In honor of Black History Month, read about some interesting people. It's always interesting to find out what makes a person who they are. If you agree, you should add these great biographies and memoirs to your reading list. Happy Reading!
In the months since her tragic death, the life of Whitney Houston has been the subject of several good books. But Remembering Whitney is written by the one person who unquestionably knew her best: her mother. A music legend in her own right, Cissy Houston shares the intimate story of her angelic-voiced daughter. And, though every line is laced with love, Cissy doesn’t shrink from describing the darkness as well as the light. In addition to motherly insights into her daughter’s childhood and rise to fame, Cissy dispels the lies, reveals her desperate attempts to help Whitney, and relives her grief when the unthinkable became reality. Appearing at the one-year anniversary of Whitney’s passing, this touching book keeps her legend alive.
In 1991, the savage beating of Rodney King by L.A. police focused the world’s attention on police brutality in America. But the real Rodney Glen King remained hidden behind his media portrayal as a symbol of injustice. Now, this riveting memoir reveals King’s own story. King followed his father’s path into alcoholism—and he describes, without self-pity, his lifelong struggle with addiction. When he was beaten, Tasered and kicked by police, the videotape set off a literal firestorm in the streets of L.A. Yet, when he had the opportunity to speak out, King famously asked, “Why can’t we all get along?” Here, he tells his firsthand story of the brutal attack, the trial and the aftermath, mincing no words and sparing no self-criticism.
In Finally Free, one of today’s most talented—and controversial—sports figures tells his unvarnished life story. Michael Vick opens up about his childhood in the Newport News, Va., projects, and relives his college football triumphs, his NFL success with the Atlanta Falcons, his bruising battle for custody of his son, and then the downward spiral that halted his career. The quarterback’s life lay in ruins as he landed in Leavenworth Prison—but prison turned out to be his saving grace. Vick sought forgiveness from God and found redemption in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles. The theme of this sometimes shocking, but ultimately inspiring, autobiography is Vick’s faith reawakening and his ongoing, ever-deepening relationship with God.
In this explosive memoir, La Toya Jackson exposes never-before-told truths of the inner workings of the Jackson family and provides an intriguing glimpse into the life of her beloved brother Michael. The closest to Michael of all the siblings, La Toya and Michael shared an unbreakable bond; and now she candidly shares little-known details of the secretive superstar’s life. Lifting the veil of intrigue that has surrounded the Jackson siblings since they became international singing sensations in the 1970s, La Toya delves into the reasons for Michael’s troubled life and untimely death, and, with the intimacy only a sister could have, presents a poignant, at times heartbreaking, memoir guaranteed to stir emotions in his most loyal fans.
In every era, black inventors have helped make people’s lives safer, more comfortable, more profitable. This incredible collection spotlights dozens of men and women, who, through courage and perseverance, overcame prejudice and other obstacles to make their discoveries known. Intriguing stories abound—from former slave Benjamin Montgomery, who invented a propeller that improved steamboat navigation, to Dr. Jane Cooke Wright, a pioneer in the field of cancer research who not only discovered an innovative method for testing cancer drugs, but also became the first African-American woman to serve as dean of a medical college. Inspiring and enlightening, it’s a celebration of African-American ingenuity no library should be without.
Kimberly Ranee Hicks, Author/Poet
Celebrating Black History Month!