Open Candice Bergen’s A Fine Romance and be prepared to settle in for an evening filled with a few drinks, casual grazing, laughter, tears and rollicking tales from one of America’s finest actresses.
When Mimi Baird was 6 years old, her father, prominent Boston dermatologist Perry Baird, didn’t come home. In that moment, Baird effectively disappeared forever from his daughter’s life, for her mother told her only that he was “away.” Baird saw her father once in the 15 years between his disappearance and his death in 1959.
“It began with a death in the family. My Uncle Ed, the most debonair of the clan, a popular guest of the Gentile social clubs despite being Jewish, had succumbed at age ninety-five with a half glass of Johnnie Walker on his bedside table.”
In most biographies, an epilogue provides the story of what happens after the subject of the book has died or somehow left the scene. It’s a wrapping up, a life-after-life afterthought.
“In the summer of 2005, I was at a Burger King with Harper Lee.” With those tantalizing opening words, former Chicago Tribune reporter Marja Mills has us hooked. We want to know not just why the reclusive Harper Lee is talking to a journalist, but also why she and the novelist are sitting in a Burger King, of all places.
Young Saroo loves his older brothers, especially Guddu, who at 14 is less and less at home. One night in 1986, Guddu comes back to his family’s poor village in India for about an hour, and 5-year-old Saroo can’t contain his excitement. When Guddu announces that he’s leaving, Saroo declares that he’s going off into the night with his older brother.
From the Duke boys’ car named the General Lee on the “Dukes of Hazzard” TV show to his appearance on a U.S. postage stamp, Robert E. Lee has come to “embody and glorify a defeated cause,” Michael Korda asserts in a monumental new biography, Clouds of Glory: The Life and Legend of Robert E. Lee.
When he died in 2005—his body weakened by years of freebasing cocaine, as well as heart disease, multiple sclerosis and a freak accident with a cigarette lighter that had set him ablaze in 1990—Richard Pryor had already won one Emmy and five Grammys. Yet his position at number one on Comedy Central’s list of the all-time greatest comedians defines his enduring legacy more than...
After a drunk driver killed Jesmyn Ward’s younger brother, Joshua, in a horrific car accident, the court sentenced the driver, who was white, to five years in jail for leaving the scene of an accident, but declined to charge him with vehicular manslaughter. Ward, in disbelief, thought to herself, “This is what my brother’s life is worth in Mississippi. Five years.” In...
Many memoirs tell a straightforward tale of the narrator’s life from birth to the present stage of their lives, reflecting along the way on the failures and foibles of parents and family, on the disappointments of first love or the horrors and joys of school, or on the ragged way that the narrator recognizes and embraces, or refuses to embrace, his identity.You’ll find many of these...