Biographies & Memoirs

Biographies & Memoirs

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1 Abagnale, Frank W Catch Me If You Can Film Tie
Bantam Books 2002 1863253920 / 9781863253925 Paperback Very Good 

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Blake, Ackroyd, Peter
2 Ackroyd, Peter Blake
Minerva 1996 0749391766 / 9780749391768 Paperback Good 
Book Description 16 pages of black-and-white and 24 pages of full-color illustrations, plus 73 illustrations in text. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition. 
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The Autobiography: The Kindness of Strangers, Adie, Kate
3 Adie, Kate The Autobiography: The Kindness of Strangers
Headline 2003 075531073X / 9780755310739 Paperback Very Good 
Kate Adie's story is an unusual one. Raised in post-war Sunderland, where l ife was 'a sunny experience, full of meat-paste sandwiches and Sunday schoo l', she has reported memorably and courageously from many of the world's tr ouble spots since she joined the BBC in 1969. THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS enc ompasses Adie's reporting from, inter alia, Northern Ireland, the Middle Ea st, Tiananmen Square and, of course, the Gulf War of 1991. It offers a comp elling combination of vivid frontline reporting and evocative writing and r eveals the extraordinarily demanding life of the woman who is always at the heart of the action. Although an intensely private person, Kate Adie also divulges what it's like to be a woman in a man's world - an inspiration to many working women. 
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Blue Suburbia: Almost a Memoir, Albanese, Laurie
4 Albanese, Laurie Blue Suburbia: Almost a Memoir
Harper Perennial 2004 0060565632 / 9780060565633 Paperback Near Fine 
Blue Suburbia is a searing memoir so fresh, original, and honest that it wi ll break your heart and renew your faith in the human spirit. With each spare stroke of her pen, Laurie Lico Albanese paints a vivid port rait of the blue-collar landscape of her childhood -- rusted swing sets, au to body shops, greasy hands, home improvements -- taking readers along for the wild, treacherous ride that leads to her escape. Her mother may stand s ilently at the sink year after year, or lie in the basement weeping, but Al banese is determined to flee the deadening certainty of her parents' lives. Her story does not disappoint us. By turns haunting, hilarious, tragic, and romantic, Blue Suburbia is the chronicle of a determined young woman who overcomes family limitations, socio-economic obstacles, and personal fears to build a happy -- and blessedly ordinary -- life. Written entirely in free verse, Blue Suburbia's cadence is a steady, rhythmic heartbeat, pulsing with pain, rebellion, love, and triumph. This is the story many of us might tell, if we had the courage. 
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Madam Secretary: A Memoir, Albright, Madeleine
5 Albright, Madeleine Madam Secretary: A Memoir
Miramax 2005 1401359620 / 9781401359621 Paperback Very Good 
In this outspoken and much-praised memoir, the highest-ranking woman in Ame rican history shares her remarkable story and provides an insider's view of world affairs during a period of unprecedented turbulence. A national best seller on its first publication in 2003, Madam Secretary combines warm humo r with profound insights and personal testament with fascinating additions to the historical record. 
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My Invented Country: A Memoir, Allende, Isabel
6 Allende, Isabel My Invented Country: A Memoir
Harper Perennial 2004 0060545674 / 9780060545673 Paperback Very Good+ 
Allende was inspired to write this glimmering and audacious memoir of her l ife as a traveler, exile, and immigrant by an eerie overlaying of dates. Sh e lost a country, she writes, on Tuesday, September 11, 1973, when a milita ry coup brought down Chile's democratic government, then headed by Salvador Allende, a cousin of her father's. And she gained a country on Tuesday, Se ptember 11, 2001, when the terrorist attacks induced her to recognize her d eep allegiance to the U.S., her adopted land. Drawing on the profoundly flu ent storytelling skills and canniness that make her fiction so scintillatin g and her memoirs so powerful, Allende retraces her circuitous path from Sa ntiago circa 1940 to today's San Francisco, remembering her family and crit iquing her country with equal measures of nostalgia and pain, fury and humo r. She observes curtly that in her eccentric family "happiness was irreleva nt," but she saves her sharpest remarks for her dissection of the Chilean s ensibility, zestfully analyzing Chile's obsession with class, all-out machi smo, habitual hypocrisy, intolerance, conservatism, clannishness, and gloom iness. She claims that Chileans love bureaucracy, "states of emergency," fu nerals, and soap operas, and that, in the Chile of her youth, "intellectual scorn for women was absolute." Allende's conjuring of her "invented," or i maginatively remembered, country is riveting in its frankness and compassio n, and her account of why and how she became a writer is profoundly moving. 
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7 Allison, Dorothy Two or Three Things I Know for Sure
Dutton Adult 1995 0525939210 / 9780525939214 1st Edition Hardcover Very Good/Very Good 
A highly collectible first edition/printing, a tight clean copy, protected in a new brodart wrapper, no inscriptions or markings, not price clipped an ex-library or a book of the month club edition; (SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR) Allison's much-praised novel Bastard Out of Carolina was inspired by her childhood in Greenville, S.C., but in this memoir, adapted from a performance piece, she cuts even closer to the bone. "We don't have a family Bible?" the author's fourth-grade self asks her aunt. "Child, some days we don't even have a family," comes the response. If Allison suffered horrors, notably rape by her stepfather when she was five, she has transmuted pain into stories, gaining control with maturity. Indeed, her title prefaces several hard-won aphorisms she uses to counterpoint her memories: "No one is as hard as my uncles had to pretend to be." Her mother was a beauty, as was her sister, but Dorothy, smart and plain, felt a legacy of ugliness, one she shook off slowly as her feminism and her heart led her to lesbian relationships, often painful, finally rewarding. She is now, in her 40s, a new mother, and her stories?and life?are a triumph of love over cruelty. Read it aloud and savor the rhythms. 
Price: 1500.00 JPY
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8 Alpers, Anthony The Life of Katherine Mansfield
Viking 1980 0670428051 / 9780670428052 Hardcover Very Good/Very Good 
Life Of Katherine Mansfield, The, by Alpers, Antony 
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Even the Stars Look Lonesome, Angelou, Maya
9 Angelou, Maya Even the Stars Look Lonesome
Bantam 1998 0553379720 / 9780553379723 Paperback Very Good+ 
Angelou examines the mixed blessings of success in one of the 20 brief, ane cdotal, and spicily provocative essays in this potent sister volume to her earlier collection, Wouldn't Take Nothing for My Journey Now (1993). During the 1950s, she tells us, she supported herself and her son as a nightclub singer. Expecting to be the center of attention at a party in her honor, sh e was peeved to find herself upstaged by a revered sports figure. Rememberi ng her hubris, Angelou reflects on how difficult it is to accept both the r ewards and demands of fame with grace, but now--regal, smart, eloquent, and witty--she has mastered that skill and makes good use of her visibility in many ways, including the sharing of these candid and lovingly crafted homi lies. Angelou considers marriage, motherhood, aging, African creativity and its influence, black history, and the value of art and solitude. 
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Every Second Counts, Armstrong, Lance
10 Armstrong, Lance Every Second Counts
Three Rivers Press 2004 0767914481 / 9780767914482 Paperback Near Fine 
A crisp clean softcover, no markings throughout: In It's Not about the Bike (Putnam, 2000), Armstrong related his battle with cancer and his incredible Tour de France victory. In this book, he gives a gripping account of his second through (record-tying) fifth victories at the Tour. (His latest triumph might be missed by less-than-thorough readers-it's at the very end, following the afterword.) One sees that Armstrong has grown up quite a bit since his first book. However, he still has a reckless streak, as witnessed by his fondness for diving into a place called Dead Man's Hole. There are glimpses into his personal life and reflections on his illness, but this memoir is unabashedly about the thrill of racing and winning with the U.S. Postal Team. Armstrong talks about his teammates with humility and admiration. He also deals frankly, yet with remarkable restraint, with the accusations of doping by the French. The cyclist still works with his Lance Armstrong Foundation against cancer, but readers get the sense that he is definitely looking forward. Warm and informal in tone, Every Second Counts is a must-read for cycling fans. 
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It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life, Armstrong, Lance
11 Armstrong, Lance It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life
Berkley Trade 2001 0425179613 / 9780425179611 Paperback Good 
People around the world have found inspiration in the story of Lance Armstr ong--a world-class athlete nearly struck down by cancer, only to recover an d win the Tour de France, the multiday bicycle race famous for its grueling intensity. Armstrong is a thoroughgoing Texan jock, and the changes brough t to his life by his illness are startling and powerful, but he's just not interested in wearing a hero suit. While his vocabulary is a bit on the he- man side (highest compliment to his wife: "she's a stud"), his actions will melt the most hard-bitten souls: a cancer foundation and benefit bike ride , his astonishing commitment to training that got him past countless hurdle s, loyalty to the people and corporations that never gave up on him. There' s serious medical detail here, which may not be for the faint of heart; fro m chemo to surgical procedures to his wife's in vitro fertilization, you wo n't be spared a single x-ray, IV drip, or unfortunate side effect. Athletes and coaches everywhere will benefit from the same extraordinary detail pro vided about his training sessions--every aching tendon, every rainy afterno on, and every small triumph during his long recovery is here in living colo r. It's Not About the Bike is the perfect title for this book about life, d eath, illness, family, setbacks, and triumphs, but not especially about the bike. 
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The Leap: A Memoir of Love and Madness in the Internet Gold Rush, Ashbrook, Tom
12 Ashbrook, Tom The Leap: A Memoir of Love and Madness in the Internet Gold Rush
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2000 0395839343 / 9780395839348 Hardcover Very Good/Very Good 
In 1996, Tom Ashbrook was an international reporter who, in a crisis of the soul, resolved to join an old college classmate on the Internet rocket rid e. THE LEAP tells the story of how he walked away from an enviable career t o launch a risky new business venture, and it could serve as a template for anyone with e-commerce fantasies. As a deeply felt tale of a man who risks and rediscovers his family and purpose, it also has all the hallmarks of a classic. Ashbrook undertakes his white-knuckle journey in pursuit of the d ream of an Internet startup without business experience, a technical backgr ound, or money. "I always knew you would do something crazy in the middle o f your life," his wife, Danielle, tells him as their relationship careens t hrough a dramatic rebirth of its own. "I just never knew it would be this k ind of crazy." Ashbrook's odyssey is also the great American joy ride -- th e story of two guys in the laboratory, in the garage, on the frontier, bett ing the ranch and then racing, half scared out of their wits, half giddy wi th adrenaline, toward the finish line. Success, when it finally comes, is s weet, but it is Ashbrook's story of self-transformation along the way that wins our hearts with its candor, its unabashed zeal, and the self-deprecati ng humor the author shares as he throws himself and his family over the edg e in the middle of life to reach out for a new beginning. 
Price: 600.00 JPY
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Once in a House on Fire - Children's Edition, Ashworth, Andrea
13 Ashworth, Andrea Once in a House on Fire - Children's Edition
Young Picador 2004 0330436597 / 9780330436595 Paperback Good 
In her engrossing memoir, Once in a House on Fire, Andrea Ashworth recalls growing up poor in a violent English household during the 1970s and 1980s. Ashworth's father drowned when she was just 5. Her mother then married a ma n who beat her frequently and made life miserable for the whole family. Whe n Ashworth's mother finally got rid of him, she married a small-time crimin al who also soon became violent. Throughout her childhood, the author strug gled to protect her little sisters from their stepfathers and kept the fami ly going when their mother could not function because of her injuries, depr essions, and blinding headaches. Ashworth and her family moved around quite a bit, often living in other people's houses, sleeping in cots or on floor s. They all suffered from the emotional and economic instability of their s ituation. Ashworth recalls the sunglasses her mother wore through cloudy da rk English winters to conceal her bruised eyes. She also remembers sneaking out of the house one day to run through a rich neighborhood, where she pau sed occasionally to open the mailboxes of the wealthy and smell their comfo rt and safety. Although Ashworth's story is all about loneliness and love gone wrong, the surprising thing is that this book is not always terribly sad-- there are interludes when the children have fun and in those sunny moments it seems probable that all of them, especially Andrea, will survive more or less intact. Ashworth recalls the details of her childhood vividly, in brief scenes. In one of those scenes, two sisters race down a cobbled street at breakneck speed. Each of them has one roller skate on--they are shar 
Price: 300.00 JPY
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Somewhere Towards the End: A Memoir, Athill, Diana
14 Athill, Diana Somewhere Towards the End: A Memoir
W. W. Norton & Company 2009 039306770X / 9780393067705 Hardcover Fine/Fine 
A crisp clean hardcover, no markings throughout: When it comes to facing old age, writes Athill, there are no lessons to be learnt, no discoveries to be made, no solutions to offer. As the acclaimed British memoirist (who wrote about her experiences as a book editor in Stet) pushes past 90, she realizes that there is not much on record on falling away and resolves to set down some of her observations. She is bluntly unconcerned with conventional wisdom, unapologetically recounting her extended role as the Other Woman in her companion's prior marriage--then explaining how he didn't move in with her until after they'd stopped having sex, which is why it was no big deal for her to invite his next mistress to move in with them to save expenses. She is equally frank in discussing how, as their life turns sad and boring, she copes with his declining health, just as she cared for her mother in her final years. Firmly resolute that no afterlife awaits her, Athill finds just enough optimism in this world to keep her reflections from slipping into morbidity--she may not offer much comfort, but it's a bracing read. 
Price: 700.00 JPY
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The Invention of Solitude, Auster, Paul
15 Auster, Paul The Invention of Solitude
Faber & Faber 1992 0571168620 / 9780571168620 Paperback Very Good 
'One day there is life...and then, suddenly, it happens there is death'. So begins Paul Auster's moving and personal meditation on fatherhood. The fir st section, 'Portrait of an Invisible Man', reveals Auster's memories and f eelings after the death of his father. In "The Book of Memory" the perspect ive shifts to Auster's role as a father. The narrator, 'A', contemplates hi s separation from his son, his dying grandfather and the solitary nature of writing and story-telling. 
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Winter Journal, Auster, Paul
16 Auster, Paul Winter Journal
Macmillan USA 2013 1250035759 / 9781250035752 Paperback Very Good 
A copy that has been read, but is in excellent condition. Pages are intact and not marred by notes or highlighting. The spine remains undamaged. 
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U and I : A True Story, BAKER, NICHOLSON
17 BAKER, NICHOLSON U and I : A True Story
Vintage 1992 0679735755 / 9780679735755 Paperback Very Good 
Nicholson Baker is most famous for Vox, the phone-sex novel Monica Lewinsky gave President Clinton, but the vastly superior U and I contains Baker's o wn dirty little secret: an obsession with John Updike. Not since Salieri in Peter Shaffer's Amadeus has one man's genius so publicly tormented another . Baker's ambition is a naked thing shivering with sensitivity, like a snai l bereft of its shell. Yet his book about himself thinking about Updike is as hilariously self-knowing as it is excruciatingly sincere. And Baker is n ot mad (not quite). He does have a few things in common with his idol: fict ion precociously published in The New Yorker, psoriasis, insomnia, a keen e ye for everyday minutiae, and a mischievously felicitous prose style. He is , however, funnier. Hunting for Updike at The Atlantic's 125th anniversary party, he gets brutally snubbed by Miss Manners--U and I is a fine comedy o f literary manners--and cheers up when Tim O'Brien chats with him. But when O'Brien mentions that he golfs with Updike, Baker is hurt: It didn't matter that I hadn't written a book that had won a National Book Award, hadn't written a book of any kind, and didn't know how to golf: sti ll, I felt strongly that Updike should have asked me and not Tim O'Brien. He justifies this reaction with a remarkably intricate series of associations between his life and Updike's, starting with the major impact a golf joke in an Updike essay once had on him. When Baker reads in the paper that his local cops offer to X-ray kids' candy for razors, he plausibly imagines the droll "Talk of the Town" piece Updike might have spun from the item, glumly noting th 
Price: 650.00 JPY
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My Animals and Other Family, Balding, Clare
18 Balding, Clare My Animals and Other Family
Penguin Books Ltd 2013 0241959756 / 9780241959756 Paperback Good 
"My Animals and Other Family" by Clare Balding is a funny, brave, tender st ory of self-discovery. 'I had spent most of my childhood thinking I was a d og, and suspect I had aged in dog years.' Clare Balding grew up in a rather unusual household. Her father a champion trainer, she shared her life with more than 100 thoroughbred racehorses, mares, foals and ponies, as well as an ever-present pack of boxers and lurchers. As a toddler she would happil y ride the legendary Mill Reef and take breakfast with the Queen. She and h er younger brother came very low down the pecking order. Left to their own devices, they had to learn life's toughest lessons through the animals, and through their adventures in the stables and the idyllic Hampshire Downs. F rom the protective Candy to the pot-bellied Valkyrie and the frisky Hattie, each horse and each dog had their own character and their own special part to play. The running family joke was that "women ain't people". Clare had to prove them wrong, to make her voice heard - but first she had to make su re she had something to say. "Moving, funny and larger than life". (Michael Morpurgo). "Magical, enchanting, riotously eccentric". ("Daily Mail"). "Fu nny and unexpectedly wise. Balding has lots of good stories to tell. It is impossible not to admire her honesty". ("Mail on Sunday"). "The reading equ ivalent of snuggling by the fire with a labrador". ("The Guardian"). Clare Balding is an award-winning broadcaster and writer. She has been a lead pre senter for the Olympics, Paralympics, Winter Olympics and Commonwealth Game s. For more than twelve years, she has hiked across the countryside for the 
Price: 500.00 JPY
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Dr. Laura : The Unauthorized Biography, Bane, Vickie L.
19 Bane, Vickie L. Dr. Laura : The Unauthorized Biography
Thomas Dunne Books 1999 0312205309 / 9780312205300 1st Edition Hardcover Fine/Fine 
The word unauthorized pretty much guarantees that a biography isn't going t o be flattering, and, no surprise, Dr. Laura Schlessinger, radio's finger-w agging "shrink" (her doctorate is in physiology), gets a pretty good drubbi ng here. In this case, though, the author didn't have to work all that hard to dig up the dirt; Schlessinger's well-publicized antics over the years g ive Bane plenty of fodder. Those who have read the unflattering piece about Dr. Laura in a 1998 issue of Vanity Fair will find much of this material f amiliar: Schlessinger hasn't spoken to her mother and sister for years, she is notoriously thin-skinned, and she seems to have used a stiletto on almo st everyone she has ever worked with in radio. (Many of those former collea gues were more than willing to be quoted by name in these pages.) Bane, who se writing style can best be described as clunky, does make attempts at eve n-handedness: she confirms that Schlessinger is bright, a quick study, and a natural on the radio, and she includes comments by those who have a more favorable opinion of Dr. Laura. But what will attract readers, especially t hose who don't like Laura, are the many dishy details that expose where Sch lessinger's public persona and private actions clash. 
Price: 900.00 JPY
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20 Barakat, Ibtisam Tasting the Sky: A Palestinian Childhood
Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2007 0374357331 / 9780374357337 1st Edition Hardcover Near Fine/Near Fine 
A crisp clean first edition (as stated) no markings throughout: In a spare, eloquent memoir, Barakat recalls life under military occupatio n. In 1981 the author, then in high school, boarded a bus bound for Ramalla h. The bus was detained by Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint on the West Ban k, and she was taken to a detention center before being released. The episo de triggers sometimes heart-wrenching memories of herself as a young child, at the start of the 1967 Six Days' War, as Israeli soldiers conducted raid s, their planes bombed her home, and she fled with her family across the bo rder to Jordan. She also recalls living under occupation and the thrill of being able to attend the United Nations school for refugees. The political upheaval is always in the background, but for young Barakat, much of the dr ama was in incidents that took place in everyday life.^B What makes the mem oir so compelling is the immediacy of the child's viewpoint, which depicts both conflict and daily life without exploitation or sentimentality. An ann otated bibliography will help readers fill in the facts. Hazel Rochman Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved 
Price: 1000.00 JPY
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