Tag: Autobiography

Die Jugendstreiche des Knaben Karl by Karl Valentin

Jugendstreiche des Knaben Karl

The editors of the Süddeutsche Zeitung began their series of 20 books in or involving Munich with a local icon, Siegfried Sommer. They finished the set with Karl Valentin, who was born in Munich and grew up in the city but went on to become a national icon as a comedic star on stage, in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/05/29/die-jugendstreiche-des-knaben-karl-by-karl-valentin/

Punch Me Up To The Gods: A Memoir by Brian Broome

Structured around Gwendolyn Brooks’ seminal poem We Real Cool and a bus ride where Brian Broome observed a young Black boy named Tuan interacting with his father, this autobiography in essays is a profound, powerful examination of the life of a gay black man growing up in late 20th century America. Born and raised in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/05/18/punch-me-up-to-the-gods-a-memoir-by-brian-broome/

Childtimes: A Three-Generation Memoir by Eloise Greenfield & Lessie Jones Little

Background on why I picked up this book: apparently, it was one of the three selections available to my 10 year-old for an autobiography reading assignment he had for school. I’m not sure how he wound up with this book instead of the other two, but it doesn’t really matter. What matters is that he …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/04/20/childtimes-a-three-generation-memoir-by-eloise-greenfield-lessie-jones-little/

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

I read Between the World and Me a lifetime ago, in early summer when it was strange to leave the neighborhood again after so many weeks of stillness. It is a hard book, not because of the difficulty of language or of its concepts, but because of the hardness of its subject: how to live …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/11/15/between-the-world-and-me-by-ta-nehisi-coates/

The Paper Boat: A Refugee Story by Thao Lam

This powerful picture book is a wordless recreation via metaphor of the author’s family’s journey from Vietnam to Canada at the end of the Vietnam War. Only two at the time, Thao Lam remembers little of the events themselves, but has taken her mother’s story and crafted it beautifully for this children’s book. Working in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/09/30/the-paper-boat-a-refugee-story-by-thao-lam/

The ChildThat Books Built by Francis Spufford

The Child that Books Built by Francis Spufford

The Child That Books Built, Francis Spufford’s second book, published six years after his first, raises a publishing question that I have long been interested in, but one that I suspect does not have any firm answer. How does an editor spot someone whose first book or two are strong but who is likely to …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/08/28/the-child-that-books-built-by-francis-spufford/

M Train by Patti Smith

M Train by Patti Smith

I loved Just Kids — it was one of my very favorite books of 2014 — so why didn’t M Train do much for me? Smith gives a bit of a warning in the book’s very first line, “It’s not so easy writing about nothing.” (p. 3) The speaker is a cowpoke who is in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/02/11/m-train-by-patti-smith/

More Becoming by Michelle Obama

“Becoming Us,” the second part of Michelle Obama’s memoir tells how two very different people, two nearly polar opposite people in fact, came not only to love and cherish one another but to build a life and a partnership that would work from Chicago to the whole world. One of their first social functions together, …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/11/26/more-becoming-by-michelle-obama/

Schellingstrasse 48 by Walter Kolbenhoff

Schellingstrasse 48

For all that it is a Millionenstadt, Munich can also be quite a small town. Literary and artistic Munich even more so. Thus it’s not very surprising that in Schellingstrasse 48 (48 Schelling St.), Walter Kolbenhoff’s memoir of the Nazi era, POW internment in America, and early post-war Munich, other authors from the Süddeutsche Zeitung‘s …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/09/21/schellingstrasse-48-by-walter-kolbenhoff/

Lines Composed a Few Yards from Schlachtensee, With Apologies to W.W.

Five years have past; five summers, with the length Of five long winters! and again I read These pages, rolled from their printing-press With a rotary hum.—Once again Do I behold those last and polished drafts That many a wild scene describe, Acts the more connected to themes And th’ arguments of the plays. The …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/09/20/lines-composed-a-few-yards-from-schlachtensee-with-apologies-to-w-w/