Category Archives: Memoir

What Are You Waiting For?

17707883Title: What Are You Waiting For?
Author: Kristen Moeller
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: I like the author’s story a lot and would have loved this as a memoir, but the attempt at being a self-help book really didn’t work for me.

I find this book difficult to describe because I disagree with the book cover description. Purportedly, this is a book about how to change your life instead of waiting for your life to change. In reality, it largely focuses on the author’s own challenges throughout her life, from early drug addiction and bulimia to her recent loss of her house in a wildfire. She reframes many of these challenges as ways in which she was waiting for something. She also includes thought-provoking questions that challenge the reader to apply the lessons she’s learned to their own life. Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Memoir, non-fiction, Self-Help

Goodwill Tour

17294909Title: Goodwill Tour: Paying It Forward
Author: Keith Maginn
Source: from author for review
Rating: ★★★★☆
Review Summary: This book was a ton of fun with its well-written story of adventure and compassion. I found it both very moving and very relatable.

While many of us dream of taking an unscheduled road trip and many of us dream of making the world a better place, author Keith Maginn did both. With his friend Emily, he traveled through the Southeastern US with stops to volunteer and give away money to deserving strangers. In Goodwill Tour, Keith tells their story and the stories of those they helped. Continue reading

5 Comments

Filed under Memoir, Narrative Non-Fiction, non-fiction

Orange Is the New Black

6314763Title: Orange Is the New Black
Author: Piper Kerman
Source: bought on Amazon
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: Although this book certainly satisfied my desire to learn about different aspects of the human experience, I felt less connected to the author than I have when reading my favorite memoirs.

When Piper Kerman was young and stupid, she let an older girlfriend talk her into delivering a case of drug money. Although she was smart enough to get out of that relationship and went on to build a good life with a husband and a job, her past eventually caught up to her. This memoir describes the year she spent in a women’s prison as a result. Continue reading

21 Comments

Filed under Memoir, non-fiction

The Sh!t No One Tells You

16073050Title: The Sh!t No One Tells You: A Guide to Surviving Your Baby’s First Year
Author: Dawn Dais
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: This was often funny but also had sections that contained really useful advice and heart-warming empathy for new mothers.

“There comes a time in every new mother’s life when she finds herself staring at her screaming, smelly “bundle of joy” and wishing someone had told her that her house would reek of vomit, or that she shouldn’t buy the cute onesies with a thousand impossible buttons, or that she might cry more than the baby….Eschewing the adorableness that oozes out of other parenting books, Dais offers real advice from real moms—along with hilarious anecdotes, clever tips, and the genuine encouragement every mom needs in order to survive the first year of parenthood.” (Source) Continue reading

12 Comments

Filed under Humor, Memoir, non-fiction, Self-Help

My Beloved World

13642929Title: My Beloved World
Author: Sonia Sotomayor
Source: library
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: It was fascinating to learn so much about the background of such a famous woman, but I didn’t feel the sense of connection I love about so many other memoirs.

This autobiography describes Sonia Sotomayor’s life from her earliest memories to the time when she became a judge. It carefully avoids touching on her political opinions, focusing instead on personally formative experiences. These include her close relationship with her grandmother and her only recently repaired relationship with her mother. It includes a ton of inspiring sentences that I could see underlined in my kindle version, each of which lets you see a little part of Sonia Sotomayor’s personality that must have been crucial in making her dreams a reality. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Memoir, non-fiction

Some Nerve

17707684Title: Some Nerve: Lessons Learned While Becoming Brave
Author: Patty Chang Anker
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★★★
Review Summary: This enjoyable memoir was funny, relatable and incredibly inspiring.

What inspired Patty to try to become brave was the realization that her two daughters were inheriting her timid approach to life. Previously too afraid of failure to try new things, in this book Patty chronicles her adventures facing down her fears and those of others. With input from friends and experts, Patty shares her experience exploring everything from fears of public speaking to the fear of death.

Continue reading

13 Comments

Filed under Memoir, non-fiction