If it’s fall, it must be memoir season—at least for me. There’s something about the crisp air and bright leaves of October and November that always inspires me to write. I just seem to be a little better about carving out time for more personal work, like essays and creative nonfiction.
And it also means I’m hungry for memoirs. I’m always on the lookout for a great, true tale—even more so in the fall.
Here’s what I’ve got on my list, at least so far. (Book links go to the authors’ websites or publishers’ websites.)
- Born Round: The Secret History of a Full-Time Eater by Frank Bruni I discovered this book when I read Bruni’s essay I Was a Baby Bulimic in the New York Times Magazine. It’s not just his love of food that pulled me in; he’s an engaging storyteller. After reading his essay, I wanted more.
- The Kids Are All Right: A Memoir by Diana Welch, Liz Welch, Amanda Welch, Dan Welch Four siblings recount their experiences with being orphaned and then being separated from each other. While my childhood wasn’t all rainbows and sunshine, at least my brother and I were together. Just reading a brief interview with two of the sisters had me choked up. I can’t wait to read their full stories.
- Half Broke Horses: A True-Life Novel by Jeannette Walls. The author of The Glass Castle brings us the story of her real-life grandmother. Where does the “true-life novel” part come in? Walls writes in first-person, giving voice to an amazing woman. This Entertainment Weekly review confirms some of my doubts about the book—and reaffirms my desire to read Walls’ follow up to her riveting memoir.
Counting the Days
The book I can’t wait to read is Mary Karr’s new memoir Lit, which follows her descent into alcoholism and madness. The publisher’s description of the book says that Lit is “also about getting drunk and getting sober; becoming a mother by letting go of a mother; and learning to write by learning to live.” I am especially interested in reading more about Karr’s relationship with her mother and how it evolved. To be released November 3. (My birthday. I know what I’m doing that day!)
Okay, your turn. What are you reading as the leaves fall?