Saturday, March 9, 2013

Things YOU Want to Know. . .

I love a great memoir.  There aren't too many people's lives I won't read about.  Don't you find that it's interesting to know what makes a person tick or who they are as told through their own words?  If you share a love for biographies and memoirs like I do, here are some you may find fascinating.  Happy Reading!
 
 
 
 
In this star-studded autobiography, Clive Davis shares a personal, candid look into his remarkable life and the last fifty years of popular music as only a true insider can.In the history of popular music, no one looms as large as Clive Davis. His career has spanned more than forty years, and he has discovered, signed, or worked with a staggering array of artists: Whitney Houston, Janis Joplin, Simon and Garfunkel, Barry Manilow, Patti Smith, Lou Reed, Dionne Warwick, Carlos Santana, The Grateful Dead, Alicia Keys, Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Hudson, and Aretha Franklin, to name a few. He has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, received a Lifetime Achievement Grammy, and hosted the world’s highest profile parties.

In this fully illustrated, personal account, Davis tells all, from becoming an orphan in high school and getting through college and law school on scholarships, to being falsely accused of embezzlement and starting up his own record company, J Records. His wealth of experience offers valuable insight into the evolution of the music business over the past half-century and into the future.



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An explosive exposé of Detroit, icon of America’s lost prosperity, from Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Charlie LeDuff
In the heart of America, a metropolis is quietly destroying itself. Detroit, once the richest city in the nation, is now its poorest. Once the vanguard of America’s machine age—mass production, automobiles, and blue-collar jobs—Detroit is now America’s capital for unemployment, illiteracy, foreclosure, and dropouts. A city the size of San Francisco and Manhattan could neatly fit into Detroit’s vacant lots.

In another life, Charlie LeDuff won the Pulitzer Prize reporting for The New York Times. But all that is behind him now, after returning to find his hometown in total freefall. Detroit is where his mother’s flower shop was firebombed; where his sister lost herself to drugs; where his brother works in a factory cleaning Chinese-manufactured screws so they can be repackaged as “Made in America.”

With the steel-eyed reportage that has become his trademark—and the righteous indignation only a native son possesses—LeDuff sets out to uncover what destroyed his city. He embeds with a local fire brigade struggling to defend its neighborhood against systemic arson and bureaucratic corruption. He investigates state senators and career police officials, following the money to discover who benefits from Detroit’s decline. He befriends union organizers, homeless do-gooders, embattled businessmen, and struggling homeowners, all ordinary people holding the city together by sheer determination.

Americans have hoped for decades that Detroit was an exception, an outlier. What LeDuff reveals is that Detroit is, once and for all, America’s city: It led us on the way up, and now it is leading us on the way down. Detroit can no longer be ignored because what happened there is happening out here.

Redemption is thin on the ground in this ghost of a city, but Detroit: An American Autopsy is no hopeless parable. Instead, LeDuff shares a deeply human drama of colossal greed, ignorance, endurance, and courage. Detroit is an unbelievable story of a hard town in a rough time filled with some of the strangest and strongest people our country has to offer—and a black comic tale of the absurdity of American life in the twenty-first century.



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Death Grip chronicles a top climber's near-fatal struggle with anxiety and depression, and his nightmarish journey through the dangerous world of prescription drugs. Matt Samet lived to climb, and craved the challenge, risk, and exhilaration of conquering sheer rock faces around the United States and internationally. But Samet's depression, compounded by the extreme diet and fitness practices of climbers, led him to seek professional help. He entered the murky, inescapable world of psychiatric medicine, where he developed a dangerous addiction to prescribed medications—primarily "benzos," or benzodiazepines—that landed him in institutions and nearly killed him.

With dramatic storytelling, persuasive research data, and searing honesty, Matt Samet reveals the hidden epidemic of benzo addiction, which some have suggested can be harder to quit than heroin. Millions of adults and teenagers are prescribed these drugs, but few understand how addictive they are—and how dangerous long-term usage can be, even when prescribed by doctors.

After a difficult struggle with addiction, Samet slowly makes his way to a life in recovery through perseverance and a deep love of rock climbing. Conveying both the exhilaration of climbing in the wilderness and the utter madness of addiction, Death Grip is a powerful and revelatory memoir.
 
 
 
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Comedian, Chelsea Lately writer and star, and New York Times bestselling author Heather McDonald explains her outrageous attempts to have it all—her way.In her hilarious New York Times bestseller You’ll Never Blue Ball in This Town Again, Heather McDonald recounted her adventures as an unwilling virgin in Hollywood. Now happily married with three children, Heather writes for and can be seen weekly on E! Channel’s hugely successful show, Chelsea Lately, and also stars in the show’s spin-off, After Lately.

But life as a grown-up—even a pretend grown-up—has its challenges. Heather’s a working mom with parents who live next door; a stay-at-home husband who doesn’t give an inch; a sister who keeps asking for one of her eggs; and a group of neighborhood moms who stopped talking to her when she took her kids to a stripper pool party in Vegas. Plus, she still remains friends with the Kardashians and collects Bravo Housewives like they are bottles of wine.

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"There is really no better indicator you're a mother than acquiring the ability to catch throw-up in a plastic bag, disinfect your hands, and immediately ask your friend to pass the beef jerky as you put on another Taylor Swift song and act as if nothing has happened."This is the type of insight Melanie Shankle offers in this quirky memoir of motherhood. Written in the familiar, stream-of-consciousness style of her blog, Big Mama, "Sparkly Green Earrings" is a heartwarming and hilarious look at motherhood from someone who is still trying to figure it all out. Filled with personal stories--from the decision to become a mother to the heartbreak of miscarriage and ultimately, to the joy of raising a baby and living to tell about it--"Sparkly Green Earrings" will make you feel like you're sitting across the table from your best friend. A must-read for anyone who's ever had a child or even thought about it.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kimberly Ranee Hicks, Author/Poet
 
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