2022 Staff Picks: Biographies and Memoirs
Our expert staff members look back at the year and share their favorite titles.
2022 by Davis, ViolaGet this item
We admired Viola Davis as an actress before reading this book. We love her even more after reading her memoir. A heart-wrenching, raw, candid, yet uplifting book about how Viola Davis found her voice and ultimately herself through the pain and the trauma of her childhood. Many of us enjoyed the audiobook, which is narrated by Viola Davis. Suggested by Megan, Michelle, Monica, Rummanah, and Van.
2022 by Blakinger, KeriGet this item
I was really touched by Blakinger's harsh but real reflection on what happened in her life to take her from Cornell University to prison to making a genuine difference in people's lives as a reporter. I cried. A lot. Suggested by Rachael.
2022 by LaPointe, Sasha taqwšebluGet this item
In this captivating memoir, LaPointe reveals vulnerability and trauma, but also healing and strength. She sprinkles pop culture references throughout along with ancestral history, and it all blends seamlessly. I can’t wait to see what LaPointe creates next. Suggested by Sharon.
2022 by Charnas, DanGet this item
A deep dive into the artistry, technique, and all-too-short life of James Dewitt Yancey, also known as Dilla. It’s superbly written and deeply engaging. If you're like me, you'll pull up a Dilla playlist and listen along, nodding your head to those limping, off-kilter beats and marvel as you read. Suggested by Chris.
2022 by McCurdy, JennetteGet this item
We love how vulnerable Jennette is in telling her heartbreaking story with humor and candidness. To craft a story well with a title as shocking as this is an incredible feat. Jennette's talent is in her writing. Suggested by Becca, Maridsa, and Monica.
2022 by Bloom, AmyGet this item
This is a powerful, candid memoir about the author assisting her husband to "legally, peacefully and painlessly end his own life” on his own terms. I don't know how one tells this kind of story without being overwhelmed by the pathos of it all, though you sense how important it was for Bloom to get this story right. And she does. Suggested by Chris.
2022 by Zamora, JavierGet this item
I was incredibly moved by this harrowing, heart-wrenching, and beautifully written memoir of the author's solo migration from El Salvador to the U.S. at the age of nine. Zamora paints a very compassionate, human, and urgent light on an ongoing humanitarian crisis. Suggested by Rummanah.
2022 by Liu, SimuGet this item
A heartfelt and inspiring memoir. Liu delves into his family history, their struggles and expectations, as well as his path to become an actor against the odds. It’s a story that sticks with you, and I’m thrilled that he’s firmly part of the MCU as Shang-chi. Suggested by Sharon.
2022 by Odenkirk, BobGet this item
I have been a fan of Bob Odenkirk for years. Anyone who has watched him from Mr. Show to Better Call Saul will enjoy this! I loved learning about his growth as an actor and, as a Chicago native, he's a heartwarming author to read. Suggested by Monica.
2022 by Stevens, DanaGet this item
I found this wonderfully engaging, deeply researched biography of the silent film icon Buster Keaton a delight. Born at the dawn of the 20th century and raised in a family of vaudeville actors, Keaton was a creative genius and had physical grace, ambition, and especially resilience, all of which are on display. Suggested by Chris.