The Choice: Embrace the Possible
Edith Eger - 2017
Separated from her parents on arrival, she endures unimaginable experiences, including being made to dance for the infamous Josef Mengele. When the camp is finally liberated, she is pulled from a pile of bodies, barely alive.The horrors of the Holocaust didn’t break Edith. In fact, they helped her learn to live again with a life-affirming strength and a truly remarkable resilience. The Choice is her unforgettable story.
Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship
Gregory Boyle - 2017
Critics hailed that book as an “astounding literary and spiritual feat” (Publishers Weekly) that is “destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality” (Los Angeles Times). Now, after the successful expansion of Homeboy Industries, Boyle returns with Barking to the Choir to reveal how compassion is transforming the lives of gang members. In a nation deeply divided and plagued by poverty and violence, Barking to the Choir offers a snapshot into the challenges and joys of life on the margins. Sergio, arrested at nine, in a gang by twelve, and serving time shortly thereafter, now works with the substance-abuse team at Homeboy to help others find sobriety. Jamal, abandoned by his family when he tried to attend school at age seven, gradually finds forgiveness for his schizophrenic mother. New father Cuco, who never knew his own dad, thinks of a daily adventure on which to take his four-year-old son. These former gang members uplift the soul and reveal how bright life can be when filled with unconditional love and kindness. This book is guaranteed to shake up our ideas about God and about people with a glimpse at a world defined by more compassion and fewer barriers. Gently and humorously, Barking to the Choir invites us to find kinship with one another and reconvinces us all of our own goodness.
The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State
Nadia Murad - 2017
A member of the Yazidi community, she and her brothers and sisters lived a quiet life. Nadia had dreams of becoming a history teacher or opening her own beauty salon.On August 15th, 2014, when Nadia was just twenty-one years old, this life ended. Islamic State militants massacred the people of her village, executing men who refused to convert to Islam and women too old to become sex slaves. Six of Nadia's brothers were killed, and her mother soon after, their bodies swept into mass graves. Nadia was taken to Mosul and forced, along with thousands of other Yazidi girls, into the ISIS slave trade.Nadia would be held captive by several militants and repeatedly raped and beaten. Finally, she managed a narrow escape through the streets of Mosul, finding shelter in the home of a Sunni Muslim family whose eldest son risked his life to smuggle her to safety.Today, Nadia's story - as a witness to the Islamic State's brutality, a survivor of rape, a refugee, a Yazidi - has forced the world to pay attention to an ongoing genocide. It is a call to action, a testament to the human will to survive, and a love letter to a lost country, a fragile community, and a family torn apart by war.
This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor
Adam Kay - 2017
Hilarious, horrifying and heartbreaking, this diary is everything you wanted to know – and more than a few things you didn't – about life on and off the hospital ward. As seen on ITV's Zoe Ball Book Club This edition includes extra diary entries and a new afterword by the author.
The Push: A Climber's Journey of Endurance, Risk, and Going Beyond Limits
Tommy Caldwell - 2017
Caldwell's odds-defying feat was the culmination of an entire lifetime of pushing himself to his limits as an athlete.This engrossing memoir chronicles the journey of a boy with a fanatical mountain-guide father who was determined to instill toughness in his son to a teen whose obsessive nature drove him to the top of the sport-climbing circuit. Caldwell's affinity for adventure then led him to the vertigo-inducing and little understood world of big wall free climbing. But his evolution as a climber was not without challenges; in his early twenties, he was held hostage by militants in a harrowing ordeal in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. Soon after, he lost his left index finger in an accident. Later his wife, and main climbing partner, left him. Caldwell emerged from these hardships with a renewed sense of purpose and determination. He set his sights on free climbing El Capitan's biggest, steepest, blankest face--the Dawn Wall. This epic assault took more than seven years, during which time Caldwell redefined the sport, found love again, and became a father.The Push is an arresting story of focus, drive, motivation, endurance, and transformation, a book that will appeal to anyone seeking to overcome fear and doubt, cultivate perseverance, turn failure into growth, and find connection with family and with the natural world.
The Moth Presents All These Wonders: True Stories about Facing the Unknown
Catherine Burns - 2017
Alongside Louis C.K., Tig Notaro, John Turturro, and Meg Wolitzer, readers will encounter: an astronomer gazing at the surface of Pluto for the first time, an Afghan refugee learning how much her father sacrificed to save their family, a hip-hop star coming to terms with being a one-hit wonder, a young female spy risking everything as part of Churchill's secret army during World War II, and more. High-school student and neuroscientist alike, the storytellers share their ventures into uncharted territory and how their lives were changed indelibly by what they discovered there. With passion, and humor, they encourage us all to be more open, vulnerable, and alive."
Survivors Club: The True Story of a Very Young Prisoner of Auschwitz
Michael Bornstein - 2017
Survivors Club tells the unforgettable story of how a father’s courageous wit, a mother’s fierce love, and one perfectly timed illness saved Michael’s life, and how others in his family from Zarki, Poland, dodged death at the hands of the Nazis time and again with incredible deftness. Working from his own recollections as well as extensive interviews with relatives and survivors who knew the family, Michael relates his inspirational story with the help of his daughter, Debbie Bornstein Holinstat. Shocking, heartbreaking, and ultimately uplifting, this narrative nonfiction offers an indelible depiction of what happened to one Polish village in the wake of the German invasion in 1939.
An American Family: A Memoir of Hope and Sacrifice
Khizr Khan - 2017
An American Family is an intensely personal story about the nature of true patriotism and what it's like to risk everything you know for the promise of a 226-year-old piece of parchment. As Khizr Khan traces his remarkable journey--from humble beginnings on a poultry farm in Pakistan to obtaining a degree from Harvard Law School and raising a family in America--he shows what it means to leave the limitations of one's country behind for the best values and promises of another. He also tells the story of the Khans' middle child, U.S. Army Captain Humayun Khan, who was killed while protecting his base camp in Iraq, and the ways in which their undying pride in him and his sacrifice have helped them endure the deepest despair a parent can know.The book is a stark depiction of what an American looks like, what being a nation of immigrants really means, and what it is to live-rather than simply to pay lip service to-our ideals.11 hours 18 minutes
The Best We Could Do
Thi Bui - 2017
Exploring the anguish of immigration and the lasting effects that displacement has on a child and her family, Bui documents the story of her family's daring escape after the fall of South Vietnam in the 1970s and the difficulties they faced building new lives for themselves. At the heart of Bui's story is a universal struggle: While adjusting to life as a first-time mother, she ultimately discovers what it means to be a parent — the endless sacrifices, the unnoticed gestures, and the depths of unspoken love. Despite how impossible it seems to take on the simultaneous roles of both parent and child, Bui pushes through.With haunting, poetic writing and breathtaking art, she examines the strength of family, the importance of identity, and the meaning of home. The Best We Could Do brings to life her journey of understanding and provides inspiration to all who search for a better future while longing for a simpler past.
Between Heaven and the Real World: My Story
Steven Curtis Chapman - 2017
Now, for the first time, Steven openly shares the experiences that have shaped him, his faith, and his music in a life that has included incredible highs and faith-shaking lows. Readers will be captivated by this exclusive look into Steven's childhood and challenging family dynamic growing up, how that led to music and early days on the road, his wild ride to the top of the charts, his relationship with wife Mary Beth, and the growth of their family through births and adoptions. In addition to inside stories from his days of youth to his notable career, including the background to some of his best-loved songs, readers will walk with Steven down the devastating road of loss after the tragic death of five-year-old daughter Maria. And they'll experience his return to the stage after doubting he could ever sing again. Poignant, gut-wrenchingly honest, yet always hopeful, Steven offers no sugary solutions to life's toughest questions. Yet out of the brokenness, he continues to trust God to one day fix what is unfixable in this life. This backstage look at the down-to-earth superstar they've come to love will touch fans' lives and fill their hearts with hope. Includes black-and-white photos throughout.
Rabbit: The Autobiography of Ms. Pat
Patricia Williams - 2017
You want to know what it takes to rise above your circumstances when all the cards are stacked against you? Ask me.Comedian Patricia Williams, who for years went by her street-name "Rabbit," was born and raised in Atlanta’s most troubled neighborhood at the height of the crack epidemic. One of five children, Pat watched as her alcoholic mother struggled to get by on charity, cons and petty crimes. At seven Pat was taught to roll drunks for money. At 12, she was targeted for sex by a man eight years her senior; by 13 she was pregnant. By 15 Pat was a mother of two. Alone at 16, Pat was determined to make a better life for her children. But with no job skills and an eighth-grade education, her options were limited. She learned quickly that hustling and humor were the only tools she had to survive. Rabbit is an unflinching memoir of cinematic scope and unexpected humor that offers a rare glimpse into the harrowing reality of life on America’s margins, resilience, determination, and the transformative power of love.
Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and Me
Bill Hayes - 2017
But, at forty-eight years old, having spent decades in San Francisco, he craved change. Grieving over the death of his partner, he quickly discovered the profound consolations of the city's incessant rhythms, the sight of the Empire State Building against the night sky, and New Yorkers themselves, kindred souls that Hayes, a lifelong insomniac, encountered on late-night strolls with his camera.And he unexpectedly fell in love again, with his friend and neighbor, the writer and neurologist Oliver Sacks, whose exuberance--"I don't so much fear death as I do wasting life," he tells Hayes early on--is captured in vignettes throughout. What emerges is a portrait of Sacks at his most personal and endearing, from falling in love for the first time at age seventy-five to facing illness and death (Sacks died of cancer in August 2015).
Life's Work: A Moral Argument for Choice
Willie Parker - 2017
Willie Parker grew up in the Deep South, lived in a Christian household, and converted to an even more fundamentalist form of Christianity as a young man. But upon reading an interpretation of the Good Samaritan in a sermon by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., he realized that in order to be a true Christian, he must show compassion for all women regardless of their needs. In 2009, he stopped practicing obstetrics to focus entirely on providing safe abortions for the women who need help the most—often women in poverty and women of color—and in the hot bed of the pro-choice debate: the South. He soon thereafter traded in his private practice and his penthouse apartment in Hawaii for the life of an itinerant abortion provider, focusing most recently on women in the Deep South. In Life’s Work, Dr. Willie Parker tells a deeply personal and thought-provoking narrative that illuminates the complex societal, political, religious, and personal realities of abortion in the United States from the unique perspective of someone who performs them and defends the right to do so every day. He also looks at how a new wave of anti-abortion activism, aimed at making incremental changes in laws and regulations state by state, are slowly chipping away at the rights of women to control their own lives. In revealing his daily battle against mandatory waiting periods and bogus rules governing the width of hallways, Dr. Parker uncovers the growing number of strings attached to the right to choose and makes a powerful Christian case for championing reproductive rights.
I Was Told to Come Alone: My Journey Behind the Lines of Jihad
Souad Mekhennet - 2017
I was not to carry any identification, and would have to leave my cell phone, audio recorder, watch, and purse at my hotel. . . ."For her whole life, Souad Mekhennet, a reporter for The Washington Post who was born and educated in Germany, has had to balance the two sides of her upbringing - Muslim and Western. She has also sought to provide a mediating voice between these cultures, which too often misunderstand each other.In this compelling and evocative memoir, we accompany Mekhennet as she journeys behind the lines of jihad, starting in the German neighborhoods where the 9/11 plotters were radicalized and the Iraqi neighborhoods where Sunnis and Shia turned against one another, and culminating on the Turkish/Syrian border region where ISIS is a daily presence. In her travels across the Middle East and North Africa, she documents her chilling run-ins with various intelligence services and shows why the Arab Spring never lived up to its promise. She then returns to Europe, first in London, where she uncovers the identity of the notorious ISIS executioner "Jihadi John," and then in France, Belgium, and her native Germany, where terror has come to the heart of Western civilization.Mekhennet's background has given her unique access to some of the world's most wanted men, who generally refuse to speak to Western journalists. She is not afraid to face personal danger to reach out to individuals in the inner circles of Al Qaeda, the Taliban, ISIS, and their affiliates; when she is told to come alone to an interview, she never knows what awaits at her destination.Souad Mekhennet is an ideal guide to introduce us to the human beings behind the ominous headlines, as she shares her transformative journey with us. Hers is a story you will not soon forget.
The Sober Diaries: How one woman stopped drinking and started living
Clare Pooley - 2017
She knew the change wouldn't be easy but she never expected to find herself an overweight, depressed, middle-aged mother of three who was drinking more than a bottle of wine a day, and spending her evenings Googling 'Am I an alcoholic?' This book is the bravely honest story of a year in Clare's life. A year that started with her quitting booze and then being given the devastating diagnosis of breast cancer. By the end of the year she is booze-free and cancer-free, she no longer has a wine belly, is two stone lighter and with a life that is so much richer, healthier and more rewarding than ever before. She has a happier family and a more positive outlook. Sober Diaries is an upbeat, funny and positive look at how to live life to the full. Interwoven within Clare's own very personal and brilliantly comic story is research and advice as she discovers the answers to questions like: How do I know if I'm drinking too much? How will I cope at parties? What do I say to friends and family? How do I cope with cravings? If I stop drinking will I lose weight? What if my partner still drinks? And many more.
This Life I Live: One Man's Extraordinary, Ordinary Life and the Woman Who Changed It Forever
Rory Feek - 2017
This vibrant and beautiful young woman would soon be on a unique journey for which no one is ever fully prepared. Her husband, Rory, and children, Heidi, Hopie, and Indiana, were beside her each step of the way. Rory, a prolific songwriter, entrepreneur, farmer, and overall tender man, has seen God bless his life in countless unexpected ways and had started a blog, thislifeilive.com, not really knowing its purpose other than he needed to write. That purpose soon became clearer when Joey’s cancer battle hit.By inviting so many into the final months of Joey’s life, this astounding couple captured the hearts of millions with their powerful love story, the manner in which they were handling the diagnosis, and the inspiring simple way they had chosen to live their lives.In this vulnerable book, Rory takes us into his own challenging life story and shows what can happen when God brings both his presence and the right companion into our lives. He also gives never-before-revealed details on what he calls “the long goodbye,” the blessing of being able to know that life is going to end and taking advantage of it. Feek shows how we all are actually there already and how we can learn to live that way every day. He then goes into detail toward the end of the book on what it’s like to try to move on with your life once you’ve “had it all.”
Daring to Hope: Finding God's Goodness in the Broken and the Beautiful
Katie Davis Majors - 2017
But joy often gave way to sorrow as she invested her heart fully in walking alongside people in the grip of poverty, addiction, desperation, and disease.After unexpected tragedy shook her family, for the first time Katie began to wonder, Is God really good? Does He really love us? When she turned to Him with her questions, God spoke truth to her heart and drew her even deeper into relationship with Him.Daring to Hope is an invitation to cling to the God of the impossible--the God who whispers His love to us in the quiet, in the mundane, when our prayers are not answered the way we want or the miracle doesn't come. It's about a mother discovering the extraordinary strength it takes to be ordinary. It's about choosing faith no matter the circumstance and about encountering God's goodness in the least expected places.Though your heartaches and dreams may take a different shape, you will find your own questions echoed in these pages. You'll be reminded of the gifts of joy in the midst of sorrow. And you'll hear God's whisper: Hold on to hope. I will meet you here.
Becoming Ms. Burton: From Prison to Recovery to Leading the Fight for Incarcerated Women
Susan Burton - 2017
Consumed by grief and without access to professional help, Susan self-medicated, becoming addicted first to cocaine, then crack. As a resident of South L.A., an impoverished black community under siege by the War on Drugs, it was but a matter of time before Susan was arrested. She cycled in and out of prison for fifteen years; never was she offered therapy or treatment for addiction. On her own, she eventually found a private drug rehabilitation facility.Once clean, Susan dedicated her life to supporting women facing similar struggles. She began by greeting women as they took their first steps of freedom, welcoming them into her home, providing a space of safety and community. Her organization, A New Way of Life, now operates five safe homes in Los Angeles that supply a lifeline to hundreds of formerly incarcerated women and their children—setting them on the track to education and employment rather than returns to prison. Susan is now nationally known as an advocate for restoring basic civil and human rights to those who have served time. Ms. Burton not only humanizes the deleterious impact of mass incarceration, it also points the way to the kind of structural and policy changes that will offer formerly incarcerated people the possibility of a life of meaning and dignity.
My Sister Milly
Gemma Dowler - 2017
. . 'My name is Gemma Dowler. On 21 March 2002, a serial killer named Levi Bellfield stole my sister and sent our family to Hell...'Everyone thinks they know the story of Milly Dowler.Haunting headlines about the missing schoolgirl splashed across front pages. The family's worst fears realised when her body was found months later. The years of waiting for the truth, only to learn that the killer, known to the police, lived just yards from where Milly had vanished. The parents subjected to horrific psychological torture at a trial orchestrated by the murderer. And the shocking revelation of what journalists would do for a story - criminal acts that brought down a national newspaper.But these bare facts hide the true story. In My Sister Milly, Gemma Dowler shares the heartbreaking account of Milly's disappearance, the suspicions that fell on the family, the fatal errors made by the police, and the media's obsession that focused relentlessly on every personal, intimate and emotional aspect of the Dowlers' lives. It is the story of two stolen childhoods - Milly's and Gemma's - and about the love that kept the family together as they struggled with terrible darkness and injustice.However, this book is a story of hope and recovery. It's taken fifteen years of pain for the family to find their voice. The family has worked hard and has received intensive therapy to recover from the trauma of Milly's murder. Their story shows that whatever suffering you endure in life, there is always hope, and there is always love. Now, for the first time, Gemma tells their story and that of the real Milly. Above all, in this book the family want to bring back to life their incredible daughter and sister. Now, finally, the truth about Milly Dowler can never be denied.
Crazy Is My Superpower: How I Triumphed by Breaking Bones, Breaking Hearts, and Breaking the Rules
A.J. Mendez Brooks - 2017
Brooks' Crazy is My Superpower is a literary memoir chronicling her unlikely rise from 100-pound nerd growing up in extreme poverty and enduring years of abuse to international sex symbol and professional wrestling champion (known as A.J. Lee). A.J. fought against stereotypes, forced the men in her industry to view her with respect, and inspired a huge fan base of over 2 million Twitter followers with her fierce independent streak.
The Little Big Things: A Young Man's Belief That Every Day Can Be a Good Day
Henry Fraser - 2017
Rowling. Being challenged in life is inevitable, but being defeated is optional... Henry Fraser was 17 years old when a tragic accident severed his spinal cord. Paralysed from the shoulders down, he has conquered unimaginable difficulty to embrace life and a new way of living. Through challenging adversity, he has found the opportunity to grow and inspire others. This book combines his wisdom and insight into finding the gifts in life's challenges, and will resonate with anyone facing an obstacle, no matter how big or small. It includes Henry's thoughts on how to look at the right things and avoid the wrong, finding progress in whatever you do, and acknowledging and accepting the darkness when it comes. Right at the heart of Henry's inspiring philosophy is his belief that every day is a good day.
The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober
Catherine Gray - 2017
64% of Brits want to drink less.Catherine Gray was stuck in a hellish whirligig of Drink, Make horrible decisions, Hangover, Repeat. She had her fair share of 'drunk tank' jail cells and topless-in-a-hot-tub misadventures. But this book goes beyond the binges and blackouts to deep-dive into uncharted territory: What happens after you quit drinking? This gripping, heart-breaking and witty book takes us down the rabbit-hole of an alternative reality. A life with zero hangovers, through sober weddings, sex, Christmases and breakups.In The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober, Catherine Gray shines a light on society's drink-pushing and talks to top neuroscientists and psychologists about why we drink, delving into the science behind what it does to our brains and bodies. Much more than a tale from the netherworld of addicted drinking, this book is about the escape, and why a sober life can be more intoxicating than you ever imagined. Whether you're a hopelessly devoted drinker, merely sober-curious, or you've already ditched the drink, you will love this book.
Craig & Fred: A Marine, A Stray Dog, and How They Rescued Each Other
Craig Grossi - 2017
While on patrol, he spotted a young dog "with a big goofy head and little legs" who didn’t seem vicious or run in a pack like most strays they’d encountered. After eating a piece of beef jerky Craig offered—against military regulations—the dog began to follow him. "Looks like you made a friend," another Marine yelled. Grossi heard, "Looks like a 'Fred.'" The name stuck, and a beautiful, life-changing friendship was forged.Fred not only stole Craig’s heart; he won over the RECON fighters, who helped Craig smuggle the dog into heavily fortified Camp Leatherneck in a duffel bag—risking jail and Fred’s life. With the help of a crew of DHL workers, a sympathetic vet, and a military dog handler, Fred eventually made it to Craig’s family in Virginia.Months later, when Craig returned to the U.S., it was Fred’s turn to save the wounded Marine from Post-Traumatic Stress. Today, Craig and Fred are touching lives nationwide, from a swampy campground in a Louisiana State Park to the streets of Portland, Oregon, and everywhere in between.A poignant and inspiring tale of hope, resilience, and optimism, with a timeless message at its heart—"it is not what happens to us that matters, but how we respond to it"—Craig & Fred is a shining example of the power of love to transform our hearts and our lives.
I, Who Did Not Die
Zahed Haftlang - 2017
Instead, the boy committed an astonishing act of mercy. It was an act that decades later would save his own life.This is a remarkable story. It is gut-wrenching, essential, and astonishing. It’s a war story. A love story. A page-turner of vast moral dimensions. An eloquent and haunting act of witness to horrors beyond grimmest fiction, and a thing of towering beauty. More importantly, it is a story that must be told, and a richly textured view into an overlooked conflict and misunderstood region. This is the great untold story of the children and young men whose lives were sacrificed at the whim of vicious dictators and pointless, barbaric wars. Little has been written of the Iran-Iraq war, which was among the most brutal conflicts of the twentieth century, one fought with chemical weapons, ballistic missiles, and cadres of child soldiers. The numbers involved are staggering: —All told, it claimed 700,000 lives—200,000 Iraqis, and 500,000 Iranians. —Young men of military service age—eighteen and above in Iraq, fifteen and above in Iran—died in the greatest numbers. —80,000 Iranian child soldiers were killed, mostly between the ages of sixteen and seventeen. —The two countries spent a combined 1.1 trillion dollars fighting the war. Rarely does this kind of reportage succeed so power- fully as literature. More rarely still does such searingly brilliant literature—fit to stand beside Remarque, Hemingway, and O’Brien—emerge from behind “enemy” lines. But Zahed, a child, and Najah, a young restaurateur, are rare men—not just survivors, but masterful, wondrously gifted storytellers. Written with award-winning journalist Meredith May, this is literature of a very high order, set down with passion, urgency, and consummate skill. This story is an affirmation that, in the end, it is our humanity that transcends politics and borders and saves us all.
In Shock: My Journey from Death to Recovery and the Redemptive Power of Hope
Rana Awdish - 2017
Rana Awdish never imagined that an emergency trip to the hospital would result in hemorrhaging nearly all of her blood volume and losing her unborn first child. But after her first visit, Dr. Awdish spent months fighting for her life, enduring consecutive major surgeries and experiencing multiple overlapping organ failures. At each step of the recovery process, Awdish was faced with something even more unexpected: repeated cavalier behavior from her fellow physicians—indifference following human loss, disregard for anguish and suffering, and an exacting emotional distance.Hauntingly perceptive and beautifully written, In Shock allows the reader to transform alongside Awidsh and watch what she discovers in our carefully-cultivated, yet often misguided, standard of care. Awdish comes to understand the fatal flaws in her profession and in her own past actions as a physician while achieving, through unflinching presence, a crystalline vision of a new and better possibility for us all.As Dr. Awdish finds herself up against the same self-protective partitions she was trained to construct as a medical student and physician, she artfully illuminates the dysfunction of disconnection. Shatteringly personal, and yet wholly universal, she offers a brave road map for anyone navigating illness while presenting physicians with a new paradigm and rationale for embracing the emotional bond between doctor and patient.
The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying
Nina Riggs - 2017
They are promises. They are the only way to walk from one night to the other."Nina Riggs was just thirty-seven years old when initially diagnosed with breast cancer--one small spot. Within a year, the mother of two sons, ages seven and nine, and married sixteen years to her best friend, received the devastating news that her cancer was terminal.How does one live each day, "unattached to outcome"? How does one approach the moments, big and small, with both love and honesty?Exploring motherhood, marriage, friendship, and memory, even as she wrestles with the legacy of her great-great-great grandfather, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nina Riggs's breathtaking memoir continues the urgent conversation that Paul Kalanithi began in his gorgeous When Breath Becomes Air. She asks, what makes a meaningful life when one has limited time?Brilliantly written, disarmingly funny, and deeply moving, The Bright Hour is about how to love all the days, even the bad ones, and it's about the way literature, especially Emerson, and Nina's other muse, Montaigne, can be a balm and a form of prayer. It's a book about looking death squarely in the face and saying "this is what will be."Especially poignant in these uncertain times, The Bright Hour urges us to live well and not lose sight of what makes us human: love, art, music, words.
A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea: One Refugee's Incredible Story of Love, Loss, and Survival
Melissa Fleming - 2017
She meets and falls in love with Bassem, a former Free Syrian Army fighter and together they decide to leave behind the hardship and harassment they face in Egypt to flee for Europe, joining the ranks of the thousands of refugees who make the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean on overcrowded and run-down ships to seek asylum overseas and begin a new life. After four days at sea, their boat is sunk by another boat filled with angry men shouting threats and insults. With no land in sight and surrounded by bloated, floating corpses, Doaa is adrift with a child’s inflatable water ring around her waist, while two little girls cling to her neck. Doaa must stay alive for them. She must not lose strength. She must not lose hope.
Fragile Lives: A Heart Surgeon’s Stories of Life and Death on the Operating Table
Stephen Westaby - 2017
A slip of the hand and life ebbs away.The balance between life and death is so delicate, and the heart surgeon walks that rope between the two. In the operating room there is no time for doubt. It is flesh, blood, rib-retractors and pumping the vital organ with your bare hand to squeeze the life back into it. An off-day can have dire consequences – this job has a steep learning curve, and the cost is measured in human life. Cardiac surgery is not for the faint of heart.Professor Stephen Westaby took chances and pushed the boundaries of heart surgery. He saved hundreds of lives over the course of a thirty-five year career and now, in his astounding memoir, Westaby details some of his most remarkable and poignant cases – such as the baby who had suffered multiple heart attacks by six months old, a woman who lived the nightmare of locked-in syndrome, and a man whose life was powered by a battery for eight years.A powerful, important and incredibly moving book, Fragile Lives offers an exceptional insight into the exhilarating and sometimes tragic world of heart surgery, and how it feels to hold someone’s life in your hands.
Daring to Drive: A Saudi Woman's Awakening
Manal Al-Sharif - 2017
In her adolescence, she was a religious radical, melting her brother’s boy band cassettes in the oven because music was haram: forbidden by Islamic law. But what a difference an education can make. By her twenties she was a computer security engineer, one of few women working in a desert compound that resembled suburban America. That’s when the Saudi kingdom’s contradictions became too much to bear: she was labeled a slut for chatting with male colleagues, her teenage brother chaperoned her on a business trip, and while she kept a car in her garage, she was forbidden from driving down city streets behind the wheel.Daring to Drive is the fiercely intimate memoir of an accidental activist, a powerfully vivid story of a young Muslim woman who stood up to a kingdom of men—and won. Writing on the cusp of history, Manal offers a rare glimpse into the lives of women in Saudi Arabia today. Her memoir is a remarkable celebration of resilience in the face of tyranny, the extraordinary power of education and female solidarity, and the difficulties, absurdities, and joys of making your voice heard.
The Mother of Black Hollywood: A Memoir
Jenifer Lewis - 2017
Yet, supported by loving friends and strengthened by "inner soldiers," Jenifer never stopped entertaining and creating.We watch as Jenifer develops icon status stemming from a series of legendary screen roles as the sassy, yet loveable, mama or auntie. And we watch as her emotional disturbances, culminating in a breakdown while filming The Temptations movie, launch her on a continuing search for answers, love, and healing.Written with no-holds-barred honesty and illustrated with sixteen-pages of color photos, this gripping memoir is filled with insights gained through a unique life that offers a universal message: "Love yourself so that love will not be a stranger when it comes."From her first taste of applause at five years old to landing on Broadway within eleven days of graduation and ultimately achieving success in movies, television and global concert halls, Jenifer reveals her outrageous life story with lots of humor, a few regrets and most importantly, unbridled joy. Candid, warm and wonderfully inspiring, The Mother of Black Hollywood intimately reveals the heart of a woman who lives life to the fullest.
Will's Red Coat: A Story of Friendship, Faith, and One Old Dog's Choice to Live Again
Tom Ryan - 2017
The only owners Will ever knew had grown too fragile to take care of themselves, or of him. Ultimately, Will was left at a kill shelter in New Jersey.Tom hoped to give Will a place to die with dignity, amid the rustic beauty of the White Mountains of his New Hampshire home. But when Will bites him numerous times and acts out in violent displays, Tom realizes he is in for a challenge.With endless patience and the kind of continued empathy Tom has nurtured in his relationship with Atticus, Will eventually begins to thrive. Soon, the angry, hurt, depressed, and near-death oldster has transformed into a happy, gamboling companion with a puppy-like zest for discovery. Will perseveres for two and a half years, inspiring hundreds of thousands of Tom and Atticus’ fans with his courage, resilience, and unforgettable heart.A story of a dog and an indelible bond that is beautiful, heartbreaking, uplifting, and unforgettable, Will’s Red Coat honors the promise held in all of us, at any stage of life.Will’s Red Coat includes eight pages of color photographs.
American Radical: Inside the World of an Undercover Muslim FBI Agent
Tamer Elnoury - 2017
But for the first time in this memoir, an active Muslim American federal agent reveals his experience infiltrating and bringing down a terror cell in North America.A longtime undercover agent, Tamer Elnoury joined an elite counterterrorism unit after September 11. Its express purpose is to gain the trust of terrorists whose goals are to take out as many Americans in as public and as devastating a way possible. It's a furious race against the clock for Tamer and his unit to stop them before they can implement their plans. Yet as new as this war still is, the techniques are as old as time: listen, record, and prove terrorist intent.Due to his ongoing work for the FBI, Elnoury writes under a pseudonym. An Arabic-speaking Muslim American, a patriot, a hero: To many Americans, it will be a revelation that he and his team even exist, let alone the vital and dangerous work they do keeping all Americans safe.
Black Privilege: Opportunity Comes to Those Who Create It
Charlamagne Tha God - 2017
This journey to truth begins in the small town of Moncks Corner, South Carolina, and leads to New York and headline-grabbing interviews and insights from celebrities like Kanye West, Kevin Hart, Malcolm Gladwell, Lena Dunham, Jay Z, and Hillary Clinton. Black Privilege lays out all the great wisdom Charlamagne’s been given from many mentors, and tells the uncensored story of how he turned around his troubled early life by owning his (many) mistakes and refusing to give up on his dreams, even after his controversial opinions got him fired from several on-air jobs. These life-learned principles include: -There are no losses in life, only lessons -Give people the credit they deserve for being stupid—starting with yourself -It’s not the size of the pond but the hustle in the fish -When you live your truth, no one can use it against you -We all have privilege, we just need to access it By combining his own story with bold advice and his signature commitment to honesty no matter the cost, Charlamagne hopes Black Privilege will empower you to live your own truth.
Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin
Sybrina Fulton - 2017
On a February evening in 2012, in a small town in central Florida, seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin was walking home with candy and a can of juice in hand and talking on the phone with a friend when a fatal encounter with a gun-wielding neighborhood watchman ended his young life. The watchman was briefly detained by the police and released. Trayvon's father, a truck driver named Tracy, tried to get answers from the police but was shut down and ignored. Trayvon's mother, a civil servant for the city of Miami, was paralyzed by the news of her son's death and lost in mourning, unable to leave her room for days. But in a matter of weeks, their son's name would be spoken by President Obama, honored by professional athletes, and passionately discussed all over traditional and social media. And at the head of a growing nationwide campaign for justice were Trayvon's parents, who driven by their intense love for their lost son discovered their voices, gathered allies, and launched a movement that would change the country. Five years after his tragic death, Travyon Martin's name is still evoked every day. He has become a symbol of social justice activism, as has his hauntingly familiar image: the photo of a child still in the process of becoming a young man, wearing a hoodie and gazing silently at the camera. But who was Trayvon Martin, before he became, in death, an icon? And how did one black child s death on a dark, rainy street in a small Florida town become the match that lit a civil rights crusade? Rest in Power, told through the compelling alternating narratives of Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, answers, for the first time, those questions from the most intimate of sources. It s the story of the beautiful and complex child they lost, the cruel unresponsiveness of the police and the hostility of the legal system, and the inspiring journey they took from grief and pain to power, and from tragedy and senselessness to meaning. Advance praise for Rest in Power"Not since Emmitt Till has a parent's love for a murdered child moved the nation to search its soul about racial injustice and inequality. Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin's extraordinary witness, indomitable spirit and unwavering demand for change have altered the dynamics of racial justice discourse in this country. This powerful book illuminates the witness, the grief, and the commitment to reform that Trayvon Martin's death has mobilized; it is a story fueled by a demand for justice but rooted in love." -- Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy "As the fifth anniversary of this tragic crime nears, Fulton and Martin share a remarkably candid and deeply affecting in-the-moment chronicle of the explosive aftermath of the murder. Writing in alternate chapters, they share every detail of their shock, grief, and grueling quest for justice. . . . Given the unconscionable shooting deaths of young black men, many by police, that followed Trayvon's, this galvanizing testimony from parents who channeled their sorrow into action offers a deeply humanizing perspective on the crisis propelling a national movement." --Booklist (starred review)
Real American: A Memoir
Julie Lythcott-Haims - 2017
The only child of a marriage between an African-American father and a white British mother, she shows indelibly how so-called "micro" aggressions in addition to blunt force insults can puncture a person's inner life with a thousand sharp cuts. Real American expresses also, through Lythcott-Haims's path to self-acceptance, the healing power of community in overcoming the hurtful isolation of being incessantly considered "the other."The author of the New York Times bestselling anti-helicopter parenting manifesto How to Raise an Adult, Lythcott-Haims has written a different sort of book this time out, but one that will nevertheless resonate with the legions of students, educators and parents to whom she is now well known, by whom she is beloved, and to whom she has always provided wise and necessary counsel about how to embrace and nurture their best selves. Real American is an affecting memoir, an unforgettable cri de coeur, and a clarion call to all of us to live more wisely, generously and fully.
Feeding My Mother: Comfort and Laughter in the Kitchen as My Mom Lives with Memory Loss
Jann Arden - 2017
Funny how time works. Since her dad died in 2015, Jann cooks for her mom five or six times a week. Her mom finds comfort in her daughter's kitchen, not just in the delicious food but also just sitting with her as she cooks. And Jann finds some peace in caring for her mom, even as her mom slowly becomes a stranger. If you told me two years ago that I'd be here, Jann writes, I wouldn't have believed it. And yet we still fall into so much laughter, feel so much insane gladness and joy. It's such a contrast from one minute to the next and it teaches me constantly: it makes me stronger and more humble and more empathetic and caring and kind. The many people who are dealing with a loved one who is losing it will find inspiration and strength in Jann's wholehearted, loving response and her totally Jann take on the upside-down world of a daughter mothering her mother. Feeding My Mother is one heck of an affirmation that life just keeps on keeping on, and a wonderful example of how you have to roll with it.
Coach Wooden and Me: Our 50-Year Friendship On and Off the Court
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - 2017
When future NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was still an 18-year-old high school basketball prospect from New York City named Lew Alcindor, he accepted a scholarship from UCLA largely on the strength of Coach John Wooden's reputation as a winner. It turned out to be the right choice, as Alcindor and his teammates won an unprecedented three NCAA championship titles. But it also marked the beginning of one of the most extraordinary and enduring friendships in the history of sports. In Coach Wooden and Me, Abdul-Jabbar reveals the inspirational story of how his bond with John Wooden evolved from a history-making coach-player mentorship into a deep and genuine friendship that transcended sports, shaped the course of both men's lives, and lasted for half a century.Coach Wooden and Me is a stirring tribute to the subtle but profound influence that Wooden had on Kareem as a player, and then as a person, as they began to share their cultural, religious, and family values while facing some of life's biggest obstacles. From his first day of practice, when the players were taught the importance of putting on their athletic socks properly; to gradually absorbing the sublime wisdom of Coach Wooden's now famous "Pyramid of Success"; to learning to cope with the ugly racism that confronted black athletes during the turbulent Civil Rights era as well as losing loved ones, Abdul-Jabbar fondly recalls how Coach Wooden's fatherly guidance not only paved the way for his unmatched professional success but also made possible a lifetime of personal fulfillment. Full of intimate, never-before-published details and delivered with the warmth and erudition of a grateful student who has learned his lessons well, Coach Wooden and Me is at once a celebration of the unique philosophical outlook of college basketball's most storied coach and a moving testament to the all-conquering power of friendship. Instant New York Times and USA Today Bestseller President Barack Obama's Favorite Book of 2017 A Boston Globe and Huffington Post Best Book of 2017 Pick
Chase the Rainbow
Poorna Bell - 2017
Punk rocker, bird nerd and book lover Rob Bell had a full, happy life. He had a loving wife, a big-bottomed dog named Daisy and a career as a respected science journalist. But beneath the carefully cultivated air of machoism and the need to help other people, he struggled with mental health and a drug addiction that began as a means to self-medicate his illness. In 2015, he ended his life in New Zealand on a winter’s night. But what happened? How did a middle-class Catholic boy from the suburbs, who had an ocean of people who loved him, and a brain the size of a planet, end up dying alone by his own hand? How did it get to this point? In the search to find out about the man she loved, and how he arrived at that desperate, dark moment, Poorna Bell, Executive Editor of The Huffington Post UK, went on a journey spanning New Zealand, India and England to discover more about him.A month after his death, she shared her personal tragedy in an open letter to Rob on the site, which went on to be read by hundreds of thousands of people across the world. This is Poorna’s story, not only of how she met the man of her dreams and fell in love, but also Rob’s story and how he suffered with depression since childhood and had secretly been battling addiction as a means to cope with the illness.Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 45 and a staggering 1 in 4 of us will experience mental illness disease at some point in our lives, but the stigma surrounding mental health means that millions still suffer in silence.Chase the Rainbow is an affecting, poetic, and deeply personal journey which teaches to seek hope and happiness, even in the most tragic of circumstances. Shattering the stigma surrounding depression and suicide, Poorna Bell challenges us talk about what we most fear, and to better understand the personal struggles of those closest to us.
Too Young to be a Mum
Maggie Hartley - 2017
Scared and alone, Jess is like a rabbit caught in the headlights. Unable to live with her own mother, a prostitute, and removed from the home of her childhood sweetheart, Darren, Jess is overwhelmed by the responsibility of caring for a newborn whilst still little more than a child herself. Maggie knows that Jess is desperate to reunite with Darren and to be a good mum to their son. Can Maggie help Jess keep her baby, and will the family ever be able to live together again?
When Death Takes Something from You Give It Back: Carl's Book
Naja Marie Aidt - 2017
When Death Takes Something from You Give It Back chronicles the few first years after receiving that devastating phone call. It is at once a sober account of life after losing a child and an exploration of the language of poetry, loss, and love.Intensely moving and quietly devastating, When Death Takes Something from You Give It Back explores what is it to be a family, what it is to love and lose, and what it is to treasure life in spite of death's indomitable resolve.
A Newfoundlander in Canada: Always Going Somewhere, Always Coming Home
Alan Doyle - 2017
Often in a van, sometimes in a bus, occasionally in a car with broken wipers "using Bob's belt and a rope found by Paddy's Pond" to pull them back and forth, Alan and his bandmates charted new territory, and he constantly measured what he saw of the vast country against what his forefathers once called the Daemon Canada. In a period punctuated by triumphant leaps forward for the band, deflating steps backward and everything in between--opening for Barney the Dinosaur at an outdoor music festival, being propositioned at a gas station mail-order bride service in Alberta, drinking moonshine with an elderly church-goer on a Sunday morning in PEI--Alan's few established notions about Canada were often debunked and his own identity as a Newfoundlander was constantly challenged. Touring the country, he also discovered how others view Newfoundlanders and how skewed these images can sometimes be. Asked to play in front of the Queen at a massive Canada Day festival on Parliament Hill, the concert organizers assured Alan and his bandmates that the best way to showcase Newfoundland culture was for them to be towed onto stage in a dory and introduced not as Newfoundlanders but as "Newfies." The boys were not amused. Heartfelt, funny and always insightful, these stories tap into the complexities of community and Canadianness, forming the portrait of a young man from a tiny fishing village trying to define and hold on to his sense of home while navigating a vast and diverse and wonder-filled country.
An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic
Daniel Mendelsohn - 2017
For Jay, a retired research scientist this return to the classroom is his "one last chance" to learn the great literature he'd neglected in his youth--and, even more, a final opportunity to more fully understand his son, a writer and classicist. But through the sometimes uncomfortable months that the two men explore Homer's great work together--first in the classroom, where Jay persistently challenges his son's interpretations, and then during a surprise-filled Mediterranean journey retracing Odysseus's famous voyages--it becomes clear that Daniel has much to learn, too: Jay's responses to both the text and the travels gradually uncover long-buried secrets that allow the son to understand his difficult father at last.
Fierce: How Competing for Myself Changed Everything
Aly Raisman - 2017
Aly Raisman first stepped onto a gymnastics mat as a toddler in a "mommy & me" gymnastics class. No one could have predicted then that sixteen years later, she'd be standing on an Olympic podium, having achieved her dreams. Aly's road to success was full of hard work, perseverance, and victories, but not without its hardships. Aly faced many obstacles, from naysayers who said she'd never make it in gymnastics to classmates who shamed her for her athletic body to a devastating betrayal of trust. Through it all, Aly surrounded herself with supportive family, friends, and teammates and found the inner strength to remain positive and believe in herself. Now, in her own words, Aly shows what it takes to be a champion on and off the floor, and takes readers on a behind-the-scenes journey before, during, and after her remarkable achievements in two Olympic Games--through her highest highs, lowest lows, and all the moments in between. Honest and heartfelt, frank and funny, Aly's story is enhanced with never-before-published photos, excerpts from the personal journals she's kept since childhood that chronicle memorable moments with her teammates, and hard-won advice for readers striving to rise above challenges, learn to love themselves, and make their own dreams come true.
Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies
Michael Ausiello - 2017
From his time at Soaps in Depth and Entertainment Tonight to his influential stints at TV Guide and Entertainment Weekly to his current role as co-founder of the wildly popular website TVLine.com, Michael has established himself as the go-to expert when it comes to our most popular form of entertainment.What many of his fans don’t know, however, is that while his professional life was in full swing, Michael had to endure the greatest of personal tragedies: his longtime boyfriend, Kit Cowan, was diagnosed with a rare and very aggressive form of neuroendrocrine cancer. Over the course of eleven months, Kit and Michael did their best to combat the deadly disease, but Kit succumbed to his illness in February 2015.In this heartbreaking and darkly hilarious memoir, Michael tells the story of his harrowing and challenging last year with Kit while revisiting the thirteen years that preceded it, and how the undeniably powerful bond between him and Kit carried them through all manner of difficulty—always with laughter front and center in their relationship. Instead of a tale of sadness and loss, Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies is an unforgettable, inspiring, and beautiful testament to the resilience and strength of true love.
High Achiever: The Incredible True Story of One Addict's Double Life
Tiffany Jenkins - 2017
Now, she's clean and sober, a married mother of three. As she found her way in her new life, she started sharing on social media as an outlet for her depression and anxiety. She struck a chord, several of her videos went viral (one with 46million views), and in the past year her following exploded from a few hundred thousand to more than 3 million.The memoir opens in the Florida women's prison where Tiffany was incarcerated for 180 days. The memoir flashes back in time to the events that led to Tiffany's imprisonment (during the time of her active addiction, Tiffany was dating and living with a cop), and moves forward to her eventual sobriety.
Myriam Gurba - 2017
Blending radical formal fluidity and caustic humor, Mean turns what might be tragic into piercing, revealing comedy. This is a confident, funny, brassy book that takes the cost of sexual assault, racism, misogyny, and homophobia deadly seriously.We act mean to defend ourselves from boredom and from those who would cut off our breasts. We act mean to defend our clubs and institutions. We act mean because we like to laugh. Being mean to boys is fun and a second-wave feminist duty. Being mean to men who deserve it is a holy mission. Sisterhood is powerful, but being mean is more exhilarating.Being mean isn't for everybody.Being mean is best practiced by those who understand it as an art form.These virtuosos live closer to the divine than the rest of humanity. They're queers.Myriam Gurba is a queer spoken-word performer, visual artist, and writer from Santa Maria, California. She's the author of Dahlia Season (2007, Manic D) which was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, Wish You Were Me (2011, Future Tense Books), and Painting Their Portraits in Winter (2015, Manic D). She has toured with Sister Spit and her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach. She lives in Long Beach, where she teaches social studies to eighth-graders.
Al Franken, Giant of the Senate
Al Franken - 2017
From Senator Al Franken - #1 bestselling author and beloved SNL alum - comes the story of an award-winning comedian who decided to run for office and then discovered why award-winning comedians tend not to do that.This is a book about an unlikely campaign that had an even more improbable ending: the closest outcome in history and an unprecedented eight-month recount saga, which is pretty funny in retrospect.It's a book about what happens when the nation's foremost progressive satirist gets a chance to serve in the United States Senate and, defying the low expectations of the pundit class, actually turns out to be good at it.It's a book about our deeply polarized, frequently depressing, occasionally inspiring political culture, written from inside the belly of the beast.In this candid personal memoir, the honorable gentleman from Minnesota takes his army of loyal fans along with him from Saturday Night Live to the campaign trail, inside the halls of Congress, and behind the scenes of some of the most dramatic and/or hilarious moments of his new career in politics.Has Al Franken become a true Giant of the Senate? Franken asks readers to decide for themselves.
How Dare the Sun Rise: Memoirs of a War Child
Sandra Uwiringiyimana - 2017
The rebels had come at night—wielding weapons, torches, machetes. She watched as her mother and six-year-old sister were gunned down in a refugee camp, far from their home in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The rebels were killing people who weren’t from the same community, the same tribe. In other words, they were killing people simply for looking different.“Goodbye, life,” she said to the man ready to shoot her. Remarkably, the rebel didn’t pull the trigger, and Sandra escaped into the night. Thus began a new life for her and her surviving family members. With no home and no money, they struggled to stay alive. Eventually, through a United Nations refugee program, they moved to America, only to face yet another ethnic disconnect. Sandra may have crossed an ocean, but there was now a much wider divide she had to overcome. And it started with middle school in New York. In this profoundly moving memoir, Sandra tells the story of her survival, of finding her place in a new country, and of her hope for the future.
Dear World: A Syrian Girl's Story of War and Plea for Peace
Bana Alabed - 2017
Rowling “I’m very afraid I will die tonight.” —Bana Alabed, Twitter, October 2, 2016 “Stop killing us.” —Bana Alabed, Twitter, October 6, 2016 “I just want to live without fear.” —Bana Alabed, Twitter, October 12, 2016When seven-year-old Bana Alabed took to Twitter to describe the horrors she and her family were experiencing in war-torn Syria, her heartrending messages touched the world and gave a voice to millions of innocent children. Bana’s happy childhood was abruptly upended by civil war when she was only three years old. Over the next four years, she knew nothing but bombing, destruction, and fear. Her harrowing ordeal culminated in a brutal siege where she, her parents, and two younger brothers were trapped in Aleppo, with little access to food, water, medicine, or other necessities. Facing death as bombs relentlessly fell around them—one of which completely destroyed their home—Bana and her family embarked on a perilous escape to Turkey. In Bana’s own words, and featuring short, affecting chapters by her mother, Fatemah, Dear World is not just a gripping account of a family endangered by war; it offers a uniquely intimate, child’s perspective on one of the biggest humanitarian crises in history. Bana has lost her best friend, her school, her home, and her homeland. But she has not lost her hope—for herself and for other children around the world who are victims and refugees of war and deserve better lives. Dear World is a powerful reminder of the resilience of the human spirit, the unconquerable courage of a child, and the abiding power of hope. It is a story that will leave you changed.
Fire Road: The Napalm Girl's Journey Through the Horrors of War to Faith, Forgiveness, and Peace
Kim Phuc Phan Thi - 2017
It's a moment forever captured, an iconic image that has come to define the horror and violence of the Vietnam War. Kim was left for dead in a morgue; no one expected her to survive the attack. Napalm meant fire, and fire meant death.Against all odds, Kim lived--but her journey toward healing was only beginning. When the napalm bombs dropped, everything Kim knew and relied on exploded along with them: her home, her country's freedom, her childhood innocence and happiness. The coming years would be marked by excruciating treatments for her burns and unrelenting physical pain throughout her body, which were constant reminders of that terrible day. Kim survived the pain of her body ablaze, but how could she possibly survive the pain of her devastated soul?Fire Road is the true story of how she found the answer in a God who suffered Himself; a Savior who truly understood and cared about the depths of her pain. Fire Road is a story of horror and hope, a harrowing tale of a life changed in an instant--and the power and resilience that can only be found in the power of God's mercy and love.
Broken: A traumatised girl. Her troubled brother. Their shocking secret.
Rosie Lewis - 2017
Rosie remembers that when asked what he enjoyed most about the course, Archie said: ‘the biscuits’.Social workers are concerned that Archie and Bobbi have been neglected. As Rosie gets to know the children, she begins to suspect that something far more disturbing lies in their past.Archie, jovial and polite, bats away Rosie’s attempts to talk to him about anything serious with witty one-liners and sophisticated distractions. Bobbi reacts violently, lashing out and throwing herself around. Rosie has never seen a child as young a Bobbi behaving so viciously, but it is Archie she is most concerned about as the weeks go by.After a worrying incident at school, Archie tearfully discloses the truth – a shocking secret that has left him and his sister traumatised. Horrified at what she learns, Rosie is determined to help the young siblings find a forever-home that will provide them with the love and care they deserve.
How Not To Be a Boy
Robert Webb - 2017
Rules for being a man:Don't Cry; Love Sport; Play Rough; Drink Beer; Don't Talk About FeelingsBut Robert Webb has been wondering for some time now: are those rules actually any use? To anyone?Looking back over his life, from schoolboy crushes (on girls and boys) to discovering the power of making people laugh (in the Cambridge Footlights with David Mitchell), and from losing his beloved mother to becoming a husband and father, Robert Webb considers the absurd expectations boys and men have thrust upon them at every stage of life.Hilarious and heartbreaking, How Not To Be a Boy explores the relationships that made Robert who he is as a man, the lessons we learn as sons and daughters, and the understanding that sometimes you aren't the Luke Skywalker of your life - you're actually Darth Vader.
We're Going to Need More Wine
Gabrielle Union - 2017
In the wake of rape allegations made against director and actor Nate Parker, Union—a forty-four-year-old actress who launched her career with roles in iconic ’90s movies—instantly became the insightful, outspoken actress that Hollywood has been desperately awaiting. With honesty and heartbreaking wisdom, she revealed her own trauma as a victim of sexual assault: "It is for you that I am speaking. This is real. We are real." In this moving collection of thought provoking essays infused with her unique wisdom and deep humor, Union uses that same fearlessness to tell astonishingly personal and true stories about power, color, gender, feminism, and fame. Union tackles a range of experiences, including bullying, beauty standards, and competition between women in Hollywood, growing up in white California suburbia and then spending summers with her black relatives in Nebraska, coping with crushes, puberty, and the divorce of her parents. Genuine and perceptive, Union bravely lays herself bare, uncovering a complex and courageous life of self-doubt and self-discovery with incredible poise and brutal honesty. Throughout, she compels us to be ethical and empathetic, and reminds us of the importance of confidence, self-awareness, and the power of sharing truth, laughter, and support.
Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
Roxane Gay - 2017
I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere. . . . I was trapped in my body, one that I barely recognized or understood, but at least I was safe.”In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself.With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.
Travels with Rachel: In Search of South America
George Mahood - 2017
Join George and Rachel on their hilarious journey through the wilds of Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia, as they climb volcanoes, fish for piranhas, trek through the Amazon rainforest, take death-defying bus rides, sample some of the continent’s strangest delicacies, and try to get to Machu Picchu. Armed only with a basic knowledge of Spanish, small backpacks, and bags of enthusiasm, they set off together on what promised to be a life-changing adventure.
You & a Bike & a Road
Eleanor Davis - 2017
The immediacy of Davis’ comics journal makes for an incredible chronicle of human experience on the most efficient and humane form of human transportation.Eleanor Davis is a cartoonist and illustrator. She lives in Athens, GA and was born in Tucson, Arizona. In 2009, Davis won the Eisner's Russ Manning Most Promising Newcomer Award and was named one of Print magazine's New Visual Artists. In 2015, her book How To Be Happy won the Ignatz Award for Outstanding Anthology or Collection.
The Impossible: The Miraculous Story of a Mother's Faith and Her Child's Resurrection
Joyce Smith - 2017
Through the years and the struggles, when life seemed more about hurt and loss than hope and mercy, God was positioning the Smiths for something extraordinary - the death and resurrection of their son.When Joyce Smith's 14-year-old son John fell through an icy Missouri lake one winter morning, she and her family had seemingly lost everything. At the hospital, John lay lifeless for more than 60 minutes. They asked themselves, How could God do this to us? But Joyce was not ready to give up on her son. She mustered all her faith and strength and cried out to God in a loud voice to save her son.Immediately, her son's heart miraculously started beating, again.In the coming days, her son would defy every expert, every case history, and every scientific prediction. Sixteen days after falling through the ice and being clinically dead for an hour, John Smith walked out of the hospital under his own power, completely healed. THE IMPOSSIBLE is about a profound truth: prayer really does work. God uses it to remind us that He is always with us, and when we combine it with unshakable faith, nothing is impossible.
The Elephant Chaser's Daughter
Shilpa Raj - 2017
She faced abandonment by her mother, the formidable constraints placed on her by her family, and the barbs of village elders bound by hundreds of years of oppressive practices and customs that subjugate women. Shilpa is torn between the contrasting lives she leads: one of servitude and injustice experienced by her family; the other of opportunity and empowerment offered by a good education in a school started by a philanthropist.Just when all seems settled, an unforeseen death under mysterious circumstances shatters whatever stability remains in her life. Pulled in opposite directions, and torn between despair and dreams, Shilpa finally makes a choice for her future. Is she strong enough to stand up to the people she loves, and pursue what she wants?At its heart The Elephant Chaser’s Daughter is about hope, when all seems lost. Written with raw honesty and grit, this is a deeply moving memoir of a young girl confronting her ‘untouchable’ status in a caste-based society, and her aspirations for modernity.Reviews so far: Kirkus Review: Shilpa was given the chance to transcend her family history and perhaps her own karma. A deft portrayal of a young woman’s growth and courageous transformation through education.Sir Ken Robinson:Shilpa Raj is a powerful new voice for human dignity and opportunity and against the appalling and demeaning mistreatment of women worldwide. An important and deeply affecting book narrated in a moving and intimate style.Sir Ken Robinson, Author and EducatorSri Vishwanath:The Elephant Chaser’s Daughter unveils the secret of transcendence. Shilpa Raj is the future voice for the poor and deprived, uncovering the diamond in the rubble. Read her.well-known authorVanessa Roth:Shilpa’s story speaks for millions of families in a way that is immediate, intimate and personal. Her book will have a powerful impact on the lives and minds of young people around the world.film director, and winner of Academy AwardMadhu Trehan:Shilpa’s searing, penetrating honesty in the account of her life will change perspectives and impact every reader. It gives hope to the under-privileged and sensitizes the privileged.Editor-in-Chief, Newslaundry.com
Endurance: A Year in Space, A Lifetime of Discovery
Scott Kelly - 2017
"A stunning memoir from the astronaut who spent a record-breaking year aboard the International Space Station – a candid account of his remarkable voyage, the journeys that preceded it, and his colorful formative years." Inside book cover comments.
Higher Is Waiting
Tyler Perry - 2017
With tenderness he sketches portraits of the people who sustained him and taught him indelible lessons about integrity, trust in God, and the power of forgiveness: his aunt Mae, who cared for her grandfather, who was born a slave, and sewed quilts that told a story of generations; Mr. Butler, a blind man of remarkable dignity and elegance, who sold penny candies on a street corner; and his beloved mother, Maxine, who endured abuse, financial hardship, and the daily injustices of growing up in the Jim Crow South yet whose fierce love for her son burned bright and never dimmed. Perry writes of how he nurtured his dreams and discovered solace in nature, and of his resolute determination to reach ever higher.Perry vividly and movingly describes his growing awareness of God's presence in his life, how he learned to tune in to His voice, to persevere through hard times, and to choose faith over fear. Here he is: the devoted son, the loving father, the steadfast friend, the naturalist, the philanthropist, the creative spirit--a man whose life lessons and insights into scripture are a gift offered with generosity, humility, and love.
Gorilla and the Bird: A Memoir of Madness and a Mother's Love
Zack McDermott - 2017
Every passerby was an actor; every car would magically stop for him; everything he saw was a cue from "The Producer" to help inspire the performance of a lifetime. After a manic spree around Manhattan, Zack, who is bipolar, was arrested on a subway platform and admitted to Bellevue Hospital. So begins the story of Zack's freefall into psychosis and his desperate, poignant, often darkly funny struggle to claw his way back to sanity. It's a journey that will take him from New York City back to his Kansas roots and to the one person who might be able to save him, his tough, big-hearted Midwestern mother, nicknamed the Bird, whose fierce and steadfast love is the light in Zack's dark world. Before his odyssey is over, Zack will be tackled by guards in mental wards, run naked through cornfields, receive secret messages from the TV, befriend a former Navy Seal and his talking stuffed monkey, and see the Virgin Mary in the whorls of his own back hair. But with the Bird's help, he just might have a shot at pulling through, starting over, and maybe even meeting a woman who can love him back, bipolar and all. Written with raw emotional power, humor, and tenderness, GORILLA AND THE BIRD is a bravely honest account of a young man's unraveling and the relationship that saves him.
Scared Selfless: My Journey from Abuse and Madness to Surviving and Thriving
Michelle Stevens - 2017
In it, she's only eight years old and posing for her mother's beguiling boyfriend, Gary Lundquist an elementary school teacher, neighborhood stalwart, and brutal pedophile. Later that night, Gary locks Michelle in a cage, tortures her repeatedly, and uses her to quench his voracious and deviant sexual whims.Michelle can also pinpoint the moment she reconstituted the splintered pieces of her life. Just a few years after being confined to a mental hospital and at the mercy of an alternate personality who kept trolling for sadistic men, she's in cap and gown receiving her Ph.D. in psychology and the university's award for best dissertation. The distance between these two points is the improbable journey from torture, loss, and mental illness to recovery that is Michelle Stevens' powerful memoir, Scared Selfless.Gary Lundquist kept Michelle as his sex slave for six years. During that time, he waged a campaign of unimaginable cruelty. He pimped her out to countless men for prostitution and forced her to perform in kiddie porn when it was legal and shown in Times Square.It took fifteen years, three hospitalizations, and multiple suicide attempts for Michelle to work through Gary's dark legacy. She suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, and developed multiple personalities. There was Chelsey, the rebellious teenager who told her boss to shove it; Vicious, a tween with homicidal rage; and Sarah, a sweet little girl who brought her teddy bear on a first date.In this harrowing yet unflinching look at her own experience, Michelle, who was inspired to help others heal by becoming a psychotherapist, sheds light on the all-too-real threat of child sexual abuse and the psychological effects on its victims and best methods for healing, based on her own struggle with PTSD and dissociative identity disorder (more commonly known as multiple personality disorder). Scared Selfless is an examination at the extraordinary and inexplicable feats of the mind in the face of unspeakably horrifying trauma and the story of Michelle's courageous road to healing, recovery, and triumph.
Life's Too Short to Go So F*cking Slow: Lessons from an Epic Friendship That Went the Distance
Susan Lacke - 2017
She was a young, overweight college professor with a pack-and-a-half a day habit and a bad attitude. He was her boss, and an accomplished Ironman triathlete. She was a whiner, he was a hardass. He had his shit together, she most assuredly did not. Yet Susan and Carlos shared a deep and abiding friendship that traversed life, sport, illness, death, and everything in between.Amusing and poignant, Life's Too Short To Go So F*cking Slow is about running and triathlon, growth and heartbreak, and an epic friendship that went the distance.
The Dead Moms Club: A Memoir about Death, Grief, and Surviving the Mother of All Losses
Kate Spencer - 2017
In The Dead Moms Club, she walks readers through her experience of stumbling through grief and loss, and helps them to get through it, too. This isn't a weepy, sentimental story, but rather a frank, up-front look at what it means to go through gruesome grief and come out on the other side.An empathetic read, The Dead Moms Club covers how losing her mother changed nearly everything in her life: both men and women readers who have lost parents or experienced grief of this magnitude will be comforted and consoled. Spencer even concludes each chapter with a cheeky but useful tip for readers (like the "It's None of Your Business Card" to copy and hand out to nosy strangers asking about your passed loved one).
Driving Miss Norma: One Family's Journey Saying "Yes" to Living
Tim Bauerschmidt - 2017
But instead of confining herself to a hospital bed for what could be her last stay, Miss Norma—newly widowed after nearly seven decades of marriage—rose to her full height of five feet and told the doctor, “I’m ninety years old. I’m hitting the road.” And so Miss Norma took off on an unforgettable around-the-country journey in a thirty-six-foot motor home with her retired son Tim, his wife Ramie, and their dog Ringo. As this once timid woman says “yes” to living in the face of death, she tries regional foods for the first time, reaches for the clouds in a hot air balloon, and mounts up for a horseback ride. With each passing mile (and one educational visit to a cannabis dispensary), Miss Norma’s health improves and conversations that had once been taboo begin to unfold. Norma, Tim, and Ramie bond in ways they had never done before, and their definitions of home, family, and friendship expand. Stop by stop, state by state, they meet countless people from all walks of life—strangers who become fast friends and welcome them with kindness and open hearts.Infused with this irrepressible nonagenarian’s wisdom, courage, and generous spirit, Driving Miss Norma is the charming, infectiously joyous chronicle of their experiences on the road. It portrays a transformative journey of living life on your own terms that shows us it is never too late to begin an adventure, inspire hope, or become a trailblazer.
Surpassing Certainty: What My Twenties Taught Me
Janet Mock - 2017
Janet Mock is adjusting to her days as a first-generation college student at the University of Hawaii and her nights as a dancer at a strip club. Finally content in her body, she vacillates between flaunting and concealing herself as she navigates dating and disclosure, sex and intimacy, and most important, letting herself be truly seen. Under the neon lights of Club Nu, Janet meets Troy, a yeoman stationed at Pearl Harbor naval base, who becomes her first. The pleasures and perils of their union serve as a backdrop for Janet’s progression through her early twenties with all the universal growing pains—falling in and out of love, living away from home, and figuring out what she wants to do with her life. Despite her disadvantages, fueled by her dreams and inimitable drive, Janet makes her way through New York City while holding her truth close. She builds a career in the highly competitive world of magazine publishing—within the unique context of being trans, a woman, and a person of color. Long before she became one of the world’s most respected media figures and lauded leaders for equality and justice, Janet was a girl taking the time she needed to just be—to learn how to advocate for herself before becoming an advocate for others. As you witness Janet’s slow-won success and painful failures, Surpassing Certainty will embolden you, shift the way you see others, and affirm your journey in search of self.
Happy Mum, Happy Baby: My Adventures in Motherhood
Giovanna Fletcher - 2017
A positive and uplifting book about what it is to be a mother and all things mum and baby by Celebrity Mum of the Year and phenomenally popular vlogger, author, TV presenter and actress Giovanna Fletcher.Being a mum is an incredible journey, a remarkable experience that changes how we look, how we feel, who we are. As mothers we are strong, protective, proud. We feel a love like no other.But being a parent can be hard too. It challenges us physically, mentally, emotionally. There are the days where just managing to fit a shower in amidst the endless feeding, entertaining young children and surviving on a lack of sleep feels like an achievement. With so many people ready to offer 'advice' on the best way to parent, it can feel like you are getting it all wrong.Since Giovanna and her husband Tom Fletcher have had their sons Buzz and Buddy, they have been sharing glimpses of their family life. With an infectiously positive outlook and happy take on all things mum-related, Giovanna has developed a following of fellow parents and mums-to-be.This is not a book about how to have the perfect family experience - Gi would be the first to admit she is winging it just as much as the rest of us - instead it is an honest, upbeat and incredibly personal account of her own experience of having a family. In Happy Mum, Happy Baby Giovanna shares her own journey through parenthood and in doing so, she looks at what it is to be a mother today, encourages you to be confident in yourself as a parent and celebrates how putting a focus on being a happy and confident mum can really make for a happy baby.
Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose
Joe Biden - 2017
And in so doing, he offers something for everyone, no matter which strand draws you in.”—The New York Times Book ReviewIn November 2014, thirteen members of the Biden family gathered on Nantucket for Thanksgiving, a tradition they had been celebrating for the past forty years; it was the one constant in what had become a hectic, scrutinized, and overscheduled life. The Thanksgiving holiday was a much-needed respite, a time to connect, a time to reflect on what the year had brought, and what the future might hold. But this year felt different from all those that had come before. Joe and Jill Biden’s eldest son, Beau, had been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor fifteen months earlier, and his survival was uncertain. “Promise me, Dad,” Beau had told his father. “Give me your word that no matter what happens, you’re going to be all right.” Joe Biden gave him his word.Promise Me Dad chronicles the year that followed, which would be the most momentous and challenging in Joe Biden’s extraordinary life and career. As vice president, Biden traveled more than a hundred thousand miles that year, across the world, dealing with crises in Ukraine, Central America, and Iraq. When a call came from New York, or Capitol Hill, or Kyiv, or Baghdad—“Joe, I need your help”—he responded. For twelve months, while Beau fought for and then lost his life, the vice president balanced the twin imperatives of living up to his responsibilities to his country and his responsibilities to his family. And never far away was the insistent and urgent question of whether he should seek the presidency in 2016.The year brought real triumph and accomplishment, and wrenching pain. But even in the worst times, Biden was able to lean on the strength of his long, deep bonds with his family, on his faith, and on his deepening friendship with the man in the Oval Office, Barack Obama.Writing with poignancy and immediacy, Joe Biden allows readers to feel the urgency of each moment, to experience the days when he felt unable to move forward as well as the days when he felt like he could not afford to stop.This is a book written not just by the president, but by a father, grandfather, friend, and husband. Promise Me Dad is a story of how family and friendships sustain us and how hope, purpose, and action can guide us through the pain of personal loss into the light of a new future.
Jack Slater: Orphan Train to Cattle Baron
Johnny Gunn - 2017
He was saved by the Children’s Aid Society that placed orphaned children with families on the frontier. These families welcomed the children and most found loving homes. Some grew up to become industrial, political, or community leaders. Slater did not find a loving home. Instead, he found himself at Pete Jablonski’s farm in Fargo, Dakota Territory where abuse was a daily dose of reality. When outlaws rob a local mine payroll and kill four men in the process, Slater makes a mortal enemy of the Elko County Sheriff that takes Slater's life is an unexpected direction.
You Don't Have to Say You Love Me
Sherman Alexie - 2017
The result is this stunning memoir. Featuring 78 poems, 78 essays and intimate family photographs, Alexie shares raw, angry, funny, profane, tender memories of a childhood few can imagine--growing up dirt-poor on an Indian reservation, one of four children raised by alcoholic parents. Throughout, a portrait emerges of his mother as a beautiful, mercurial, abusive, intelligent, complicated woman. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me is a powerful account of a complicated relationship, an unflinching and unforgettable remembrance.
Blue: A Memoir - Keeping the Peace and Falling to Pieces
John Sutherland - 2017
Rising quickly through the ranks, and compelled by the opportunity to make a real difference to people's lives, he worked across the capital, experiencing first-hand the enormous satisfaction as well as the endless trauma that a life in blue can bring.There were remarkable, career-defining moments: commanding armed sieges, saving lives and helping to take dangerous people off the streets. But for every case with a happy ending, there were others that ended in desperate sadness.In early 2013, John suffered a major breakdown and consequent battle with crippling depression. After a career spent racing to be the first at the scene of crimes and catastrophes, he found himself in pieces, unable to put one foot in front of the other.Blue is a memoir of crime and calamity, of adventure and achievement, of friendship and failure, of laughter and loss, of the best and the worst of humanity, of serious illness and slow recovery. With searing honesty, it offers an immensely moving and personal insight into what it is to be a police officer in Britain today.
Becoming Myself: A Psychiatrist's Memoir
Irvin D. Yalom - 2017
Yalom puts himself on the couch in a lapidary memoir.Irvin D. Yalom has made a career of investigating the lives of others. In this profound memoir, he turns his writing and his therapeutic eye on himself. He opens his story with a nightmare: He is twelve and is riding his bike past the home of an acne-scarred girl. Like every morning, he calls out, hoping to befriend her, "Hello Measles!" But in his dream, the girl's father makes Yalom understand that his daily greeting had hurt her. For Yalom, this was the birth of empathy; he would not forget the lesson. As Becoming Myself unfolds, we see the birth of the insightful thinker whose books have been a beacon to so many. This is not simply a man's life story, Yalom's reflections on his life and development are an invitation for us to reflect on the origins of our own selves and the meanings of our lives.
Road Racer: It's in My Blood
Michael Dunlop - 2017
Brother of William, also an accomplished rider, son of the late Robert and nephew of the late great Joey Dunlop, Michael can fairly claim that racing is in his blood. Now for the first time he talks in depth about his family story, how he got involved in the family business and how he manages to keep getting back on his bike despite all he knows of the deadly risks he encounters every time he crosses the start line.The death of his uncle during a competition in Estonia in 2000 was followed just eight years later by the death of his father at the North West 200. But despite these tragic losses Michael was undeterred and, two days after his father's death, he returned to the North West, and won. The next year Michael won his first TT, joining both his father and uncle in the record books.Now with thirteen TT wins to his name Michael is a phenomenal competitor, and in this sensational autobiography he reveals the highs and lows of racing, what it was like growing up part of a motorcycle dynasty and how that made him the incredible racing driver he is today.
Convicted: A Crooked Cop, an Innocent Man, and an Unlikely Journey of Forgiveness and Friendship
Jameel Zookie McGee - 2017
This revealing story explores racism in small-city America and ultimately highlights the power of the gospel to heal the relationship of two of the most unlikely candidates for reconciliation.
Becoming Kareem: Growing Up On and Off the Court
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - 2017
At one time, Lew Alcindor was just another kid from New York City with all the usual problems: He struggled with fitting in, with pleasing a strict father, and with overcoming shyness that made him feel socially awkward. But with a talent for basketball, and an unmatched team of supporters, Lew Alcindor was able to transform and to become Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. From a childhood made difficult by racism and prejudice to a record-smashing career on the basketball court as an adult, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's life was packed with ""coaches"" who taught him right from wrong and led him on the path to greatness. His parents, coaches Jack Donahue and John Wooden, Muhammad Ali, Bruce Lee, and many others played important roles in Abdul-Jabbar's life and sparked him to become an activist for social change and advancement. The inspiration from those around him, and his drive to find his own path in life, are highlighted in this personal and awe-inspiring journey. Written especially for young readers, Becoming Kareem chronicles how Kareem Abdul-Jabbar become the icon and legend he is today, both on and off the court.
The Pianist from Syria: A Memoir
Aeham Ahmad - 2017
They raised a new generation in Syria while waiting for the conflict to be resolved so they could return to their homeland. Instead, another fight overtook their asylum. Their only haven was in music and in each other.Forced to leave his family behind, Aeham sought out a safe place for them to call home and build a better life, taking solace in the indestructible bond between fathers and sons to keep moving forward. Heart-wrenching yet ultimately full of hope, and told in a raw and poignant voice, The Pianist from Syria is a gripping portrait of one man’s search for a peaceful life for his family and of a country being torn apart as the world watches in horror.
Those Who Forget: My Family's Story in Nazi Europe – A Memoir, A History, A Warning
Géraldine Schwarz - 2017
During World War II, Géraldine Schwarz’s German grandparents were neither heroes nor villains; they were merely Mitlaüfer—those who followed the current. Once the war ended, they wanted to bury the past under the wreckage of the Third Reich. Decades later, while delving through filing cabinets in the basement of their apartment building in Mannheim, Schwarz discovers that in 1938, her paternal grandfather Karl took advantage of Nazi policies to buy a business from a Jewish family for a low price. She finds letters from the only survivor of this family (all the others perished in Auschwitz), demanding reparations. But Karl Schwarz refused to acknowledge his responsibility. Géraldine starts to question the past: How guilty were her grandparents? What makes us complicit? On her mother’s side, she investigates the role of her French grandfather, a policeman in Vichy. Weaving together the threads of three generations of her family story with Europe’s process of post-war reckoning, Schwarz explores how millions were seduced by ideology, overcome by a fog of denial after the war, and, in Germany at least, eventually managed to transform collective guilt into democratic responsibility. She asks: How can nations learn from history? And she observes that countries that avoid confronting the past are especially vulnerable to extremism. Searing and unforgettable, Those Who Forget is a riveting memoir, an illuminating history, and an urgent call for remembering.
The Wrong Way to Save Your Life: Essays
Megan Stielstra - 2017
From an important new American writer comes this powerful collection of personal essays on fear, creativity, art, faith, academia, the Internet, and justice.In this poignant and inciting collection of literary essays, Megan Stielstra tells stories to ward off fears both personal and universal as she grapples toward a better way to live. In her titular piece “The Wrong Way To Save Your Life,” she answers the question of what has value in our lives—a question no longer rhetorical when the apartment above her family’s goes up in flames. “Here is My Heart” sheds light on Megan’s close relationship with her father, whose continued insistence on climbing mountains despite a series of heart attacks leads the author to dissect deer hearts in a poetic attempt to interrogate her own feelings about mortality. Whether she's imagining the implications of open-carry laws on college campuses, recounting the story of going underwater on the mortgage of her first home, or revealing the unexpected pains and joys of marriage and motherhood, Stielstra's work informs, impels, enlightens, and embraces us all. The result is something beautiful—this story, her courage, and, potentially, our own.Intellectually fierce and viscerally intimate, Megan Stielstra's voice is witty, wise, warm, and above all, achingly human.“Stielstra is a masterful essayist.”—Roxane Gay, author of Bad Feminist and Hunger
Finding Gobi: The True Story of a Little Dog and an Incredible Journey
Dion Leonard - 2017
The lovable pup, who earned the name ‘Gobi’, proved that what she lacked in size, she more than made up for in heart, as she went step for step with Dion over the treacherous Tian Shan Mountains, managing to keep pace with him for nearly 80 miles.As Dion witnessed the incredible determination of this small animal, he felt something change within himself. In the past he had always focused on winning and being the best, but his goal now was simply to make sure that his new friend was safe, nourished and hydrated. Although Dion did not finish first, he felt he had won something far greater and promised to bring Gobi back to the UK for good to become a new addition to his family. This was the start of a journey neither of them would ever forget with a roller coaster ride of drama, grief, heartbreak, joy and love that changed their lives forever.Finding Gobi is the ultimate story of hope, of resilience and of friendship, proving once again, that dogs really are ‘man’s best friend.’
Matt Smith - 2017
In September 2016, they experienced the trip of a lifetime with 14 friends and a crew of 10 while traveling in wooden dories through the canyon. Dories, Ho! is a story of their adventure and discovery. Similar to their first travel memoir Dear Bob and Sue, this book is as much about their relationship as it is their fantastic trip. Matt and Karen’s quirky writing style is both humorous and irreverent. It’s fun, laugh out loud, and an easy read. While not intended to be a traditional guidebook, anyone contemplating a river trip through the Grand Canyon will benefit from this firsthand account. The reader will feel as if they’ve traveled with the authors on their journey to and through Grand Canyon National Park. If you are looking for a story that will make you laugh and inspire you to get out and see our incredible national parks, Dories, Ho! is for you.
Member of the Family: My Story of Charles Manson, Life Inside His Cult, and the Darkness That Ended the Sixties
Dianne Lake - 2017
Over the course of two years, the impressionable teenager endured manipulation, psychological control, and physical abuse as the harsh realities and looming darkness of Charles Manson’s true nature revealed itself. From Spahn ranch and the group acid trips, to the Beatles’ White Album and Manson’s dangerous messiah-complex, Dianne tells the riveting story of the group’s descent into madness as she lived it.Though she never participated in any of the group’s gruesome crimes and was purposely insulated from them, Dianne was arrested with the rest of the Manson Family, and eventually learned enough to join the prosecution’s case against them. With the help of good Samaritans, including the cop who first arrested her and later adopted her, the courageous young woman eventually found redemption and grew up to lead an ordinary life.While much has been written about Charles Manson, this riveting account from an actual Family member is a chilling portrait that recreates in vivid detail one of the most horrifying and fascinating chapters in modern American history.Member of the Family includes 16 pages of photographs.
Revolution for Dummies: Laughing through the Arab Spring
Bassem Youssef - 2017
Comedy shouldn’t take courage, but it made an exception for Bassem.” --Jon StewartSemi-Finalist in the Humor category in the Goodreads Choice Awards."The Jon Stewart of the Arabic World"—the creator of The Program, the most popular television show in Egypt’s history—chronicles his transformation from heart surgeon to political satirist, and offers crucial insight into the Arab Spring, the Egyptian Revolution, and the turmoil roiling the modern Middle East, all of which inspired the documentary about his life, Tickling Giants.Bassem Youssef’s incendiary satirical news program, Al-Bernameg (The Program), chronicled the events of the 2011 Egyptian Revolution, the fall of President Hosni Mubarak, and the rise of Mubarak’s successor, Mohamed Morsi. Youssef not only captured his nation’s dissent but stamped it with his own brand of humorous political criticism, in which the Egyptian government became the prime laughing stock.So potent were Youssef’s skits, jokes, and commentary, the authoritarian government accused him of insulting the Egyptian presidency and Islam. After a six-hour long police interrogation, Youssef was released. While his case was eventually dismissed, his television show was terminated, and Youssef, fearful for his safety, fled his homeland.In Revolution for Dummies, Youssef recounts his life and offers hysterical riffs on the hypocrisy, instability, and corruption that has long animated Egyptian politics. From the attempted cover-up of the violent clashes in Tahrir Square to the government’s announcement that it had created the world’s first "AIDS cure" machine, to the conviction of officials that Youssef was a CIA operative—recruited by Jon Stewart—to bring down the country through sarcasm. There’s much more—and it’s all insanely true.Interweaving the dramatic and inspiring stories of the development of his popular television show and his rise as the most contentious funny-man in Egypt, Youssef’s humorous, fast-paced takes on dictatorship, revolution, and the unforeseeable destiny of democracy in the Modern Middle East offers much needed hope and more than a few healing laughs. A documentary about his life, Tickling Giants, debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2016, and is now scheduled for major release.
Reading with Patrick: A Teacher, a Student, and a Life-Changing Friendship
Michelle Kuo - 2017
But she soon encountered the jarring realities of life in one of the poorest counties in America, still disabled by the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow. In this stirring memoir, Kuo, the child of Taiwanese immigrants, shares the story of her complicated but rewarding mentorship of one student, Patrick Browning, and his remarkable literary and personal awakening.Convinced she can make a difference in the lives of her teenaged students, Michelle Kuo puts her heart into her work, using quiet reading time and guided writing to foster a sense of self in students left behind by a broken school system. Though Michelle loses some students to truancy and even gun violence, she is inspired by some such as Patrick. Fifteen and in the eight grade, Patrick begins to thrive under Michelle's exacting attention. However, after two years of teaching, Michelle feels pressure from her parents and the draw of opportunities outside the Delta and leaves Arkansas to attend law school.Then, on the eve of her law-school graduation, Michelle learns that Patrick has been jailed for murder. Feeling that she left the Delta prematurely and determined to fix her mistake, Michelle returns to Helena and resumes Patrick's education — even as he sits in a jail cell awaiting trial. Every day for the next seven months they pore over classic novels, poems, and works of history. Little by little, Patrick grows into a confident, expressive writer and a dedicated reader galvanized by the works of Frederick Douglass, James Baldwin, Walt Whitman, W.S. Merwin, and others. In her time reading with Patrick, Michelle is herself transformed, contending with the legacy of racism and the questions of what constitutes a "good" life and what the privileged owe to those with bleaker prospects.Reading with Patrick is an inspirational story of friendship, a coming-of-age story of both a young teacher and a student, a resonant meditation on education, race, and justice in the rural South, and a love letter to literature and its power to transcend social barriers.
Happiness: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After
Heather Harpham - 2017
Their magical interlude ends, full stop, when Heather becomes pregnant - Brian is sure he loves her, only he doesn't want kids. Heather returns to California to deliver their daughter alone, buoyed by family and friends. Mere hours after Gracie's arrival, Heather's bliss is interrupted when a nurse wakes her, "Get dressed, your baby is in trouble." This is not how Heather had imagined new motherhood – alone, heartsick, an unexpectedly solo caretaker of a baby who smelled "like sliced apples and salted pretzels" but might be perilously ill. Brian reappears as Gracie's condition grows dire; together Heather and Brian have to decide what they are willing to risk to ensure their girl sees adulthood. The grace and humor that ripple through Harpham's writing transform the dross of heartbreak and parental fears into a clear-eyed, warm-hearted view of the world. Profoundly moving and subtly written, Happiness radiates in many directions - new, romantic love; gratitude for a beautiful, inscrutable world; deep, abiding friendship; the passion a parent has for a child; and the many unlikely ways to build a family. Ultimately it's a story about love and happiness, in their many crooked configurations.
Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371
M.K. Czerwiec - 2017
Taking Turns pulls back the curtain on life in the ward.A shining example of excellence in the treatment and care of patients, Unit 371 was a community for thousands of patients and families affected by HIV and AIDS and the people who cared for them. This graphic novel combines Czerwiec’s memories with the oral histories of patients, family members, and staff. It depicts life and death in the ward, the ways the unit affected and informed those who passed through it, and how many look back on their time there today. Czerwiec joined Unit 371 at a pivotal time in the history of AIDS: deaths from the syndrome in the Midwest peaked in 1995 and then dropped drastically in the following years, with the release of antiretroviral protease inhibitors. This positive turn of events led to a decline in patient populations and, ultimately, to the closure of Unit 371. Czerwiec’s restrained, inviting drawing style and carefully considered narrative examine individual, institutional, and community responses to the AIDS epidemic—as well as the role that art can play in the grieving process.Deeply personal yet made up of many voices, this history of daily life in a unique AIDS care unit is an open, honest look at suffering, grief, and hope among a community of medical professionals and patients at the heart of the epidemic.
New Year, Same Trash: Resolutions I Absolutely Did Not Keep (A Vintage Short Original)
Samantha Irby - 2017
Nope. With a small group of woo-woo others, Irby sets seventy micro-resolutions, and then—with the rest of us—she fails at almost every single one of them. Thoughtful, witty, poignant—the failed intentions in New Year Same Trash will make you laugh and cry. Because you know you’ve been there. You can’t wake up in time to go to brunch. Swimming three times a week? Who are you kidding. You’re not going to shower every day or pack your lunch every day. You’re definitely not going to choose a smart movie over mindless entertainment, because you’re tired. You’re lazy. And, no, you’re never going to be a positive thinker. “I didn’t do this. I’m gonna. Maybe.” Don’t worry. It’s okay. There’s always next year. Instantly recognizable to anyone who’s ever failed to make goals and stick with them, New Year Same Trash will bring hilarious relief.A Vintage Shorts Original. An ebook short.
The Actor's Life: A Survival Guide
Jenna Fischer - 2017
Louis. With a theater degree in hand, she was certain everything would fall easily into place. Never mind that she didn’t know a single person in the entertainment industry. She was determined, she was confident, she was ready to work hard. So, what could go wrong?Uh, basically everything. It would be eight long years before she landed her Emmy-nominated role of Pam Beesley on The Office—nearly a decade of failure, struggle, rejection and doubt. The path to professional acting was more competitive than she’d ever imagined. Headshots, agents, classes, auditions . . . there was a lot to learn. And with so many obstacles to navigate, it wasn’t always easy to fight off discouragement. If only she’d had a handbook for the struggling actor. Or, better yet, someone to show her the way—an established actor who could manage her expectations, educate her about the business, and reassure her in those moments of despair.Jenna Fischer wants to be that person for you. With candor and wit, Fischer lays out what it takes to establish yourself in the profession. Based on her own memorable and hilarious experiences, she provides invaluable advice on how to get the right head shot, what to look for in representation, and the importance of getting out there and just doing something. She also provides helpful hints on how to be gutsy and take risks, the tricks to good auditioning and callbacks, and how not to fall for certain scams. (Auditions in a guy’s apartment are probably not legit—or at least not for the kind of part you’re looking for!)Fischer’s inspiring guidance will make you feel like you have a trusted friend who’s made the journey and has now returned to walk beside you, pointing out the pitfalls as you blaze your own path toward the life of a professional actor.
Always Another Country
Sisonke Msimang - 2017
Her parents, talented and highly educated, travel from Zambia to Kenya and Canada and beyond with their young family. Always the outsider, and against a backdrop of racism and xenophobia, Sisonke develops her keenly perceptive view of the world. In this sparkling account of a young girl’s path to womanhood, Sisonke interweaves her personal story with her political awakening in America and Africa, her euphoria at returning to the new South Africa, and her disillusionment with the new elites. Confidential and reflective, Always Another Country is a search for belonging and identity: a warm and intimate story that will move many readers.Sisonke Msimang is one of the most exciting contemporary female black voices in literature. Now based in Perth, Australia, she regularly contributes to publications like The Guardian, the Huffington Post, and the New York Times. She has over 20,000 followers on Twitter @Sisonkemsimang. Her TED Talk,“If a story moves you, act on it,” has been viewed over 1.3 million times.
Logical Family: A Memoir
Armistead Maupin - 2017
It was a journey that would lead him from a homoerotic Navy initiation ceremony in the jungles of Vietnam to that strangest of strange lands: San Francisco in the early 1970s. Reflecting on the profound impact those closest to him have had on his life, Maupin shares his candid search for his "logical family," the people he could call his own. "Sooner or later, we have to venture beyond our biological family to find our logical one, the one that actually makes sense for us," he writes. "We have to, if we are to live without squandering our lives." From his loving relationship with his palm-reading Grannie who insisted Maupin was the reincarnation of her artistic bachelor cousin, Curtis, to an awkward conversation about girls with President Richard Nixon in the Oval Office, Maupin tells of the extraordinary individuals and situations that shaped him into one of the most influential writers of the last century. Maupin recalls his losses and life-changing experiences with humor and unflinching honesty, and brings to life flesh-and-blood characters as endearing and unforgettable as the vivid, fraught men and women who populate his enchanting novels. What emerges is an illuminating portrait of the man who depicted the liberation and evolution of America’s queer community over the last four decades with honesty and compassion—and inspired millions to claim their own lives.
Abandon Me: Memoirs
Melissa Febos - 2017
First, her birth father, who left her with only an inheritance of addiction and Native American blood, its meaning a mystery. As Febos tentatively reconnects, she sees how both these lineages manifest in her own life, marked by compulsion and an instinct for self-erasure. Meanwhile, she remains closely tied to the sea captain who raised her, his parenting ardent but intermittent as his work took him away for months at a time. Woven throughout is the hypnotic story of an all-consuming, long-distance love affair with a woman, marked equally by worship and withdrawal. In visceral, erotic prose, Febos captures their mutual abandonment to passion and obsession -- and the terror and exhilaration of losing herself in another.At once a fearlessly vulnerable memoir and an incisive investigation of art, love, and identity, Abandon Me draws on childhood stories, religion, psychology, mythology, popular culture, and the intimacies of one writer's life to reveal intellectual and emotional truths that feel startlingly universal.
The Last Hillwalker: A sideways look at forty years in Britain's Mountains
John D. Burns - 2017
John Burns takes you on a journey of over forty years from the hills of Britain to adventures in the Rocky Mountains of USA and Canada. His love for the Scottish Highlands and his intimate knowledge of its wild glens and distant peaks means that this book will resonate with anyone whose heart lies in Scotland. Join John Burns in his first faltering steps as a schoolboy in the English Lake District through to climbing adventures in the great ranges of the world and finally to his return to his beloved Highlands. This is a book about the people who love mountains and whose journeys amongst them enrich their lives. It is a story told with humour, humility and passion, a tale that displays a deeper understanding of what it is to have a relationship with nature. The Last Hillwalker has become a best seller amongst the outdoor community. With almost 100 FIVE STAR REVIEWS this is book will be enjoyed by everyone from the serious mountaineer to those who simply want to gain a greater insight into our relationship with wild places. Here’s what people say about the book… Chris Townsend Captures the essence of what it means to love mountains and love being in mountains. Trev C gripping like no other NS Eyre captures the essence of the appeal many of us feel for the mountains A Reader perfectly paced and with great humour Yorrell Entertaining, funny and well written. S McGinn Full of fascinating details, observations, characters and humour Paul a brilliant autobiography by a talented writer, full of humour with the occasional dark moment. The best mountaineering book I've read in a long time!
Crown Heights (Kindle Single)
Colin Warner - 2017
With no evidence against him, Colin was wrongfully convicted and wrongfully imprisoned for more than two decades. But time and walls could not break the friends’ bond. Carl’s extraordinary resolve, sacrifice, and courage were Colin’s last rays of hope in a harrowing struggle for freedom and justice. Whatever it took, Carl was not going to leave his best friend behind.
You Carried Me: A Daughter's Memoir
Melissa Ohden - 2017
In this intimate memoir she details for the first time her search for her biological parents, and her own journey from anger and shame to faith and empowerment. After a decade-long search Melissa finally locates her birth father and writes to extend forgiveness, only to learn that he has died without answering her burning questions. Melissa becomes a mother herself in the very hospital where she was aborted. This experience transforms her attitude toward women who have had abortions, as does the miscarriage of her only son and the birth of a second daughter with complex health issues. But could anything prepare her for the day she finally meets her birth mother and hears her side of their story? This intensely personal story of love and redemption illumines the powerful bond between mother and child that can overcome all odds.
After the Eclipse: A Mother's Murder, a Daughter's Search
Sarah Perry - 2017
When Sarah Perry was twelve, she saw a partial eclipse of the sun, an event she took as a sign of good fortune for her and her mother, Crystal. But that brief moment of darkness ultimately foreshadowed a much larger one: two days later, Crystal was murdered in their home in rural Maine, just a few feet from Sarah’s bedroom. The killer escaped unseen; it would take the police twelve years to find him, time in which Sarah grew into adulthood, struggling with abandonment, police interrogations, and the effort of rebuilding her life when so much had been lost. Through it all she would dream of the eventual trial, a conviction—all her questions finally answered. But after the trial, Sarah’s questions only grew. She wanted to understand her mother’s life, not just her final hours, and so she began a personal investigation, one that drew her back to Maine, taking her deep into the abiding darkness of a small American town. Told in searing prose, After the Eclipse is a luminous memoir of uncomfortable truth and terrible beauty, an exquisite memorial for a mother stolen from her daughter, and a blazingly successful attempt to cast light on her life once more.
Tiger Bravo's War: An epic year with an elite airborne rifle company of the 101st Airborne Division's Wandering Warriors, during the height of the Vietnam War
Rick St. John - 2017
A band of paratroopers that defied the odds. A bond that couldn’t be broken. In the bloodiest year (1968) of a decade long war, a company called “Tiger Bravo” fought across the battlefields of Vietnam, as part of an elite Strike Force nicknamed the “Wandering Warriors.” By the time the last chopper departed, Tiger Bravo had amassed a staggering 150 Purple Hearts and mourned the loss of 30 brothers in arms. In Tiger Bravo’s War, you’ll discover the trials and tribulations of life in the combat zone from soldiers’ letters and the personal stories of survivors. You’ll learn what it was like to trudge through the dark heart of the jungle, take to the streets in the Tet Offensive, launch a daring rescue mission, and dodge booby-traps deep within enemy territory. Through unbearable hardships, gut wrenching losses and rare moments of joy and laughter, you’ll watch as a company of America’s youth transforms itself from a collection of total strangers in civilian life to an elite unit of highly trained paratroopers and, as their Vietnam odyssey unfolds, to battle-hardened, war-weary veterans willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for their brothers. In St John's compelling memoir, you’ll discover: - An episodic narrative taking the reader on a journey with Tiger Bravo, from stateside training through its first year of combat. - Light-hearted antics between missions, featuring rock n’ roll in the mess hall and drunken hijinks. - Personal stories from surviving veterans, including a west Texas oilfields high school dropout, a medic abandoned by his mother, and the son of a World War II Japanese fighter pilot turned Silver Star recipient.- A glimpse of the lasting impact of the war, including failed marriages, alcoholism, and PTSD.- In-depth research, including interviews from more than 20 veterans, battlefield journals and letters, seven hundred plus primary source footnotes and much, much more!
The Man in the Tent: My Life under Canvas - The First Four Years
Tony Beardsall - 2017
In this volume he relates the first four years of his outdoor odyssey, from his initial escapist trips, through his gradual move towards full-time outdoor living, to his decision to put the harsh British winters behind him and head off to the more benign climate of southern Spain. Sincere but light-hearted, this story recounts his experiences in Lancashire, Yorkshire and Scotland, alongside the mental journey leading to his conviction that a conventional life is no longer for him, despite the well-meaning advice of his family and friends. The second and final part of Tony’s story will be available this winter.
What About the Rest of Your Life
Sung Yim - 2017
Equal parts grim and buoyant, here is an intimate portrait of trauma, family, addiction, and body. What About the Rest of Your Life exposes the harrowing terrain where there is no boundary between love and abuse. Unapologetically raw, Yim reinvents the recovery narrative through an immigrant's lens.PRAISE FOR WHAT ABOUT THE REST OF YOUR LIFE:“So achingly beautiful I want to sing. I want to set things on fire. I want to put this book in your hands and say, ‘Here. You have to read this. Right goddamn now.’” -Megan Stielstra, The Wrong Way to Save Your Life“Never before has a book made me fall in love so quickly. What About the Rest of Your Life signals a courageous, crucial, and authentic new voice in literature." -Jenny Boully, Book of Beginnings and Endings"Sung Yim has absorbed and chronicled the new unsettled America in a memoir that vibrates with grief as it attempts to uncover the nexus of masked identities in the Midwest. Theirs is the voice of a generation who is left with the pieces of a disassembled culture. What About the Rest of Your Life is a sustained movement of life, its rawness, gaping holes, and found joys."-Re'Lynn Hansen, author of To Some Women I Have Known“Read this book built from dopamine and the hollows of its absence, this book I’m obsessed with. It will gut you and it will refill you." -Elissa Washuta, My Body Is a Book of Rules“This book is fucking brilliant.” -Glenn Taylor, A Hanging at Cinder Bottom“The kind of book that gets you somewhere new, somewhere more honest and shot through with the hard emotion of living. A striking debut.” -T Fleischmann, Syzygy, Beauty: An Essay"Sung Yim has written an enthralling memoir. It's powerful, vulnerable, and deeply pleasurable. It's a harrowing house fire of a book. Everything that Sung Yim burns up with their excellent prose becomes sanctified, gutted, and glorious."-David Stuart MacLean, The Answer to the Riddle Is Me
Dare to Dream: My Struggle to Become a Mum – A Story of Heartache and Hope
Izzy Judd - 2017
But the months started to tick by, with each one ending in disappointment and frustration. And then the inevitable panic started to set in ...'Having been told by doctors that, due to Izzy's polycystic ovarian syndrome, they would have difficulty conceiving - and after two years of trying - Izzy and Harry turned to IVF. Izzy's aim, drawing on her own experience, is to break through some of the taboos surrounding miscarriage, IVF and fertility issues. This brutally honest and deeply personal account will acknowledge the struggles that so many couples go through but will ultimately focus on the positive, life-changing and remarkable results that IVF can yield. One in seven couples in the UK have difficulty conceiving and although many babies are now born through IVF, there is still a sense of awkwardness around the subject. Izzy hopes that this book will be a companion to those going through similar challenges to those she has experienced. As she herself says, 'No couple should have to go through it alone and in silence.'