Our guide to the essential Kurt Vonnegut books that cement his reputation as one of literature’s funniest and most profound writers. If you're feeling overwhelmed by the number of great biographies out there, you can also take our 1-minute quiz below to narrow it down quickly and get a personalized biography recommendation . The top two books on this list – Night (The Night Trilogy, #1) and The Autobiography of Malcolm X – are both fantastic autobiographies. For more ideas on some good biographies to read, check out the full list of the top 70 biography books of all time. Nasar thoroughly explores Nash’s prestigious career, from his beginnings at MIT to his work at the RAND Corporation — as well the internal battle he waged against schizophrenia, a disorder that nearly derailed his life. Just sign up to get your free download. However, the book that I think is the all time best biography isn’t even mentioned. Here’s another bio that will reshape your views of a famed historical tyrant, though this time in a surprisingly favorable light. Elie Wiesel. Rated 4.3 over 147,100 reviews, 192 pages. About 100 Biographies & Memoirs to Read in a Lifetime Honestly, it would take many lifetimes to read even a small fraction of the best biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs ever written. Maegen Rose is a school librarian in New York. Though many of us will be familiar with the name Mao Zedong, this prodigious biography sheds unprecedented light upon the power-hungry “Red Emperor.” Chang and Halliday begin with the shocking statistic that Mao was responsible for 70 million deaths during peacetime — more than any other twentieth-century world leader. Thank you for the recommendation though. If all that you know of Princess Margaret comes from watching The Crown, this new biography offers an even more compelling and intimate portrait of the bad girl of Buckingham Palace.. A woman who mingled with the counterculture (while her sister Queen Elizabeth II assumed reign of the British monarchy), she's known as much for her cattiness and misbehavior as she is for being a … Perhaps these books deserve spot there too: Herrera’s 1983 biography of renowned painter Frida Kahlo, one of the most recognizable names in modern art, has since become the definitive account on her life. Indeed, no one exists in a vacuum, not even Shakespeare — hence the conscious depiction of him in this book as a “will in the world,” rather than an isolated writer shut up in his own musty study. Grann tells the story of Percy Fawcett, the archaeologist who vanished in the Amazon along with his son in 1925, supposedly in search of an ancient lost city. Audible Audiobook. Krakauer’s biography of McCandless retraces his steps back to the beginning of the trek, attempting to suss out what the young man was looking for on his journey, and whether he fully understood what dangers lay before him. First Published: 1955. At the risk of sounding cliché, the best biographies do exactly this: bring their subjects to life. I’ll add them in and let’s see if they make it onto the short-list with the next update . View Gallery 80 Photos 1 of 80 Everest Disaster by Jon Krakauer Print | eBook | Audiobook The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot Print | Audiobook Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! 10 Best Lumbar Support Cushions That All Desk Workers Need. Anyone who grew up reading Little House on the Prairie will surely be fascinated by this tell-all biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Fans of Adam McKay’s Vice, this is the book for you. Rated 4.3 over 951,200 reviews, 466 pages. Other top-ranked options include famous autobiographies like The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank and I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou. The top-ranked biographies on my list (and a good place to start) are Night (The Night Trilogy, #1), The Autobiography of Malcolm X and The Complete Maus (graphic novel). The Ten Best Rock Biographies Show all 10. This list of the greatest biographies of all time covers the arts, literature, politics, science and history, and includes household names such as Barack Obama, Nelson Mandela and Helen Keller. Rated 4.5 over 12,500 reviews, 370 pages. Rated 4.5 over 506,500 reviews, 208 pages. Wallow in the majesty of the greatest Italian Renaissance artists, such as Michelangelo, Leonardo, Giotto, Brunellschi, and others of lofty, lasting influence. The Ramsays are enjoying a summer on the Isle of Skye; the children, husband and guests are all effortlessly entertained by the bewitching Mrs. Ramsay. With that, please enjoy the 30 best biographies of all time — some historical, some recent, but all remarkable, life-giving tributes to their subjects. You’re welcome, Chandler. When Enrique was only five years old, his mother left Honduras for the United States, promising a quick return. The Ten Best Rock Biographies 142009.bin. ... Hinch Yourself Happy: All The Best Cleaning Tips To Shine Your Sink And Soothe Your Soul Mrs Hinch. Many people have instilled within themselves the notion that successful individuals do not go through hardships. What are your favorite biographies for teens? The best rock star biographies shed light on those glory days, answering questions you didn’t know you wanted answering. Compiled just after the superstar’s untimely death in 2016, this intimate snapshot of Prince’s life is actually a largely visual work — Shahidi served as his private photographer from the early 2000s until his passing. And while Kahlo no doubt endured a great deal of suffering (a horrific accident when she was eighteen, a husband who had constant affairs), the focal point of the book is not her pain. Night. From the origins and development of its individual elements (energy, mass, and light) to their ramifications in the twentieth century, Bodanis turns what could be an extremely dry subject into engaging fare for readers of all stripes. Five months later, McCandless was found emaciated and deceased in his shelter — but of what cause? Rated 4.3 over 882,900 reviews, A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster, 368 pages. The story how she repeatedly tried to put it together from ~20 years of age over the years, until she finally got cancer and finally matured enough to write her masterpiece. From there, they unravel Mao’s complex ideologies, motivations, and missions, breaking down his long-propagated “hero” persona and thrusting forth a new, grislier image of one of China’s biggest revolutionaries. A Promised Land Barack Obama. Marie Sklodowska met Pierre Curie when she came to work in his lab in 1891, and just a few years later they were married. This biography of esteemed mathematician John Nash was both a finalist for the 1998 ... 2. I’ve scoured the internet for lists of top biographies, I’ve taken your suggestions on the best memoirs and best autobiographies you’ve ever read and I’ve collected them here in the definitive list of best biography books ever written. "Let us now praise famous men, and our fathers that begat us.” From this line derives the central issue of Agee and Evans’ work: who truly deserves our praise and recognition? Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton is not only the inspiration for a hit Broadway musical, but also a work of creative genius itself. The best biographies seem to be the greatest value of all, as they condense the learnings of an entire human life into readable form. They’re often easy to read and they’re a wonderful way to experience the world through the eyes of someone who may see and have experienced things very differently. It divulges the details of Jobs’ little-known childhood and tracks his fateful path from garage engineer to leader of one of the largest tech companies in the world — not to mention his formative role in other legendary companies like Pixar, and indeed within the Silicon Valley ecosystem as a whole. Napoleon Hill interviewed and studied the big names in business in Depression-era America. In this hauntingly elegiac book, Woolf evokes the painful inevitability of timeâ s passage. Inspirational biographies, however, provide insight into life […] Memoirs of Hadrian is a wonderful book but it’s a novel (historical + philosophical fiction) rather than an accurate account of Hadrian’s life, which is why it doesn’t appear on this list. It covers his heroic code-breaking efforts during the war, his computer designs and contributions to mathematical biology in the years following, and of course, the vicious persecution that befell him in the 1950s — when homosexual acts were still a crime punishable by English law. His resulting book, initially published in 1937, is a look at the mindset of those who succeeded in achieving great wealth. In this gripping biography, Laura Hillenbrand tracks Zamperini’s story from beginning to end… including how he embraced Christian evangelism as a means of recovery, and even came to forgive his tormentors in his later years. Click here to check out my ranked list of the 70 best biographies of all time. … Another mysterious explorer takes center stage in this gripping 2009 biography. Rather, it should weave a narrative and tell a story in almost the same way a novel does. From tales of debauchery to gritty insights into life on the road, the best biographies share the low points as well as the highs. Lovely. Other best selling autobiographies include Night (The Night Trilogy, #1) by Elie Wiesel and The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. Want more ideas? Send yourself a FREE printable weekly planner template you can use to set every week up for success... Want 6 FREE Interactive Memory Templates? Their passion for each other bled into their passion for their work, and vice-versa — and in almost no time at all, they were on their way to their first of their Nobel Prizes. Start reading Solomon Northup's classic memoir today. New books are added every day. But there are so many others Here are some of the best biographies of all time, many of which are written to inspire you to take risks in business—and in life. Rated 4.3 over 151,000 reviews, 240 pages. And whatever they say about pictures being worth a thousand words, Shahidi’s are worth more still: Prince’s incredible vibrance, contagious excitement, and altogether singular personality come through in every shot. To stay as objective as possible, I rank all my book recommendations by a combination of what’s most loved (Goodreads rating), what’s most popular (Goodreads review count) and what’s delivered timelessly relevant advice (first publication date). It’s based on Hurston’s interviews with the last remaining survivor of the Middle Passage slave trade, a man named Cudjo Lewis. Want 5 FREE Printable Productivity Templates? Rated 4.1 over 218,600 reviews. This tale of Enrique’s perilous journey is not for the faint of heart, but it is an account of incredible devotion and sharp commentary on the pain of separation among immigrant families. Stay in the loop! This “biography of the world’s most famous equation” is a one-of-a-kind take on the genre: rather than being the story of Einstein, it really does follow the history of the equation itself. Indeed, despite the title (a nod to his work during WWII), a great deal of the “enigmatic” Turing is laid out in this book. And we make resolutions all the time. Rated 4.5 over 724,200 reviews, Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, 416 pages. Rated 4.5 over 134,000 reviews, 312 pages. Enjoyed this list of best biographies? Fantastic job done. Time passes, and we revisit the house, but itâ s empty and left open to the elements. Your email address will not be published. Some books explore events, objects or places. The best-selling autobiography since 2001 is 'A Child Called It' by Dave Pelzer, shifting over a million copies and generating over £5.5 million in … Click here to read the full list of best biographies and autobiographies ever written. Thanks for stopping by. An incredibly imagined fantas... Biographer Richard Holmes once wrote that his work was “a kind of pursuit… writing about the pursuit of that fleeting figure, in such a way as to bring them alive in the present.”At the risk of sounding cliché, the best biographies do exactly this: bring their subjec... Get 12 Years A Slave delivered straight to your inbox. Rated 4.3 over 297,800 reviews, 304 pages. Rated 4.3 over 154,000 reviews, 457 pages. Rated 4.1 over 764,700 reviews, Further Adventures of a Curious Character, 916 pages. Rated 4.1 over 121,000 reviews, 207 pages. And if there’s a top biography you think I’ve missed off this list? Such was the life of Billy Milligan, the subject of this haunting biography by the author of Flowers for Algernon. By. But the difference between those books and the best historical biographies is that good biographies keep both eyes on their heroes. Anne Frank. The tale of this so-called “last true hermit” will captivate readers who have always fantasized about escaping society, with vivid descriptions of Knight’s rural setup, his carefully calculated moves and how he managed to survive the deadly cold of the Maine winters. Many of those may use people’s stories to colour their narratives. I just loved your work here. Rated 4.1 over 572,400 reviews, 165 pages. Looking for inspirational biographies for 2021 and beyond? 22 of the Best Biographies Ever Written. Rated 4.5 over 355,700 reviews, 334 pages. Until then, enjoy this list of best biographies…. Other Recommended Christian Biographies. The Diary of a Young Girl. Baker was born into poverty in Virginia in 1925. Rated 4.2 over 119,200 reviews, 461 pages. Hodges’ 1983 biography of Alan Turing sheds light on the inner workings of this brilliant mathematician, cryptologist, and computer pioneer. Wilson closely examines her early family and relationships, feelings and experiences, with information taken from her meticulous diaries — setting a strong precedent for other Plath biographers to follow. Author Ruth Franklin digs deep into the existence of the reclusive and mysterious Jackson, drawing penetrating comparisons between the true events of her life and the dark nature of her fiction. Looking for the best biographies of all time? As far as this list is concerned, a biography is any story that follows the life of a person. Trust real people, not robots, to give you book recommendations. Rated 4.0 over 577,300 reviews, Winston Spencer Churchill: Visions of Glory 1874-1932, 153 pages. Caroline Fraser draws upon never-before-published historical resources to create a lush study of the author’s life — not in the gently narrated manner of the Little House series, but in raw and startling truths about her upbringing, marriage, and volatile relationship with her daughter (and alleged ghostwriter) Rose Wilder Lane. Though Farmer’s humanitarian accomplishments are extraordinary in and of themselves, the true charm of this book comes from Kidder’s personal relationship with him — and the sense of fulfillment the reader sustains from reading about someone genuinely heroic, written by someone else who truly understands and admires what they do. The Best Autobiographies Ever Written. Though many a biography of him has been attempted, Gilbert’s is the final authority on Winston Churchill — considered by many to be Britain’s greatest prime minister ever. Honestly, it would take many lifetimes to read even a small fraction of the best biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs ever written.So when the Amazon Books editors set out to compile a list of the 100 Biographies and Memoirs to Read in a (Single) Lifetime, we knew up front that we would be making some tough--even contentious--choices. 4.8 out of 5 stars 43,786. In Cold Blood book. Titled after one of her most evocative poems, this shimmering bio of Sylvia Plath takes an unusual approach. Our top picks for the best biographies of all time; Mind you, this is a highly subjective article. Want A FREE 10-Step Speed Reading Cheatsheet? Best Personal Finance Books: 35 Best Books on Money (2020), Best Mindset Books: 35 Best Books to Improve Your Mindset (2020), Best Productivity Books: 70 Best Books on Time Management. A dexterous balance of in-depth research and intimately drawn details makes this biography a perfect tribute to the mercurial man who led Britain through World War II. Johnson himself was a surprisingly cunning figure, gradually maneuvering his way closer and closer to power. Yet through all the gaiety and humour, you perceive someone always acting and trying to hide a chill and a loneliness that emerge in real biographies of him. Rated 4.4 over 213,500 reviews, 426 pages. Biography Fantasy & Adventure Fiction History Mystery Romance Sci-Fi & Fantasy Life & Relationships See All > Featured B&N Exclusives B&N YA Book Club The Best Books of 2020 Binge a New YA Series Boxed Sets Explore SparkNotes.com Get Ready for School: Books & Supplies Trend Shop I LOVE book recommendations so if there are great biographies, autobiographies or memoirs that you think deserve mentioning, leave a comment and I’ll be sure to include them in the next round of updates! According to this 1941 biography, it’s the barely-surviving sharecropper families who were severely impacted by the American “Dust Bowl” — hundreds of people entrenched in poverty, whose humanity Evans and Agee desperately implore their audience to see in their book. Come and share in our WeAreTeachers Helplinegroup on Facebook. Consider that a full 80% of resolutions fail by the second week of February. Your email address will not be published. Rated 4.0 over 114,300 reviews, 217 pages. Plus, some of our favorite high school reading lists. ... Year in Review: Best Music of 2020 — Staff Picks She may not have been assassinated or killed in a mysterious plane crash, but Rosemary Kennedy’s fate is in many ways the worst of “the Kennedy Curse.” As if a botched lobotomy that left her almost completely incapacitated weren’t enough, her parents then hid her away from society, almost never to be seen again. The Art of Living will never share your email. The former parks commissioner of New York, Robert Moses was a man who got ... Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi. All Posts. Browse our latest titles in the Historical Figure Biographies & Memoirs Best Sellers category to discover your next read from PenguinRandomHouse.com The best selling autobiography of all time is almost certainly The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. Get breaking news and big stories on your desktop Instead, it’s her artistic brilliance and immense resolve to leave her mark on the world — a mark that will not soon be forgotten, in part thanks to Herrera’s dedicated work. One Small Action Separates Success From Mediocrity. First Published: 1947. Shelley: The Pursuit details an almost feverish tracking of Percy Shelley as a dark and cutting figure in the Romantic period — reforming many previous historical conceptions about him through Holmes’ compelling and resolute writing. Rated 4.4 over 396,900 reviews, 818 pages. What is a biography? 3. Required fields are marked *. But in this expertly woven biography, Robert Caro lays out the long, winding road of his political career, and it’s full of twists you wouldn’t expect. Best Sellers in Biographies & Memoirs #1. Christopher McCandless, aka Alexander Supertramp, hitchhiked to Alaska and disappeared into the Denali wilderness in April 1992. Another Gothic figure has been made newly known through this work, detailing the life of prolific horror and mystery writer Shirley Jackson. Unsubscribe easily anytime. I visited your blog for the first time. This appropriately lyrical biography of brilliant Jazz Age poet and renowned feminist, Edna St. Vincent Millay, is indeed a perfect balance of savage and beautiful. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. Send Yourself A FREE Printable Cheatsheet Of 800 Positive, Neutral & Negative Character Traits... Want A FREE Printable Weekly Planner Template? Here are the 70 best biographies of time, ranked and curated from my master list of hundreds of memoirs and books. Well, you’re in the right place! Yet. Read 16 943 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Get 6 FREE templates & master the same tools used by Dominic O'Brien to become the 8-time World Memory Champion. I then went through their faves and picked a few that I’m adding to my own “to be read” list (in bold below). And with that, let's jump right into some good lessons and even better titles. Books Best Sellers & more Top New Releases Deals in Books School Books Textbooks Books Outlet Children's Books Calendars & Diaries Audible Audiobooks Unlimited One-Day Delivery and more Prime members enjoy fast & free shipping, unlimited streaming of movies and TV shows with Prime Video and many more exclusive benefits. Rated 4.4 over 376,000 reviews, 288 pages. Rated 4.2 over 141,200 reviews, 452 pages. Rock stars of yesteryear had all the fun. Lyndon Johnson might not seem as intriguing or scandalous as figures like Kennedy, Nixon, or W. Bush. The Ten Best Rock Biographies Eleven years later, Enrique finally decided to take matters into his own hands in order to see her again: he would traverse Central and South America via railway, risking his life atop the “train of death” and at the hands of the immigration authorities, to reunite with his mother. I’ve tried to keep this list focused on biography only, so there is little in the way of memoir or autobiography. Of course I don’t agree with the order of the individual books in the lists, but that’s just me. From Queer Eye star Tan France's best-selling memoir to Gabrielle Union's emotional gripster, here are the very best books by celebrities.  And that a vast majority of relationships (plus many marriages) end as well with break-ups or divorce. Biographies and autobiographies are also often written about some of the greatest figures from throughout history. http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/402774.Partners_of_the_Heart, http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18422.Gifted_Hands. Get a FREE 10-step cheatsheet to help you read faster and remember more of what you read based on the classic guide, How to Read a Book. This biography of esteemed mathematician John Nash was both a finalist for the 1998 Pulitzer Prize and the basis for the award-winning film of the same name. You will find a mix of subjects, including important figures in literature, science, politics, history, art, and more. Think and Grow Rich is one of the best business books of all time. How We Are Confusing Self-Love with Narcissism In This Generation. A great biography isn’t just a laundry list of events that happened to someone. Rated 4.0 over 861,800 reviews, 352 pages. If you're looking for more inspiring nonfiction, check out this list of 30 engaging self-help books! 4.7 out of 5 stars 15,444. Perhaps the most impressive biographical feat of the twenty-first century, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is about a woman whose cells completely changed the trajectory of modern medicine. A prolific essayist, short story writer, and novelist, Hurston turned her hand to biographical writing in 1927 with this incredible work, kept under lock and key until it was published 2018. It’s a crowdsourced collection of the best biographies ever published as decided by readers and biography lovers like you. This gorgeously constructed biography follows Paul Farmer, a doctor who’s worked for decades to eradicate infectious diseases around the globe, particularly in underprivileged areas. Why are some famous biographies ranked higher than others? Could there be a more fitting title for a book about the husband-wife team who discovered radioactivity? The book quickly became a beloved best seller when it was published, and went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for biography. This isn’t just a whimsical list of my favourite people or their memoirs. But that didn’t stop Stephen Greenblatt, who in 2004 turned out this magnificently detailed biography of the Bard: a series of imaginative reenactments of his writing process, and insights on how the social and political ideals of the time would have influenced him. All the biographies on this list are just as captivating as excellent novels, if not more so. Rated 4.2 over 396,200 reviews, 283 pages. Yet in this new biography, penned by devoted Kennedy scholar Kate Larson, the full truth of Rosemary’s post-lobotomy life is at last revealed. Trust book recommendations from real people, not robots , Biographer Richard Holmes once wrote that his work was “a kind of pursuit… writing about the pursuit of that fleeting figure, in such a way as to bring them alive in the present.”. Rated 4.1 over 530,100 reviews, 210 pages. Rated 3.8 over 152,000 reviews, Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, 397 pages. If you don't see your favorite biography on this list, let us know in the comments below what you believe deserves to be on this list and why. Our Best Biography Books Read and vote for your favorites on the discover feed. Below I’ve listed 50 of the best biographies out there. He may never have been president, but he was a fascinating and unique figure in American history — plus it’s fun to get the truth behind the catchy songs. But Roberts’ attitude toward his subject is what really makes this work shine: rather than ridiculing him (as it would undoubtedly be easy to do), he approaches the “petty tyrant” with a healthy amount of deference. Fans of Into the Wild and The Lost City of Z will find their next adventure fix in this 2017 book about Christopher Knight, a man who lived by himself in the Maine woods for almost thirty years. Thank you for such a great list! Look no further than some of the best-selling biographies and memoirs of the rich and famous. The best intentions and the best-laid plans generally speaking end in failure. Everyone knows of Vladimir Nabokov — but what about his wife, Vera, whom he called “the best-humored woman I have ever known”? Includes: Wheel of Life, Habit & Value Trackers, Goal Setting Worksheet, Daily Planner and Guided Reflection... Save thousands of dollars and hours with this FREE 8,000-word language learning guide and toolkit... 115 pages. Hey Svjetlana – I’ve got 239 suggestions on my biography long-list at the moment and neither of these gems was on there, thank you for suggesting them! Rebecca Skloot skillfully commemorates the previously unknown life of a poor black woman whose cancer cells were taken, without her knowledge, for medical testing — and without whom we wouldn’t have many of the critical cures we depend upon today. 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In almost the same tools used by Dominic O'Brien to become the 8-time World Memory Champion send Yourself a Printable..., you ’ d expect from nonfiction with the order of the greatest figures throughout. Include Night ( the Night Trilogy, # 1 ) by Elie Wiesel and the Glass Castle Jeannette. Collection of the top 70 biography books Look no further than some of our high... Mathematician John Nash was both a finalist for the 1998... 2 Glass Castle by Walls... As excellent novels, if not more so best biographies… that cement his reputation as one of her evocative... Is a school librarian in New York out my ranked list of the best biographies out.... Men, all-in-one ve tried to keep this list are just as captivating as excellent novels, not... His resulting book, initially published in 1937, is a highly subjective article Character! Best Rock biographies Rock stars of yesteryear had all the biographies on this list are just captivating... 1936 Berlin Olympics, 416 pages Neutral & Negative Character Traits... Want a best selling biographies of all time.