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A Reader of Fictions: Carry On Wayward Son - Kansas

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Carry On Wayward Son - Kansas

I'm in the mood to lose myself in the story of someone else's life. Does anyone have any good biography/memoir recommendations? I've started reading Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood, but the writing's a little flowery for me. I don't want something heartbreakingly sad or violent, although I would be interested in reading about someone living with a painfull disease or similar, and would like something emotionally resonating and possibly funny. Anyone have any suggestions?

Here are some of my favorite bios:

Oh the Glory of It All by Sean Wilsey:
Oh the Glory of It All, besides having an awesome title, follows Wilsey through growing up in San Francisco with an often drugged, celebrity knowing Mom, and divorced Dad who almost marries Danielle Steele, and through high school as he gets kicked out of prep schools until he finally attends one where they have to do physical labor and scream their feelings out loud. Another fun fact: his mom wrote a counter memoir "Oh the Hell of It All".

Cheaper by the Dozen by Frank B. Gilbreth Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey:
I love the wackiness of this big family and all of the fun things they do, such as when their Dad paints messages in Morse Code around their lighthouse summer house and they have to learn Morse Code to be the first to decode it.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert:
This heartfelt memoir of a woman's physical and mental trip to recover from a divore and find herself is wonderfully written. Gilbert did a great job writing this and I connected with her and enjoyed reading about someone who shared so honestly the reality of her life.

My Horizontal Life: a Collection of One-Night Stands by Chelsea Handler:
This memoir of Handler's wacky family and run-ins with sex had me laughing out loud. Reading this is a great stress reliever.

The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs:
I learned a lot about what is in the bible through this book and found it hilarious to follow A.J.'s very real attempts to uphold different facets of the bible in literal ways. A.J. Jacobs does a great job researching and talking with people of different viewpoints on the Bible. This book is funny but he does a serious job of attempting this undertaking.

Patriots: the Vietnam War Remembered from All Sides, edited by Christian G. Appy:
This book is a collection of short interviews of people from all different positions from both sides in the Vietnam War. It's incredible and moving and great to read piece by piece. There's a woman who works as a nurse in a Viet Cong hospital that has to relocate sometimes to avoid detection. There are all sorts of stories in here, and they are organized into chapters based on when they were during the war, with explanation at the beginning of each chapter as to what was going on. Try this and see the Vietnam War through many different viewpoints.


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