Top 10 Biographies

van-gogh-the-life-coverVan Gogh: The Life by Steven Naifeh: Draws on newly available primary sources to present an in-depth, accessible profile that offers revisionist assessments of the influential artist’s turbulent life and genius works.

Literary Outlaw: The Life and Times of William S. Burroughs by Ted Morgan: A wild ride through the life of William S. Burroughs, a violent and reckless man whose history is just as bizarre as the fiction he wrote.

Life Itself by Roger Ebert: This personal, candid history explores the life of Roger Ebert, one of the most widely known film critics of our time, through his loves, losses, obsessions and trials.

Just Kids by Patti Smith: In this tough, tender memoir, singer-songwriter Patti Smith transports readers to what seemed like halcyon days for art and artists in New York as she shares tales of the denizens of Max’s Kansas City, the Hotel Chelsea, Scribner’s, Brentano’s and Strand bookstores and her new life in Brooklyn with a young man named Robert Mapplethorpe–the man who changed her life with his love, friendship, and genius.

content.chilifreshFemme Fatale by Pat Shipman: A portrait of the notorious early twentieth-century spy considers the theory that she may have been innocent of the charges for which she was executed, in an account that profiles her as a complicated seducer of men who had an unusual talent for manipulation.

Losing Mum and Pup by Christopher Buckley: Details how the author coped with the passing of his parents, William F. Buckley, Jr., the father of the modern conservative movement, and Patricia Taylor Buckley, one of New York’s most colorful socialites, between 2007 and 2008.

Poe: A Life Cut Short by Peter Ackroyd: Explores Poe’s literary accomplishments and legacy against the background of his erratic, dramatic, and sometimes sordid life, including his marriage to his thirteen-year-old cousin and his much-written-about problems with gambling and alcohol.

American Rebel: the Life of Clint Eastwood by Marc Eliot: A well-researched, updated, and comprehensive biography of the motion picture actor and Oscar-winning director of Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby.

Diary of a Mad Diva by Joan Rivers: A no-holds-barred … look at the everyday life of the ultimate diva. Follow Joan on a family vacation in Mexico and on trips between New York and Los Angeles where she mingles with the stars, never missing a beat as she delivers blistering critiques on current events, and excoriating insights about life, pop culture, and celebrities.

John Adams by David McCullough: Pulitzer-prize winning author David McCullough takes us on an epic journey through the life of the brilliant and independent John Adams. The story ranges from Adam’s beginnings on a Massachusetts farm to the Boston Massacre to Philadelphia, Versailles, Spain and Amsterdam, and the Court of St. James, and on to the capital where Adams was the first President to occupy the White House.

content.chilifresh-1A Beautiful Mind by Sylvia Nasar: Traces the meteoric rise of John Forbes Nash, Jr., a prodigy and legend by the age of thirty, who dazzled the mathematical world by solving a series of deep problems deemed “impossible” by other mathematicians. But at the height of his fame, Nash suffered a catastrophic mental breakdown and began a harrowing descent into insanity, resigning his post at MIT, slipping into a series of bizarre delusions, and eventually becoming a dreamy, ghostlike figure at Princeton, scrawling numerological messages on blackboards. He was all but forgotten by the outside world until, remarkably, he emerged from his madness to win world acclaim.


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