom David Sedaris is hilarious! I’ve read 3 of his books. Licking the light switch is one of the funniest visuals I have ever gotten from a book. Thanks for the reminder!

lillyhop's avatar

Oscar Wilde. I love him as an author and even more as a personality.

gailcalled's avatar

The founding fathers’ triumvirate: a good project for a cold and snowy February.

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, by Walter Isaacson

John Adams by David McCullough

Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves by Henry Wiencek

Bonus: My Dearest Friend: Letters of Abigail and John Adams

Kardamom's avatar

I just thought of another one Cross Creek by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings. This is the author who wrote the book The Yearling. This autobiography is about her 13 years living in a swampy area of Florida while she tends to her orange grove and pigs on her farm.

And Ten Thousand Sorrows by Elizabeth Kim. The autobiography of a young girl that was born in Korea to a Korean mother and a white soldier. Her grandfather and her uncle killed her mother in front of her, as an honor killing. Because she was of mixed race, the girl was considered worthless. She is later adopted by an American couple, who on the outside, were good Christian people, but they treated the girl as a slave. This is her story of coming to grips with everything that happened to her and learning what really happened, and coming out on the other side, as a decent, mature person. This book is not for the faint of heart.

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