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Biographies

Chasing Hilary: ten years, two presidential campaigns, and one intact glass ceiling book cover

Chasing Hilary: ten years, two presidential campaigns, and one intact glass ceiling

Amy Chozick

324.973 /Chozick
Nonfiction, Biographies

The dishy, rollicking, and deeply personal story of what really happened in the 2016 election, as seen through the eyes of the New York Times reporter who gave eight years of her life to covering the First Woman President who wasn't.

Melody's picture

Adding this book to me "to read" list. I cataloged this book when it came in, and I couldn't take my eyes off the sections on what it was like to be a political reporter covering candidates while they were in Iowa. The journalist details her times in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, writing about how different candidates were perceived at the State Fair. It's a book published by a mainstream publisher, and it mentions the butter cow! -Melody

The undoing project : a friendship that changed our minds book cover

The undoing project : a friendship that changed our minds

Michael (Michael M.) Lewis

612.8233 /Lewis
Science, Biographies

Forty years ago, Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original studies undoing our assumptions about the decision-making process. Their papers showed the ways in which the human mind erred, systematically, when forced to make judgments in uncertain situations. Their work created the field of behavioral economics, revolutionized Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made much of Michael Lewis's own work possible. Kahneman and Tversky are more responsible than anybody for the powerful trend to mistrust human intuition and defer to algorithms.The Undoing Project is about a compelling collaboration between two men who have the dimensions of great literary figures. They became heroes in the university and on the battlefield--both had important careers in the Israeli military--and their research was deeply linked to their extraordinary life experiences. Amos Tversky was a brilliant, self-confident warrior and extrovert, the center of rapt attention in any room; Kahneman, a fugitive from the Nazis in his childhood, was an introvert whose questing self-doubt was the seedbed of his ideas. They became one of the greatest partnerships in the history of science, working together so closely that they couldn't remember whose brain originated which ideas, or who should claim credit. They flipped a coin to decide the lead authorship on the first paper they wrote, and simply alternated thereafter.This story about the workings of the human mind is explored through the personalities of two fascinating individuals so fundamentally different from each other that they seem unlikely friends or colleagues. In the process they may well have changed, for good, mankind's view of its own mind.

Tom's picture

Added by Tom

Four Seasons in Rome : on twins, insomnia, and the biggest funeral in the history of the world book cover

Four Seasons in Rome : on twins, insomnia, and the biggest funeral in the history of the world

Anthony Doerr

914.5632 /Doerr
Travel, Biographies

"The recipient of an American Academy fellowship, Doerr, his wife, and their twin newborns are on their way to Rome for a year. Cultural isolation, the death of John Paul II, struggles to complete a novel, and the tales of first-time parenthood uniquely blend together as Doerr meanders his way through a one-year Roman holiday. Along the way, he meets Romans quick to praise his twins, Romans quick to prejudge an American, and Romans happy to share the secrets of their city with him. Set against this backdrop, Doerr finds it difficult to focus on the novel he plans on writing; instead, like so many other visitors, he falls for the Eternal City. For readers who have been to Rome, Doerr's reflections will leave them longing for a return trip. For those who have not, Doerr's stories of piazzas and pizzas will have them checking travel arrangements. Either way, this memoir is a wonderful combination of a writer's two dominant struggles: cultural identity and family."--

Candice's picture

Anthony Doerr (author of All the Light We Cannot See) was a brand-new father of twins when he was granted a sabbatical in Rome. He takes on the Eternal City and the newborns all in one go, and is rewarded for it. A sort of epic love poem to Rome and family, and all there is to be aware of and savor. -Candice

Danza! : Amalia Hernández and el Ballet Folklórico de México book cover

Danza! : Amalia Hernández and el Ballet Folklórico de México

Duncan Tonatiuh

jE Tonatiuh
Picture Books, Biographies, Art / Art History

"This is a picture book biography for children ages 6-10 about Amalia Hernández (1917-2000), the dancer and choreographer who founded the Mexican Folkloric Ballet, a dance organization that continues to perform today. The author/illustrator is Duncan Tonatiuh"--

Casey's picture

Added by Casey

The Road to Jonestown : Jim Jones and Peoples Temple book cover

The Road to Jonestown : Jim Jones and Peoples Temple

Jeff Guinn

289.9 /Guinn
Biographies, History, Religion

A portrait of the cult leader behind the Jonestown Massacre examines his personal life, from his extramarital affairs and drug use to his fraudulent faith healing practices and his decision to move his followers to Guyana, sharing new details about the events leading to the 1978 tragedy.

Candice's picture

Guinn does a masterful job of drawing in the many elements of Jones' life that, in hindsight, all played some part in making him the person he came to be. I was surprised to find that, at the end of the book, some sort of sense was made of the awful situation. -Candice

The best we could do : an illustrated memoir book cover

The best we could do : an illustrated memoir

Thi Bui

BIOGRAPHY Bui, Thi
Graphic Novels, Memoir, Biographies, History

The author describes her experiences as a young Vietnamese immigrant, highlighting her family's move from their war-torn home to the United States in graphic novel format.

Casey's picture

Combining genealogy, auto-biography, history and graphic novel, Thi Bui's memoir is haunting and beautiful. -Casey

Leonardo da Vinci book cover

Leonardo da Vinci

Walter Isaacson

BIOGRAPHY Leonardo
Biographies, History, Nonfiction

Acclaimed biographer Isaacson (Steve Jobs; The Innovators) delves into the 15th and 16th centuries to examine the insatiable energy of Leonardo da Vinci (1452â€"1519). Primarily relying on da Vinci's notebooks (more than 7,200 pages) for his research, as they help to understand da Vinci as a person, the author argues early and often that his subject was not the most brilliant man who ever lived, simply the most curious one. For example, in his journals, da Vinci reminds himself to "describe the tongue of the woodpecker." The illegitimate son of a wealthy notary in Vinci, a town outside Florence, Italy, da Vinci had a fascination with science and art from a young age. This melding of subjects was a main component of Renaissance life. This book examines da Vinci's birth, young adulthood, sexuality, works (e.g., The Last Supper, The Mona Lisa), and contemporaries such as Michelangelo and Cesare Borgia (on whom Machiavelli's The Prince was based). Lastly, Isaacson explores the polymath's enduring impact.

Candice's picture

A thorough and illuminating look at the consummate Renaissance genius. There are many biographies about Leonardo, and books that are about the things he did, but this one goes deep and gives an amazing amount of insight into how and what he thought, and the events that shaped him -Candice

Can't we talk about something more pleasant? book cover

Can't we talk about something more pleasant?

Roz Chast

BIOGRAPHY Chast, Roz
Graphic Novels, Biographies

A graphic memoir by a long-time New Yorker cartoonist celebrates the final years of her aging parents' lives through four-color cartoons, family photos and documents that reflect the artist's struggles with caregiver challenges.

Jason's picture

Added by Jason