Biography

In the Land of Men: A Memoir by Adrienne Miller - Book Review

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$28.99
ISBN: 9780062682413
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Published: Ecco - February 11th, 2020

Adrienne Miller's mid-'90s' arrival in the literary "land of men" was met mostly with cynicism, for how young she was, how attractive, and how she came just out of college, a reaction she does not much dispel in this memoir. What Miller does argue, though, is the attitudes with which the other, very male editors at GQ and Esquire regard her, and how that devolves when her job becomes to work entirely at the behest of David Foster Wallace's brilliant madness. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride - Book Review

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$16.00
ISBN: 9781594481925
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Published: Riverhead Books - February 7th, 2006

McBride's lyrical search for his heritage soars on multiple levels: a confessional memoir; a study of racism in the mid-20th Century South; an inquiry into Judaism and Christianity; and, most importantly, a young man's exploration of his mother's past. McBride's deeply-felt quest ends with a compassionate embrace of family. ~ Reviewed by Mike Hare


The Dalai Lama: An Extraordinary Life by Alexander Norman - Book Review

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$30.00
ISBN: 9780544416581
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Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - February 25th, 2020

This is an excellent exploration of the Dalai Lama and Tibetan culture in general, as well as a history of 20th century Tibet. It is well researched and full of interesting stories. This is for anyone who wants the backstory of this great man or for those interested in Tibetan culture. It is a rich and varied tale of a world far removed from 21st century America. The irony of the horror of the Chinese invasion is that the world benefited enormously from the diffusion of the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism and from the expanded role the Dalai Lama was forced into. ~ Reviewed by Chris Morrow


Finding Dora Maar: An Artist, an Address Book, a Life by Brigitte Benkemoun - Book Review

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By Brigitte Benkemoun, Jody Gladding (Translated by)
$24.95
ISBN: 9781606066591
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Published: Getty Publications - May 19th, 2020

Finding Dora Maar, a bestseller last year in France and translated lucidly into English by Vermonter Jody Gladding, is a delicious work of biography, memoir, detective narrative and cultural history. Benkemoun bought on eBay a vintage Hermes diary for her husband. When it arrived, she found inside an address book with entries for Cocteau, Chagall, Giacometti, Poulenc, Balthus, Éluard, Breton, Brassaï, Lacan—an exhaustive list of the giants of Parisian modernism. Through some detective work, Benkemoun discovers that its previous owner was none other than Dora Maar, Picasso’s “weeping woman.” In 1920’s Paris Maar was a brilliant young Surrealist photographer before she became Picasso’s official mistress, and her anguished portraits became some of the most recognizable of Picasso’s paintings, forever eclipsing her own efforts in photography and painting. This gripping book charts Dora’s life--the bright beginning of her artistic career, her masochistic relationship with the brilliant and cruel Picasso, and her late reactionary years of seclusion— brilliantly through the entries of her address book forming a constellation of the lives of the Parisian avant garde. ~ Reviewed by Dafydd Wood


Hollywood Park: A Memoir by Mikel Jollett - Book Review

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$27.99
ISBN: 9781250621566
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Published: Celadon Books - May 26th, 2020

California and Oregon in the last quarter of the 20th century. A notorious cult. Drug abuse. Aside from a turbulent upbringing, Mikel Jollett's amazing memoir has almost nothing in common with Angela's Ashes. And yet. Reading Hollywood Park reminded me of my experience reading Frank McCourt's stunning first memoir. Which is to say, I very highly recommend it. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


The Heart: Frida Kahlo in Paris by Marc Petitjean - Book Review

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By Marc Petitjean, Adriana Hunter (Translated by)
$25.00
ISBN: 9781590519905
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Published: Other Press - April 9th, 2020

Frida Kahlo brought to blazing life. Shortly before World War II, she made her only trip to Paris and had brief affairs with, among others, the author's father. Kahlo's experience helped her break free from her husband, Diego Rivera, and become one of the 20th Century's most iconic artists.


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