History, Biography, and Politics

This is one of the strangest—and best-written—memoirs I’ve ever read. It tells the story of Michael’s aunt Harriet who, along with her husband Irving, is a very successful screenwriter. (She and Irving wrote Norma Rae, among other big movies.) Because Harriet has no children of her own, and because she senses “great potential” in Michael, she zeroes in on him when he’s still a very young child and essentially steals him (emotionally speaking) from his own family. Great awkwardness and emotional confusion follows. - Rico

The Mighty Franks: A Memoir Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780374537807
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - May 29th, 2018

A lively and engaging biography of the first openly gay man elected to public office in the United States, a man fiercely committed to protecting all minorities. “Meticulously researched and beautifully written, Lillian Faderman’s Harvey Milk is a revelation. This insightful work provides context to Milk’s life as a gay icon and illuminates how his experience was deeply informed by his own Jewish identity.”—Cleve Jones

Harvey Milk: His Lives and Death (Jewish Lives) Cover Image
$25.00
ISBN: 9780300222616
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Yale University Press - May 22nd, 2018

This book is laugh-out-loud amazing! Ramsey tells her story of being boosted suddenly into the limelight via YouTube and of all of the good (and bad) things she was able to use her platform to discuss. For those who are struggling to learn about the racial morass this country finds itself in, or wanting to find a way to speak compassionately to those who are a little dumb about it, this is the book for you. - Jax

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Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781538761038
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - May 22nd, 2018

Tessa Fontaine’s The Electric Woman is enthralling. Moving between the sustained emergency of a collapse in her mother’s health, the complicated, flawed relationship she has with her mother, and her 5 months as a crew member in the traveling sideshow the World of Wonders, Fontaine writes of the layer after layer of heartache and grind. With lovely, clear prose, she invites the reader in to her attempts to explore and escape reality through the hard and fascinating traveling sideshow life. A tenderly written, captivating memoir. - Chorel

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The Electric Woman: A Memoir in Death-Defying Acts Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780374158378
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar Straus and Giroux - May 1st, 2018

Right off the bat, I felt a connection with Paul, who keeps a journal to track her books. I’m fantastically obsessed with doing this (I have a database! she admits nerdily). Each chapter is centered around a book that has made a difference in her life at one time or another. What I particularly enjoyed is that you don’t have to have read each mentioned book to relate. Perfect for any bibliophile. - Karena

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My Life with Bob: Flawed Heroine Keeps Book of Books, Plot Ensues Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250182548
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador USA - May 1st, 2018

“Here, Gabourey Sidibe cements her status as gives-zero-effs queen of Hollywood and perceptive best friend in your head. Frank, funny, and insanely charming, these stories reveal the girl behind the gown and show Hollywood for what it really is: A wet t-shirt contest of an industry that sometimes redeems itself by picking the right star. Gabby is that star, and you'll root for her on every page—we are blessed by her honesty, passion and wit.” —Lena Dunham

This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781328915801
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - May 1st, 2018

Viet Thanh Nguyen, a Pulitzer Prize–winningauthor and refugee himself, has brought together a powerful collection of essays from writers with a myriad of immigrant experiences. Twenty pieces explore the complexities of leaving, of arriving, and of the barriers both seen and unseen that exist far beyond the actual crossing. Reyna Grande, Joseph Azam, Fatima Bhutto, Vu Tran—their stories demand that we see the refugee crisis for what it is, the real lives of so many affected, persevering and thriving in spite of it. - Melinda

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The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives Cover Image
By Viet Thanh Nguyen (Editor), David Bezmozgis (Contributions by), Thi Bui (Contributions by), Reyna Grande (Contributions by), Aleksandar Hemon (Contributions by), Vu Tran (Contributions by)
$25.00
ISBN: 9781419729485
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Abrams Press - April 10th, 2018

See chronicles her ancestors’ immigrant experience coming from China to California. Spanning 100 years of family history, from dynamiting railroads into mountainsides to rubbing shoulders with the Hollywood elite, See shares the triumphs and the devastations along the way. I was charmed by See’s honest, often emotional rendering of her family’s remarkable journey. - Jade

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On Gold Mountain: The One-Hundred-Year Odyssey of My Chinese-American Family Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780307950390
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - February 7th, 2012

I think I raved to everyone who would listen about how much I loved this book. Lockwood is hilarious, yet her words are thoughtful and heartfelt as she describes her ‘walking warning label’ of a mother and her priest father who has a habit of dropping his collar (and pants) at the door. Families aren’t perfect and Lockwood’s is no different. - Karena

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Priestdaddy: A Memoir Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780399573262
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - May 1st, 2018

A book about the past mixed with the politics of the today, all told through captivating reporting. It celebrates the true thrilling story of the people who smuggled old, rare books and scripts out of West Africa as they confront the new dangers of the present. Badass Librarians is both inspiring and page-turning. - Ian

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The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu and Their Race to Save the World's Most Precious Manuscripts Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781476777412
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - April 4th, 2017

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