Category Archives: memoir

Hermione Ranfurly, “To War with Whitaker”

Well, hello! Yes, I’m back. I know, I left without saying good-bye, and that was rude. I’m sorry. I left you at Outlander, right? I’ve read a lot since then — I know you have, too — and guess what? … Continue reading

Posted in memoir | 14 Comments

Marie Vassilitchikov, “Berlin Diaries 1940-1945”

I cast around rather wildly to find background reading for a recent week in Berlin. Friends loaned or gave us novels, guidebooks, recommendations. Beloved Husband settled on a massive history of Prussia called The Iron Kingdom and I spent a … Continue reading

Posted in German, memoir | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Hilary Mantel, “Giving Up the Ghost”

Well, a lot of things have become clearer since I read Hilary Mantel’s memoir Giving Up the Ghost. It comes as no surprise to realize that Mantel is really, really smart. It seems that her academic career could have been … Continue reading

Posted in anglophilia, memoir | Tagged | 4 Comments

Nigel Slater, “Toast”

Like Pig and Pepper, Toast was a surprise present, shoved through the mail slot with a bulb catalog and a flyer from Time Warner. And like Pig and Pepper, a total hit: I love reading about food. I’m not a … Continue reading

Posted in anglophilia, funny, memoir | 2 Comments

Rosie Schaap, “Drinking with Men”

Maybe it’s a little late for this, but I need to come clean. Sometimes, I read books written by friends or acquaintances. And then I review them. And then I don’t tell you that I know the author. (But I … Continue reading

Posted in friend, memoir | Tagged | 6 Comments

Alexandra Fuller, “Cocktail Hour under the Tree of Forgetfulness”

After the brilliance of the title Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight for Alexandra Fuller’s earlier memoir, you might find Cocktail Hour under the Tree of Forgetfulness  a little clunky. In the same way, I began Cocktail Hour… with some skepticism. Was … Continue reading

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Beryl Markham, “West with the Night”

How you read affects what you read. So the fact that I began West with the Night in bed in a tent in Kenya both gave it great relevance, and made my reading distracted and scattered. Because of course you … Continue reading

Posted in classic, memoir | 4 Comments

Will Schwalbe, “The End of Your Life Book Club”

I’m cheating here. Normally I don’t blog about a book unless I finish it, and my bookmark is stuck on page 292 of 326 in The End of Your Life Book Club. I just couldn’t face the chapter entitled “My … Continue reading

Posted in memoir, nonfiction | Tagged | 5 Comments

Ruth Reichl, “Tender at the Bone”

You know those books that you always know you’ll read eventually? Tender at the Bone was one of those for me.  I’ve enjoyed Ruth Reichl’s writing ever since she became the restaurant critic for the New York Times in 1993, … Continue reading

Posted in best seller, memoir | Tagged | 2 Comments

Jill Ker Conway, “The Road from Coorain”

Why do we read memoir anyway? Whose life is interesting enough to, well, deserve that I should spend several hours on it, instead of alphabetizing my spice cupboard or for that matter, writing my own memoir?  Who is going to provide … Continue reading

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