Once Upon a Utopia | Social Science Reviews, May 1, 2016

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Four riveting accounts that explore some of the many communities in America that have set out over the years to find a new way of life, away from it all, by setting up their own personal utopias and communes. Some, needless to say, worked out better than others.

Boomer Memoirs | Social Science Reviews, May 1, 2016

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Three new memoirs from boomers address in different perspectives the final frontiers of old age, illness and death, and what has happened along the way. Which approach works best, looking back, analyzing the present, or gazing forward?

A Different Kind of Daughter by Maria Toorpakai | LJ Review

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This astonishing and inspirational memoir chronicles more than Maria’s life; it also relates the story of her parents, an incredible couple, who, despite the odds, fought for the betterment and education of themselves, their children, and the Pakistani people.

Count Your Chickens | Urban Farming & Homesteading

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With the spread of farming and homesteading from rural and suburban areas to urban lots and rooftops, these 35 titles will help patrons sow the cream of their own crops.

Keeping Score | Memoir

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Fall approaches. The boys of summer are winding it all down on the diamond and the gridiron guys are gearing up. Since my sport is reading, I’ve tallied up the major themes and attributes of this month’s six memoirs. Here are the scores: family stories six/six; tales of resilience six/six; woman memoirists five/six; damages of […]

Pop Culture Advisory: Orange Is the New Black

With the success of Orange Is the New Black, take a look at other tales of women in prison.

Surviving Genocide: Memoirs of the Unthinkable | The Reader’s Shelf, April 15, 2013

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The men and women who survived genocide and helped others to survive deserve our everlasting admiration. Their heroic, suspenseful, and inspirational accounts are harrowing but vitally important reading.

James Beard Foundation Award finalists

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Cookbook and food writing finalists for the James Beard Awards.

Memoir Short Takes: Food, Drink, and DNA

Drinking with Men

The first few weeks of a new year make for a good time to review the work this column does. Reviewing memoir is tricky stuff, and a review is not a referendum on the writer’s life. A loathsome life story beautifully told? Great. A life of virtue predictably related? Nope. Like I’ve said before: it’s […]

War Trauma: Military Memoirs

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by Martha Bauder, LTC, US Army Reserve Physician Castner, Brian. The Long Walk: A Story of War and the Life That Follows. Doubleday. 2012. c.224p. ISBN 9780385536202. $25.95. MEMOIR “The Crazy” is what former Air Force explosives ordinance officer Castner calls the feeling that assailed him after his return from several deployments to the Middle […]