Listing books in autobiography

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Full title Boy [permalink]
Language English
Author Roald Dahl (author)
Publisher Cappelen
Category Autobiography
Publication year 2008
Original publication year 1985
ISBN 82-02-19319-2 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 208
Images Back of Boy.Spine of Boy.Front of Boy.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Preface
  • About the Author
  • About the British private school system
  • A map of southern England and Wales
  • BOY
  • Starting-point
  • Llandaff Cathedral School, 1923-25 (age 7-9)
  • St. Peter's, 1925-36 (age 13-20)
  • Vocabulary and comprehension questions
  • Group work
  • Writing activities
Full title Hitch-22: A Memoir [permalink]
Language English
Author Christopher Hitchens (author)
Publisher Atlantic Books
Categories Autobiography and memoir
Publication year 2011
Original publication year 2010
ISBN 978-1-84354-922-2 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 435
Images Back of Hitch-22.Spine of Hitch-22.Front of Hitch-22.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Foreword
  • Prologue with Premonitions
  • Yvonne
  • The Commander
  • Fragments from an Education
  • Cambridge
  • The Sixties: Revolution in the Revolution
  • Chris or Christopher?
  • Havana versus Prague
  • The Fenton Factor
  • Martin
  • Portugal to Poland
  • A Second Identity: On Becoming an (Anglo) American
  • Changing Places
  • Salman
  • Mesopotamia from Both Sides
  • Something of Myself
  • Thinking thrice about the Jewish Question...
  • Edward Said in Light and Shade (and Saul)
  • Decline, Mutation, or Metamorphosis?
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index
Full title I. Asimov: A Memoir [permalink]
Language English
Author Isaac Asimov (author)
Publisher Bantam Books
Category Autobiography
Publication year 1995
Original publication year 1994
ISBN 0-553-56997-X [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 578
Synopsis

This is Asimov's third and last autobiography, started in early 1990 after a complicated operation, and finished in May 1990 (Asimov died in 1992). His two previous autobiographies are called In Memory Yet Green and In Joy Still Felt, and their titles, Asimov tells in this book, are from a poem by Asimov himself:

"In memory yet green, in joy still felt
The scenes of life rise sharply into view.
We triumph; Life's disasters are undealt,
And while all else is old, the world is new."

From this, Asimov wanted to call this third volume The Scenes of Life, but sadly that title didn't survive editorial tampering.

Review

This is a more or less chronological account of Asimov's life, arranged in 166 smallish chapters, each dealing with a different subject or person (Asimov had a lot of well-known friends), and everything is thoroughly entertaining. If you pick up this book, I promise you'll have a hard time putting it down.

Images Back of I. Asimov.Spine of I. Asimov.Front of I. Asimov.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Introduction
  • 1. Infant Prodigy?
  • 2. My Father
  • 3. My Mother
  • 4. Marcia
  • 5. Religion
  • 6. My Name
  • 7. Anti-Semitism
  • 8. Library
  • 9. Bookworm
  • 10. School
  • 11. Growing Up
  • 12. Long Hours
  • 13. Pulp Fiction
  • 14. Science Fiction
  • 15. Beginning to Write
  • 16. Humiliation
  • 17. Failure
  • 18. The Futurians
  • 19. Frederik Pohl
  • 20. Cyril M. Kornbluth
  • 21. Donald Allen Wollheim
  • 22. Early Sales
  • 23. John Wood Campbell, Jr.
  • 24. Robert Anson Heinlein
  • 25. Lyon Sprague de Camp
  • 26. Clifford Donald Simak
  • 27. Jack Williamson
  • 28. Lester del Rey
  • 29. Theodore Sturgeon
  • 30. Graduate School
  • 31. Women
  • 32. Heartbreak
  • 33. "Nightfall"
  • 34. As World War II Begins
  • 35. Master of Arts
  • 36. Pearl Harbor
  • 37. Marriage and Problems
  • 38. In-Laws
  • 39. NAES
  • 40. Life at War's End
  • 41. Games
  • 42. Acrophobia
  • 43. Claustrophobia
  • 44. Ph.D. and Public Speaking
  • 45. Postdoctorate
  • 46. Job Hunting
  • 47. The Big Three
  • 48. Arthur Charles Clarke
  • 49. More Family
  • 50. First Novel
  • 51. New Job at Last
  • 52. Doubleday
  • 53. Gnome Press
  • 54. Boston University School of Medicine
  • 55. Scientific Papers
  • 56. Novels
  • 57. Nonfiction
  • 58. Children
  • 59. David
  • 60. Robyn
  • 61. Off the Cuff
  • 62. Horace Leonard Gold
  • 63. Country Living
  • 64. Automobile
  • 65. Fired!
  • 66. Prolificity
  • 67. Writer's Problems
  • 68. Critics
  • 69. Humor
  • 70. Literary Sex and Censorship
  • 71. Doomsday
  • 72. Style
  • 73. Letters
  • 74. Plagiarism
  • 75. Science Fiction Conventions
  • 76. Anthony Boucher
  • 77. Randall Garrett
  • 78. Harlan Ellison
  • 79. Hal Clement
  • 80. Ben Nova
  • 81. Over My Head
  • 82. Farewell to Science Fiction
  • 83. The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction
  • 84. Janet
  • 85. Mystery Novels
  • 86. Lawrence P. Ashmead
  • 87. Overweight
  • 88. More Conventions
  • 89. Guide to Science
  • 90. Indexes
  • 91. Titles
  • 92. Essay Collections
  • 93. Histories
  • 94. Reference Library
  • 95. Boston University Collection
  • 96. Anthologies
  • 97. Headnotes
  • 98. My Own Hugos
  • 99. Walker & Company
  • 100. Failures
  • 101. Teenagers
  • 102. Al Capp
  • 103. Oases
  • 104. Judy-Lynn del Rey
  • 105. The Bible
  • 106. Hundredth Book
  • 107. Death
  • 108. Life After Death
  • 109. Divorce
  • 110. Second Marriage
  • 111. Guide to Shakespeare
  • 112. Annotations
  • 113. New In-Laws
  • 114. Hospitalizations
  • 115. Cruises
  • 116. Janet's Books
  • 117. Hollywood
  • 118. Star Trek Conventions
  • 119. Short Mysteries
  • 120. Trap Door Spiders
  • 121. Mensa
  • 122. The Dutch Treat Club
  • 123. The Baker Street Irregulars
  • 124. The Gilbert & Sullivan Society
  • 125. Other Clubs
  • 126. American Way
  • 127. Rensselaerville Institute
  • 128. Mohonk Mountain House
  • 129. Travel
  • 130. Foreign Travel
  • 131. Martin Harry Greenberg
  • 132. Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine
  • 133. Autobiography
  • 134. Heart Attack
  • 135. Crown Publishers
  • 136. Simon & Schuster
  • 137. Marginal Items
  • 138. Nightfall, Inc.
  • 139. Hugh Downs
  • 140. Best-seller
  • 141. Out of the Past
  • 142. Word Processor
  • 143. Police
  • 144. Heinz Pagels
  • 145. New Robot Novels
  • 146. Robyn Again
  • 147. Triple Bypass
  • 148. Azazel
  • 149. Fantastic Voyage II
  • 150. Limousines
  • 151. Humanists
  • 152. Senior Citizen
  • 153. More About Doubleday
  • 154. Interviews
  • 155. Honors
  • 156. Russian Relatives
  • 157. Grand Master
  • 158. Children's Books
  • 159. Recent Novels
  • 160. Back to Nonfiction
  • 161. Robert Silverberg
  • 162. Gathering Shadows
  • 163. Threescore Years and Ten
  • 164. Hospital
  • 165. New Autobiography
  • 166. New Life
  • Epilogue, by Janet Asimov
  • Catalogue of Books by Isaac Asimov
Full title Infidel: My Life [permalink]
Original title Mijn Vrijheid
Language English
Author Ayaan Hirsi Ali (author)
Publisher Simon & Schuster
Categories Autobiography and religion
Publication year 2007
Original publication year 2006
ISBN 978-1-4165-2624-7 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 353
Synopsis

The first part of the book is all about Ayaan's upbringing in Somalia (and her later emigrations elsewhere), while the latter part is about her career in the Netherlands and beyond.

Review

Ayaan describes her life in such vivid detail that it's impossible not to be drawn in by her writing. I found the first part of the book, if not boring, then at least not gripping, but by the latter part of the book, I was totally absorbed. She writes with intelligence and wit, and hers is a most amazing story. Highly recommended reading.

Images Back of Infidel.Spine of Infidel.Front of Infidel.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Foreword by Christopher Hitchens
  • Introduction

Part I: My Childhood

  • Chapter 1: Bloodlines
  • Chapter 2: Under the Talal Tree
  • Chapter 3: Playing Tag in Allah's Palace
  • Chapter 4: Weeping Orphans and Widowed Wives
  • Chapter 5: Secret Rendezvous, Sex, and the Scent of Sukumawiki
  • Chapter 6: Doubt and Defiance
  • Chapter 7: Disillusion and Deceit
  • Chapter 8: Refugees
  • Chapter 9: Abeh

Part II: My Freedom

  • Chapter 10: Running Away
  • Chapter 11: A Trial by the Elders
  • Chapter 12: Haweya
  • Chapter 13: Leiden
  • Chapter 14: Leaving God
  • Chapter 15: Threats
  • Chapter 16: Politics
  • Chapter 17: The Murder of Theo
  • Epilogue: The Letter of the Law
  • Acknowledgments
Full title Mortality [permalink]
Language English
Authors Christopher Hitchens (author), Graydon Carter (foreword) and Carol Blue (afterword)
Publisher Twelve
Categories Anthology, autobiography, essay and memoir
Publication year 2012
ISBN 978-1-4555-2347-4 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 104
Synopsis

Mortality is a very short collection of essays that Hitchens wrote for Vanity Fair about his diagnosis of and living with oesophageal cancer. There are forays into other topics, but the essays mainly concern his living with cancer and all that that implies.

"To the dumb question 'Why me?' the cosmos barely bothers to return the reply: Why not?"

Review

It's a very short book, but the essays are interesting. If you're familiar with Hitchens' output, then you know what to expect.

Images Back of Mortality.Spine of Mortality.Front of Mortality.
Full title Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character [permalink]
Language English
Author Richard Feynman (author)
Category Autobiography
Publication year 1985
Pages 205
Synopsis

The book is a fascinating look into the mind of one of the 20th century's top physicist, the eccentric free spirit Richard Feynman. It's a mostly chronological account of the interesting moments of his life, from his childhood when he fixed radios, to his mischief at MIT, to Princeton, to Los Alamos (where he worked on the bomb and cracked safes for fun), to Cornell, to Brazil, to Japan. The stories are engagingly told as anecdotes, which is partly why it's such an interesting read (and partly because the stories are inherently interesting).

Review

I think I can honestly say that this book is excellent all the way through. At no point was I bored. In fact, I grinned to myself at least three times and almost cried once (honest).

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