Category Archives: Memoir

Fun Home and Are You My Mother?

In these two graphic memoirs, Alison Bechdel chronicles her ambivalent love for each of her parents. The first, Fun Home, deals with her father, who died, possibly by suicide, when Bechdel was in college, not long after she came out … Continue reading

Posted in Graphic Novels / Comics, Memoir, Nonfiction | 8 Comments

The Guynd: A Scottish Journal

Belinda Rathbone first met John in 1954, when she was too young and he was too old for them to take an interest in each other. But in 1990, she was 39, and he was 54, and they were the … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction | 6 Comments

Acedia and Me

Acedia (more often spelled accidie) is a spiritual state that’s a bit difficult to define. It shares some topography with depression and despair, but it can’t be cured with medication. It has been conflated with the sin of sloth, but … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction, Religion | 8 Comments

Waiting for My Cats to Die

At age 42, Stacy Horn had a mid-life crisis. Single but feeling ready to settle down, she remained “as far from marriage or anything like it as I was at sixteen.” She lived alone with two cats, both of whom … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction | 18 Comments

A Time to Keep Silence

Last year, one of the best books I read was Patrick Leigh Fermor’s A Time of Gifts: his account of his 1933 journey, on foot, at the age of 19, from Rotterdam to Hungary. Fermor’s humor, his humility, his lively … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction, Religion, Travel/ Exploration | 13 Comments

My Life in France

Maybe you all remember back in 2005 when Julie and Julia came out. It was the result of a blog, remember, that Julie Powell wrote for Salon.com, in which she cooked all of the recipes in Julia Child’s Mastering the … Continue reading

Posted in Food, Memoir, Nonfiction | 22 Comments

Skating to Antarctica

Jenny Diski explains her desire to get to Antarctica — or as close as she can get by cruise ship — as a desire for absence. If I trace it back, that wish for whiteout began with the idea of … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction, Travel/ Exploration | 9 Comments

Some Assembly Required

Last year, Teresa went to a book signing with Anne and Sam Lamott (she gets to do things like that all the time, because she lives near Washington, D.C. and not in the Inland Empire – no, I am not jealous, why are … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction | 6 Comments

Stet: An Editor’s Life

An editor’s work stays behind the scenes. We see the finished product and laud the author—quite rightfully—for the skill and talent that brought ideas and people to life. But I don’t imagine we think much about the editor who coaxed … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction | 10 Comments

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened

Perhaps the best indicator of whether you’ll enjoy this memoir by Jenny Lawson (aka The Bloggess) is whether you enjoy reading her blog. If you find her blog funny, you’ll find the book funny. If you find her blog overly … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir, Nonfiction | Tagged | 18 Comments