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See below for a selection of the latest books from Biography: general category. Presented with a red border are the Biography: general books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Biography: general books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!
James M. Cain was among the prominent member of the hard-boiled school of writing that characterized the 1930s and 1940s, one of the masters of the genre that included Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler. His novels became such popular film noir classics as The Postman always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity, and Mildred Pierce, and his 1937 novel Serenade boldly portrayed its hero as a bisexual. Cain also taught journalism at various colleges in Maryland, wrote editorials for the New York World, and was for a brief time managing editor at The New Yorker. This is the first biography of James M. Cain written with the full cooperation of the late novelist's family.
Stone Motel: Memoirs of a Cajun Boy is the story of a gay preteen, his seven siblings, their violent father, overwhelmed mother, unstoppable grandmother, and the sordid array of customers they encounter at their family's roadside motel, situated in the hot, prairie town of Eunice, Louisiana. When half of the motel burns in a Christmastime fire, the family scrambles to get back on their feet and get things moving again. The fire rekindles the father's long-repressed violent nature, and while he attacks several of his children, he reserves his most ferocious beatings for his second son whom he feels needs fixing. When they were not working at the Stone Motel, Morris Ardoin and his siblings played canasta, an old ladies card game, which provided a refuge from the blistering summer sun and helped them avoid their mercurial father, a man unable to shake the horrors he had experienced as a child and, later, as a soldier. In this memoir, Ardoin provides an episodic narrative, detailing the sweet, sometimes awkward, often funny memories of his family, but moves beyond the personal to also document Louisiana life in the 1960s and 1970s. Through his descriptions of the regional French dialect spoken by his elders, to nostalgic images of places lost to time and progress, a unique portrait of a small community in Cajun Louisiana unfolds. Moving from childhood into adulthood, Ardoin's story speaks to what shapes a life-location, culture, language, heritage, and family.
Former New York Times correspondent John N. Herbers (1923-2017), who covered the civil rights movement for more than a decade, has produced Deep South Dispatch: Memoir of a Civil Rights Journalist, a compelling story of national and historical significance. Born in the South during a time of entrenched racial segregation, Herbers witnessed a succession of landmark civil rights uprisings that rocked the country, the world, and his own conscience. Herbers's retrospective is a timely and critical illumination on America's current racial dilemmas and ongoing quest for justice.Herbers's reporting began in 1951, when he covered the brutal execution of Willie McGee, a black man convicted for the rape of a white housewife, and the 1955 trial for the murder of Emmett Till, a black teenager killed for allegedly whistling at a white woman. With immediacy and first-hand detail, Herbers describes the assassination of John F. Kennedy; the death of four black girls in the Birmingham, Alabama, church bombing; extensive travels and interviews with Martin Luther King Jr.; Ku Klux Klan cross-burning rallies and private meetings; the Freedom Summer murders in Philadelphia, Mississippi; and marches and riots in St. Augustine, Florida, and Selma, Alabama, that led to passage of national civil rights legislation. This account is also a personal journey as Herbers witnessed the movement with the conflicted eyes of a man dedicated to his southern heritage but who also rejected the prescribed laws and mores of a prejudiced society. His story provides a complex understanding of how the southern status quo, in which the white establishment benefited at the expense of African Americans, was transformed by a national outcry for justice.
When World War II was over, a young bomber pilot with an itch for movement and action hung up his cap and learned another way to fly. Onstage with Martha Graham is the story of Stuart Hodes, a versatile and influential dancer who got his start with Martha Graham, an icon of modern dance. His memoir is a rare firsthand view of the dance world in the 1940s and through the end of the twentieth century. One of the few male dancers in Graham's company--and in the New York dance scene at the time--Hodes offers a unique perspective and a one-of-a-kind narrative. He describes how he fell into the art by chance, happening to walk into Graham's studio one day. He was soon hooked. He documents his experiences, travels, passions, and loves while learning from and performing with Graham, during which time he saw most of the United States, much of Europe, and some of Asia. Advancing quickly, he eventually danced as Graham's partner in Appalachian Spring, Deaths and Entrances, Every Soul Is a Circus, and Errand into the Maze. In his portrait of Martha Graham, who was the center of his dancing world, Hodes recounts conversations, revelations, bouts of temper and creativity, the daily ritual of deeply physical dancing, and the never-ending search for artistic validity. Direct, often humorous, and always authentic, Hodes shares his delight in dance as both hard work and a fantastic adventure.
When Nikki R. Van Hightower stepped into the position of Women's Advocate for the City of Houston in 1976, she quickly discovered that she had very little real power. And when the all-male city council cut her salary to $1 a year after she spoke at a women's rights rally, she gained full appreciation for just what she was up against.Nonetheless, before the job was abolished altogether two years later, Van Hightower went on to help orchestrate the enormously successful 1975 US National Women's Conference in Houston as part of the International Woman's Year, to help found the Houston Area Women's Center and establish its rape crisis and shelter programs, and to host a radio show where she publicly discussed issues of gender, race, and human rights. This eye-opening memoir offers a window into the world of Texas history and politics in the 1970s, where sexual harassment was not considered discrimination, where women's shelters did not exist, where no women were elected to city government, where women in the parks department were prohibited from working outdoors, and where women paid to use airport toilets while men did not. That world that may seem distant and slightly unreal today, so all the more reason to read Van Hightower's journey as a feminist. Her story will remind us that while much has been achieved in gender relations and women's rights, there is much that remains to be done.
America's top psychic medium reflects on his life of speaking to Spirit and the lessons he's learned along the way-from both the living and the dead. People who are not in the habit of talking with the dead have a hard time imagining what Matt Fraser's life is like. Based on the questions he gets, they seem to think he spends most of his time sitting cross-legged in a trance, maybe hovering a few inches off the ground, leaving his physical body behind as he journeys across the veil to the spirit realm. But it's not like that at all. The real Matt Fraser is just an ordinary twenty-eight-year-old guy...who happens to talk to dead people. Born into a psychic family, Matt carries on the legacy passed down from his late Grandmother Mary by connecting people to their dearly departed loved ones and delivering messages from the other side. His sold-out live group readings, television appearances, and popular private readings have allowed him to bring hope and healing to fans from around the world. Now, in When Heaven Calls, Matt opens up about his life as a psychic medium-including how he discovered his spiritual gift, what it's like to connect with souls on the other side, what communicating with the dead has taught him about embracing life, and how you can tap into your own intuitive awareness to manifest your dreams, goals, and desires.
Translated from the French by Benjamin Ivry, Simone Weil was one of the twentieth century's most original philosopher-critics, and as a result her legacy has been claimed by many. This memoir by Weil's niece is strong-willed and incisive and as close as we are likely to get to the real Simone Weil. Born into a freethinking Jewish family, Weil contributed many articles to Socialist and Communist journals and was active in the Spanish Civil War until her health failed. In 1940 she became strongly attracted to Roman Catholicism and the Passion of Christ. Most of her works, published posthumously, continue to inform debates in ethics, philosophy, and spirituality surrounding questions of sacrifice, asceticism, and the virtues of manual labor. Massively influential, Weil's writings were widely praised by such readers as Albert Camus, T. S. Eliot, Simone de Beauvoir, Pope John XXIII, Czeslaw Milosz, and Susan Sontag. Sylvie Weil recovers the deeply Jewish nature of Simone's thinking and details how her preoccupations with charity and justice were fully in the tradition of tzedakah, the Jewish religious obligation toward these actions.Using previously unpublished family correspondence and conversations, Sylvie Weil offers a more authentically personal portrait of her aunt than previous biographers have provided. At Home with AndrE and Simone Weil illuminates Simone's relationship to her family, especially to her brother, the great Princeton mathematician AndrE Weil. A clear-eyed and uncompromising memoir of her family, At Home with AndrE and Simone Weil is a fresh look at the noted French philosopher,mystic, and social activist.