These days, I read a lot of mom-oirs – enough to feel justified making up a word to describe the sub-genre clash of parenting book meets memoir. My twins are fifteen months old. They toddle and they’re fickle, irrational, urgent, tiny, and I love them. Just like the subtitle says.
Lawrence Wright’s journalistic writing is the perfect voice for the subject of Scientology. In the hands of most other writers, Scientology would float into the ether, a dark and unfathomable history left unread by sensible readers. That said, though Wright offers Scientology an even-handed approach, his book is full of strange stories, made stranger when compared to the seemingly (sometimes) sane and healthy lives of people who are associated with Scientology.
Fourteen-year-old Jenny shares her daily life with her diary "Dee." Jenny's younger brother Ezra is a common topic. You see, Ezra has autism and Jenny feels connected to him by an invisible cord which helps her keep track of him and his moods. Jenny also feels responsible for keeping Ezra out of trouble and for protecting him from those who don't understand Ezra's actions and autism.
Mary Roach is the author of several books of science journalism that cover the spectrum of sex, space travel, and cadavers. In Gulp we follow our food from mastication to, well here is an excerpt from the book, “Yes, men and women eat meals. But they also ingest nutrients.
Roshar is a world beset by powerful and devastating storms. Yet these are minor compared the desolation that is about to come this world. To face the oncoming devastation, a lowly slave, a would-be-thief, and a weary soldier, must find the strength within themselves to turn back the tide and become heroes.
Chris Gardner and his toddler son spent a year living on the streets of San Francisco, in and out of shelters and run down hotels. All while working in the financial district to get a job that would provide them with enough to live on.
Ultimately, Chris becomes the Chief Executive of Gardner Rich & Company, a multimillion-dollar brokerage. Today, Chris is an avid philanthropist and motivational speaker.
Walker Evans and Cynthia Rylant form a simply magical rapport in Something Permanent. Cynthia Rylant’s connection to the photographs is quite eerie given that the book came to fruition after the passing of Walker Evans. It’s as if she has studied the photographs for hours, interviewed Evans, painstakingly plucked the hidden words from the pictures, and shaped them into poems. The poems and photographs surrounded me, and as an outsider separated b
Imagine a world that doesn’t know its own rules. No cell phones. No Internet. No stock market. No money. No legal system.
I had to read this book twice to grasp its power. In its richness, it honestly deserves a third reading. The book jacket describes The Yellow Birds as "…the unforgettable story of two soldiers trying to stay alive." And it is that, but it’s also, and I would argue even more so, a cautionary tale.