Autobiographies, memoirs, biographies, works by people fighting discrimination and the voices of marginalized people.
Here is a sampling of titles. Click the link above to see ALL the Memoirs.
Heavy by Kiese Laymon*Named a Best Book of 2018 by the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, NPR, Broadly, Buzzfeed (Nonfiction), The Undefeated, Library Journal (Biography/Memoirs), The Washington Post (Nonfiction), Southern Living (Southern), Entertainment Weekly, and The New York Times Critics* In this powerful, provocative, and universally lauded memoir--winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal and finalist for the Kirkus Prize--genre-bending essayist and novelist Kiese Laymon "provocatively meditates on his trauma growing up as a black man, and in turn crafts an essential polemic against American moral rot" (Entertainment Weekly). In Heavy, Laymon writes eloquently and honestly about growing up a hard-headed black son to a complicated and brilliant black mother in Jackson, Mississippi. From his early experiences of sexual violence, to his suspension from college, to time in New York as a college professor, Laymon charts his complex relationship with his mother, grandmother, anorexia, obesity, sex, writing, and ultimately gambling. Heavy is a "gorgeous, gutting...generous" (The New York Times) memoir that combines personal stories with piercing intellect to reflect both on the strife of American society and on Laymon's experiences with abuse. By attempting to name secrets and lies he and his mother spent a lifetime avoiding, he asks us to confront the terrifying possibility that few in this nation actually know how to responsibly love, and even fewer want to live under the weight of actually becoming free. "A book for people who appreciated Roxane Gay's memoir Hunger" (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel), Heavy is defiant yet vulnerable, an insightful, often comical exploration of weight, identity, art, friendship, and family through years of haunting implosions and long reverberations. "You won't be able to put [this memoir] down...It is packed with reminders of how black dreams get skewed and deferred, yet are also pregnant with the possibility that a kind of redemption may lie in intimate grappling with black realities" (The Atlantic).
Publication Date: 2019-03-05
The Anatomy of Silence by Cyra Perry Dougherty; Martin Burton (Contribution by)Before #MeToo, there was silence. Let's talk about that silence. The Anatomy of Silence is a collection of voices speaking out loud - often for the first time - about what it means to stay silent, to be silenced, and to break the silence that surrounds sexual violence. About how we are all complicit in creating that silence. It offers an unflinching account of how a culture of shame perpetuates a culture of violence against our bodies--and reflects on what it would take to create a world in which that silence -- once broken -- stays broken.
Publication Date: 2019-03-08
How We Fight for Our Lives by Saeed JonesFrom award-winning poet Saeed Jones, How We Fight for Our Lives--winner of the Kirkus Prize and the Stonewall Book Award--is a "moving, bracingly honest memoir" (The New York Times Book Review) written at the crossroads of sex, race, and power. One of the best books of the year as selected by The New York Times; The Washington Post; NPR; Time; The New Yorker; O, The Oprah Magazine; Harper's Bazaar; Elle; BuzzFeed; Goodreads; and many more. "People don't just happen," writes Saeed Jones. "We sacrifice former versions of ourselves. We sacrifice the people who dared to raise us. The 'I' it seems doesn't exist until we are able to say, 'I am no longer yours.'" Haunted and haunting, How We Fight for Our Lives is a stunning coming-of-age memoir about a young, black, gay man from the South as he fights to carve out a place for himself, within his family, within his country, within his own hopes, desires, and fears. Through a series of vignettes that chart a course across the American landscape, Jones draws readers into his boyhood and adolescence--into tumultuous relationships with his family, into passing flings with lovers, friends, and strangers. Each piece builds into a larger examination of race and queerness, power and vulnerability, love and grief: a portrait of what we all do for one another--and to one another--as we fight to become ourselves. An award-winning poet, Jones has developed a style that's as beautiful as it is powerful--a voice that's by turns a river, a blues, and a nightscape set ablaze. How We Fight for Our Lives is a one-of-a-kind memoir and a book that cements Saeed Jones as an essential writer for our time.
Publication Date: 2020-07-07
Ordinary Girls by Jaquira DíazOne of the Must-Read Books of 2019 According to O: The Oprah Magazine * Time * Bustle * Electric Literature * Publishers Weekly * The Millions * The Week * Good Housekeeping "There is more life packed on each page of Ordinary Girls than some lives hold in a lifetime." --Julia Alvarez In this searing memoir, Jaquira Díaz writes fiercely and eloquently of her challenging girlhood and triumphant coming of age. While growing up in housing projects in Puerto Rico and Miami Beach, Díaz found herself caught between extremes. As her family split apart and her mother battled schizophrenia, she was supported by the love of her friends. As she longed for a family and home, her life was upended by violence. As she celebrated her Puerto Rican culture, she couldn't find support for her burgeoning sexual identity. From her own struggles with depression and sexual assault to Puerto Rico's history of colonialism, every page of Ordinary Girls vibrates with music and lyricism. Díaz writes with raw and refreshing honesty, triumphantly mapping a way out of despair toward love and hope to become her version of the girl she always wanted to be. Reminiscent of Tara Westover's Educated, Kiese Laymon's Heavy, Mary Karr's The Liars' Club, and Terese Marie Mailhot's Heart Berries, Jaquira Díaz's memoir provides a vivid portrait of a life lived in (and beyond) the borders of Puerto Rico and its complicated history--and reads as electrically as a novel.
Publication Date: 2019-10-29
Disability Visibility by Alice Wong (Editor)One in five people in the United States lives with a disability. Some disabilities are visible, others less apparent--but all are underrepresented in media and popular culture. Now, just in time for the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, activist Alice Wong brings together this urgent, galvanizing collection of contemporary essays by disabled people. From Harriet McBryde Johnson's account of her debate with Peter Singer over her own personhood to original pieces by authors like Keah Brown and Haben Girma; from blog posts, manifestos, and eulogies to Congressional testimonies, and beyond: this anthology gives a glimpse into the rich complexity of the disabled experience, highlighting the passions, talents, and everyday lives of this community. It invites readers to question their own understandings. It celebrates and documents disability culture in the now. It looks to the future and the past with hope and love.