Mountbatten


Brian Hoey - 1994
    Behind the public acclaim which his wartime achievements brought him, he had vanity and a controversial lifestyle. He had influential connections with the Royal Family but made many enemies, including Winston Churchill, who never forgave him for his part in "giving away India", while courtiers in the Royal Household disliked him for his arrogance and interference. Both Mountbatten and his wife were widely known to have had numerous affairs, but this was rarely spoken of outside their circle. He was an egotistical man, fascinated by Royalty and his own relationship to the Royal Family, and delighted in being seen with celebrities. His biographer, Brian Hoey, knew Mountbatten for ten years and interviewed him on radio and television. Hoey talked to many in the Royal Household, and also to Prince Philip, Prince Michael of Kent and King Constantine of Greece about their memories of Mountbatten. Both of Mountbatten's daughters, and his grandchildren also agreed to speak.

Stories I Tell Myself: Growing Up with Hunter S. Thompson


Juan F. Thompson - 2015
    Thompson, “smart hillbilly,” boy of the South, born and bred in Louisville, Kentucky, son of an insurance salesman and a stay-at-home mom, public school-educated, jailed at seventeen on a bogus petty robbery charge, member of the U.S. Air Force (Airmen Second Class), copy boy for Time, writer for The National Observer, et cetera. From the outset he was the Wild Man of American journalism with a journalistic appetite that touched on subjects that drove his sense of justice and intrigue, from biker gangs and 1960s counterculture to presidential campaigns and psychedelic drugs. He lived larger than life and pulled it up around him in a mad effort to make it as electric, anger-ridden, and drug-fueled as possible.  Now Juan Thompson tells the story of his father and of their getting to know each other during their forty-one fraught years together. He writes of the many dark times, of how far they ricocheted away from each other, and of how they found their way back before it was too late. He writes of growing up in an old farmhouse in a narrow mountain valley outside of Aspen—Woody Creek, Colorado, a ranching community with Hereford cattle and clover fields . . . of the presence of guns in the house, the boxes of ammo on the kitchen shelves behind the glass doors of the country cabinets, where others might have placed china and knickknacks . . . of climbing on the back of Hunter’s Bultaco Matador trail motorcycle as a young boy, and father and son roaring up the dirt road, trailing a cloud of dust . . . of being taken to bars in town as a small boy, Hunter holding court while Juan crawled around under the bar stools, picking up change and taking his found loot to Carl’s Pharmacy to buy Archie comic books . . . of going with his parents as a baby to a Ken Kesey/Hells Angels party with dozens of people wandering around the forest in various stages of undress, stoned on pot, tripping on LSD . . . He writes of his growing fear of his father; of the arguments between his parents reaching frightening levels; and of his finally fighting back, trying to protect his mother as the state troopers are called in to separate father and son. And of the inevitable—of mother and son driving west in their Datsun to make a new home, a new life, away from Hunter; of Juan’s first taste of what “normal” could feel like . . . We see Juan going to Concord Academy, a stranger in a strange land, coming from a school that was a log cabin in the middle of hay fields, Juan without manners or socialization . . . going on to college at Tufts; spending a crucial week with his father; Hunter asking for Juan’s opinion of his writing; and he writes of their dirt biking on a hilltop overlooking Woody Creek Valley, acting as if all the horrible things that had happened between them had never taken place, and of being there, together, side by side . . . And finally, movingly, he writes of their long, slow pull toward reconciliation . . . of Juan’s marriage and the birth of his own son; of watching Hunter love his grandson and Juan’s coming to understand how Hunter loved him; of Hunter’s growing illness, and Juan’s becoming both son and father to his father . . .

Margot Fonteyn: Autobiography


Margot Fonteyn - 1976
    It is, of course, about dancing. About loving to dance as a small child in Shanghai. About ballet classes and ballet teachers, about practice and rehearsal. About making her debut--as a Snowflake, at fifteen--with the emerging Sadler's Wells Company, under the demanding rule of the brilliant and volatile Ninette de Valois. About her almost magical early success (at seventeen dancing Giselle; at eighteen, Swan Lake; at nineteen, Sleeping Beauty) and the effects on a young girl of sudden stardom. About the hard work of overcoming her limitations ("a face like a pudding," she says) and her weaknesses....And it is about the great triumphs in London, New York, Paris. About the great choreographers and dancers who worked with her and helped her: Frederick Ashton (he choreographed by flinging himself into swoops and twists that seemed to flow spontaneously from the music, suddenly saying, "What did I do? Now you do it"); the magnetic and sophisticated Robert Helpmann, of whom she was more than a little frightened "until the harmony of dancing with him began taking hold"; the handsome Michael Somes ("platoons of corps de ballet girls lost their hearts to him"). About Nureyev, who, when Fonteyn was already in her forties, galvanized her energies and talents and swept her into a new career. About her feeling for her great Russian counterpart, Ulanova. About getting older and never ceasing to dance; now, at fifty-seven, still dancing around the world.But even more, this is a book about the woman herself, who sees dancing as only a part of her life and perhaps not the most vital part--the Fonteyn who could not find love until in her thirties she suddenly met again (a visiting card brought to her dressing room; one hundred red roses) the man she had been in love with in her teens, the Panamanian diplomat Roberto Arias. And here is the infinitely moving story of their marriage, her shy assumption of her new role as ambassadress at the Court of St. James--and then, the near-fatal shooting in Panama that crippled her husband, and the drama and heroism of their life together since then.Throughout, with the freshest imaginable gift for anecdote, Margot Fonteyn takes us into her many worlds--the vicissitudes of backstage life on six continents, the tumult of Panamanian politics and revolution, the social pleasures (and embarrassments) of international fame.Above all, her autobiography is a revelation of a direct, warm-hearted person who believes that artists must take their art altogether seriously--and themselves not seriously at all; who finds her own fame difficult to grasp; who is worthy of what her audiences feel for her. Fonteyn is not only admired but loved. Her book--in its decency, its generosity, its sense of fun--makes clear why.

Family Secrets: The Dionne Quintuplets' Autobiography


Jean-Yves Soucy - 1997
    Now, for the first time, the three surviving Dionne quintuplets tell their story--from their bizarre, socially isolated childhood, to the physical and sexual abuse they suffered at the hands of their parents, to their inspiring triumph over their difficulties. Includes never-before-published photos.

A Life in the Day


Hunter Davies - 2017
     The Co-op’s Got Bananas! left our protagonist at the cusp of working for one of the world’s greatest newspapers – The Sunday Times . In this much-anticipated sequel, Hunter now looks back across five decades of successful writing to reflect on his colourful memories of the living in London during the height of the Swinging Sixties, becoming editor of Britain’s first colour weekend supplement The Sunday Times magazine; where he befriended the Beatles; and reporting on (and partying with) some of the biggest names in television, film and theatre of the day. As time moved on into the 1970s, '80s and '90s, Hunter encountered the likes of Sir Michael Caine, George Best, Melvyn Bragg, Joan Bakewell, Sir Sean Connery, Cilla Black, Paul Gascoigne, and Wayne Rooney to name a few. Hunter brings the story full circle to reflect on his years spent with the love of his life – the bestselling writer Margaret Forster, who sadly passed away in February 2016. This will not only be a colourful and enjoyable memoir of what it was like to be at the epicentre of Britain’s artistic heart, but also an emotional, heart-felt tribute to family, friends and colleagues. For those captivated by The Co-op’s Got Bananas!, this sequel is a must read.

Out of the Dust: Story of an Unlikely Missionary


Avis Goodhart - 2014
    She didn’t – and neither should you.Despite a background of childhood abuse, dyslexia, and marital infidelity, Avis took her first international mission trip at age fifty. The church, school, and orphanage she later founded in northern Peru, all products of both her pain and her radical obedience to the Lord, have brought thousands of others out of the dust. This compelling story of an ordinary woman who serves God in extraordinary ways will challenge, inspire, and empower you to: •Eliminate excuses from your life•Recognize that in God’s kingdom, availability matters more than ability•Allow your pain to produce – not prevent – your obedience•Serve the Lord with the same abandon shown by one unlikely missionaryNote: Proceeds from the sale of this book are sent to the author’s orphanage in Peru. About the Authors Avis Goodhart, founder of Go Ye Ministries, is a missionary, Bible teacher, and conference speaker who has blessed audiences across North, South, and Central America. Although she holds a B.S.Ed. and M.Ed. from the University of Arkansas, her primary qualifications include the pain and obstacles she’s encountered along the way. These provide both insight and passion for her work in bringing the lives of countless orphans, volunteers, and others out of the dust. Avis, a widow, has five children and twenty-two grandchildren.Marti Pieper’s prayer involvement moved her to assist Brent and Deanna Higgins in telling their son’s story in I Would Die for You, which became a young adult bestseller. Marti, who has a B.S.Ed. from Ohio State University and an M.Div. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, has written multiple books and often teaches at writers’ conferences.

Maria Tallchief: America's Prima Ballerina


Maria Tallchief - 1997
    . . . Her story will always be the story of ballet conquering America. It was and is an American romance."--The New Yorker  "Tallchief's autobiography provides us with many stories, insights, even passing remarks that shed light on both this crucial moment in dance history and Balanchine's elusive personality. Tallchief has now given us her definitive and convincing account of Balanchine as choreographer, teacher, husband, friend."--New York Times Book Review

The Making of a Country Lawyer: An Autobiography


Gerry Spence - 1996
    The author, who has defended Karen Silkwood and Randy Weaver among others, recounts his life growing up in Wyoming and the tragic event that caused him become an attorney.

Final Curtsey: A Royal Memoir by the Queen's Cousin


Margaret Rhodes - 2011
    Margaret was born into the Scottish aristocracy, into a now almost vanished world of privilege. Royalty often came to stay and her house was run in the style of Downton Abbey. In the Second World War years she ‘lodged' at Buckingham Palace while she worked for MI5. She was a bridesmaid at the wedding of her cousin, Princess Elizabeth to Prince Philip. Three years later the King and Queen attended her own wedding; Princess Margaret was a bridesmaid. In 1990 she was appointed as a Lady-in-Waiting to the Queen Mother, acting also as her companion, which she describes in touching detail. In the early months of 2002, she spent as much time as possible with her ailing aunt, and was at her bedside when she died at Easter that year. The next morning she went to Queen Elizabeth's bedroom to pray, and in farewell dropped her a final curtsey.This is an enthralling account of a special life, and a unique insight into the intimate moments of the British Royal family. The Queen Mother regarded Margaret Rhodes as her “third daughter”, and she has been extremely close to her cousins the Queen and Princess Margaret throughout their lives. The book is full of charming anecdotes, fascinating characters, and personal photographs and is an unparalleled insight into the private life of the British monarchy.

I Lived to Tell It All


George Jones - 1996
    From his roots in an impoverished East Texas family to his years of womanizing, boozing, brawling, and singing with the voice that made him a star, his story is a nonstop rollercoaster ride of the price of fame. It is also the story of how the love of a good woman, his wife Nancy, helped him clean up his act.

Minding the Store


Stanley Marcus - 1974
    Reprinted in hardcover in 1997 to celebrate the 90th anniversary of Neiman Marcus, it is now available for the first time in paperback. Mr. Marcus spent most of his life not only in helping to create a retailing enterprise renowned throughout the world as the epitome of quality, but also in setting high standards for the level of taste of all who desire “the better things in life.” In doing so he has played a key role in making Dallas itself a success. “Mr. Stanley,” as he was affectionately called by all his Neiman Marcus friends and associates, made The Store a legendary success. Although he retired from active involvement in Neiman Marcus in 1977, the influences of the philosophies of business he developed remained an important part of the training of Neiman Marcus personnel. Those basic principles—best exemplified by his belief in his father’s business philosophy—are the reasons Neiman Marcus is today recognized as the taste leader of American retailing.Minding the Store is a warm portrait of a man and an exuberant celebration of the store that has become the best-known landmark in Texas since the Alamo.

A Cure For Gravity: A Musical Pilgrimage


Joe Jackson - 1999
    . . . This is an intelligent, thoughtful look into the mind of an artist."--New York Times Book Review Since the release of his first best-selling album Look Sharp in 1979, Joe Jackson has forged a singular career in music through his originality as a composer and his notoriously independent stance toward music-business fashion. He has also been a famously private person, whose lack of interest in his own celebrity has been interpreted by some as aloofness. That reputation is shattered by A Cure for Gravity, Jackson's enormously funny and revealing memoir of growing up musical, from a culturally impoverished childhood in a rough English port town to the Royal Academy of Music, through London's Punk and New Wave scenes, up to the brink of pop stardom. Jackson describes his life as a teenage Beethoven fanatic; his early piano gigs for audiences of glass-throwing skinheads; and his days on the road with long-forgotten club bands. Far from a standard-issue celebrity autobiography, A Cure for Gravity is a smart, passionate book about music, the creative process, and coming of age as an artist.Ralph J. Gleason Music Book Award Finalist

21 Years Gone: The Autobiography


Jack Osbourne - 2006
    By the time Jack was 16, he was addicted to alcohol and prescription drugs, was hanging out with rock stars in LA and living a life that any teenager would aspire to—and then the reality show The Osbournes turned him into a global celebrity. As much as Jack enjoyed his fame, underneath it all he was still an awkward teenager, using his sense of humor as a protective shield. With fame and money came greater access to drugs and soon his addictions took a firmer hold on him and his behavior was soon out of control. In 21 Years Gone Jack writes with brutal frankness about his descent into addiction and the low point he reached when his mother Sharon was diagnosed with cancer. Scared that his she might die, Jack retreated further into his alcoholic shell, hating who he was, hating what he did. When Sharon realized what was happening she told Jack he had to go into rehab and slowly he turned his life around. Discovering a passion for extreme sports, he went from overweight and unfit to the lean young man he is today—courtesy of such adventures as running with the bulls in Pamplona, fighting a Thai martial arts expert, and scaling El Capitan, one of the world's toughest climbs.

Martin Johnson Autobiography


Martin Johnson - 2003
    His drive and physical presence mean that he is a natural leader on the pitch - and off it, too. In this, his long-awaited autobiography, he looks at the changing world of rugby. He explains why he led the England team to the brink of a strike in the autumn of 2000, and provides the definitive account of England's 2003 World Cup triumph, as well as Lions tours and all the goings-on that make rugby such a special sport. Hugely popular and respected, Martin Johnson has written vivid autobiography and a remarkable portrait of modern rugby.

The Good Life


Tony Bennett - 1998
    He's the postwar heartthrob who inspired hundreds of young girls to wear black outside St. Patrick's Cathedral on his wedding day. He's the darling of the MTV generation who made music history when, at the age of 68, he won the coveted Grammy Award for Album of the Year. He's the consummate artist known worldwide for his paintings. He's Tony Bennett, whose star shines brighter than ever as he enters his fifth decade of performing. Now, for the first time, this legend shares his amazing life story -- in a voice that's pure Tony Bennett: warm, resonant, and unforgettable. "Tony Bennett has not just bridged the generation gap, he has demolished it, " praised "The New York Times." Since his appearance with the Red Hot Chili Peppers of the 1993 MTV Video Awards, and the addition of his seminal video, 'Steppin' Out, ' to the MTV playlist, Bennett has become the hottest -- and coolest -- pop-culture icon for today's younger listeners, while remaining beloved by their parents and grandparents. An astonishing four generations have experienced the Tony Bennett magic -- the mesmerizing spell of a singer in love with singing, who embraces his audience with a soulful serenity communicated by both the man and his music.