Memoirs

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Tragedy Plus Time: A Tragi-Comic Memoir

seems fitting

Sometimes memoirs are written by people you’ve never heard of and you wonder why in the world they felt they were entitled to sell their story to anyone. This is not one of those times. Written by Adam Cayton-Holland, a comedian and writer you probably haven’t heard of, comes this memoir of grief and moving on after the death of a loved one. Tragically, Cayton-Holland’s sister committed suicide and he had the unfortunate timing to find her. Obviously, this would have a strong negative effect on anyone. Cayton-Holland writes about how personally he took this event, how he struggled and still struggles with the grief and sadness, but also how he managed to move on. Beyond just telling a tale of moving past tragedy he relates the guilt that he felt about moving on and every other human emotion that people like to bury and ignore. Through all of this deep and sad material he manages to stay light and keep the reader entertained and even laughing when they aren’t crying. He is a gifted writer and his story is truly relatable and touching.

Buy it here: Tragedy Plus Time: A Tragi-comic Memoir

Educated

Educated is a memoir by Tara Westover about growing up in a cult level religious family. She tells intense stories about her family’s deep distrust of all things science, government, technology, or secular and how she managed to find her way out. She writes beautifully, especially for someone who basically had to teach herself at a much later age than most Americans learn to read and write. Her prose is magnificent and makes her life story a true page turner. The moral of her story is that education is a tool that we all must give ourselves in order to not regress to the dark ages of religious oppression and fear.

Buy it here: Educated: A Memoir

Room to Dream

This recommendation is a bit more esoteric. If you are at all a fan of Lynch’s work, be it his films, paintings, poetry, comic strip, or even his furniture this is a must read. But as any Lynch fan knows, he’s a bit… odd. This memoir/autobiography recognizes his tendencies to ramble and go off on bizarre tangents and gives another author, Kristine McKenna, authorization to fill in the blanks wherever Lynch leaves off. Chapters alternate between Lynch’s recollection of memories and McKenna’s researched biography. This makes for a fascinating read and demonstrates how memories cannot always be authenticated but in many cases it’s the story that matters.

Buy it here: Room to Dream