Memoir

Good for Book Clubs

Read It Forward features celebrity biographies and fascinating memoirs. For readers who enjoy reading real-life stories that amaze and inspire.

Your Reading Life Good for Book Clubs

Loved That? Read This! Celebrity Author Edition

Naturally, many of us are curious about celebrities beyond what we see on the big (and little) screen. More so now than ever before, celebs are writing their memoirs and use them as an opportunity to take a stand on political issues, share juicy on-set details and let us into their personal histories from before they were ever mobbed by paparazzi. We’ve paired five current celeb bestsellers with read-alikes from the vault to keep you in good celebrity memoir standing. All are interesting, insightful and poignant. Enjoy!

Loved That? Modern Love by Aziz Ansari

Read This: A Sort of History of the United States by Dave Barry

We love funny men. Much like Aziz Ansari’s recounting of our collective romantic history in Modern Love, A Sort of History retells the story of the founding of our nation in the droll voice we have come to expect from Barry, an award-winning author best known for his long-running humor column in The Miami Herald.

Loved That? Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison

Read This: Here’s the Story: Surviving Marcia Brady and Finding My True Voice by Maureen McCormick

Marcia, Marcia, Marcia! Just as Holly describes the (horrifying) behind-the-scenes world of the Playboy mansion, McCormick rehashes the dark side of growing up in the spotlight and shedding her squeaky-clean image. Surprisingly more disturbing than Madison’s tale, you will not be able to put this memoir down.

Perfect for Book Clubs Good for Book Clubs

Book Club Kit for Spinster by Kate Bolick

Why are you excited about reading Spinster? Tell us in a comment and you could win a gorgeous printed copy of the Spinster Book Club Kit!

Spinster is – in the words on the author, Kate Bolick – “a memoir by way of biography – the story of my own coming-to-adulthood woven through the lives of five women from the last century: columnist Neith Boyce, essayist Maeve Brennan, social visionary Charlotte Perkins Gilman, poet Edna St. Vincent Millay, and novelist Edith Wharton. I call them my ‘awakeners,’ for how their genius, tenacity, and flair for drama emboldened me to live independently at the dawn of this century, and showed me that contemporary debates about settling down, and having it all, are timeless. Explore these awakeners with these limited edition paper dolls, a cocktail menu, a recommended reading list, and a discussion guide.”

Giveaways Good for Book Clubs

Win the Book Everybody’s Going to Be Talking About: Spinster by Kate Bolick

A bold, original, moving book that will inspire fanatical devotion and ignite debate.

We know people like to say that a lot – “this book is going to get everybody talking!” – but we really mean it with Spinster by Kate Bolick. It’s already been named one of Flavorwire’s ’10 Books That Will Define the Conversation in 2015,’ one of Newsday‘s ‘Books Not to Miss,’ one of Bookpage’s ’15 Books We Can’t Wait to Read in 2015,’ and the list goes on and on. You get the idea.

Spinster is going to change the way we think about those splendid years when we were young and unencumbered, or middle-aged and finally left to our own devices. It’s about living an authentic life: unbounded and our own to savor.

Giveaways Good for Book Clubs

Win a Copy of Giuliana Rancic’s Hilarious Memoir Going Off Script

A witty, warm, and inspiring memoir from the E News! host, Fashion Police panelist, red-carpet correspondent, author, and reality show star Giuliana Rancic.

From a young age she dreamed of being a TV anchorwoman but, because of her inclination toward mischief and away from schoolwork, her path to her dream job was far from straight. After a fateful (and mortifying) encounter with the late Senator Ted Kennedy, she learned that Hollywood news was where she belonged.

Thankfully for readers, this epiphany led her to a bounty of LA misadventures (featuring notables such as Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Russell Crowe) and an entertaining behind-the-scenes perspective on what our favorite celebrities are really like.

Giveaways Good for Book Clubs

You Could Win a Frances Mayes Library!

Read It Forward is celebrating the paperback release of Frances Mayes’ lyrical and evocative memoir Under Magnolia by giving away a Frances Mayes Library!

We’re sharing nine of Frances Mayes’ books – count ’em, nine: four books about life in Tuscany, including her beloved memoirs Under the Tuscan Sun and Every Day in Tuscany; two stunning travel books; a cookbook packed with delicious recipes; a gorgeous interior design book; and her novel, Swan.

It’s a sumptuous collection! Perfect for fans of Under the Tuscan Sun (the book or the movie), armchair travel, and Italian cooking and design. Also perfect for book clubs who want to create an extra special meeting complete with delicious food and insights from the author.

Giveaways Good for Book Clubs

Delicious Biography of the 20st Century’s First Global Celebrity

A lively and provocative double biography of first cousins Eleanor Roosevelt and Alice Roosevelt Longworth, two extraordinary women whose tangled lives provide a sweeping look at the twentieth century.

When Theodore Roosevelt became president in 1901, his beautiful and flamboyant daughter was transformed into “Princess Alice,” arguably the century’s first global celebrity.

Thirty-two years later, her first cousin Eleanor moved into the White House as First Lady. Born eight months and twenty blocks apart from each other in New York City, Eleanor and Alice spent a large part of their childhoods together and were far more alike than most historians acknowledge.

Author Essay Good for Book Clubs

A Real-Life Doctor on Watching Hospital Dramas on TV

“It turns out Grey’s Anatomy got hospital life mostly right. (The call rooms are actually for naps, not necking). But the viewing experience in no way prepared me for the lysergic roller coaster of practicing actual medicine. “

“I was crazy about Grey’s” admits Matt McCarthy, doctor and author of The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly, “and all medical shows, really—because I was dying to know what being a doctor was really like.

Was it that intense? Did physicians ever screw up? Or yell at each other? And did they really hook up in those cramped on-call rooms? I desperately wanted to know . . . . For the first few months, I felt like I was on a tv show, playing the part of a real doctor—one who was well-intentioned but ultimately overwhelmed—and occasionally flattened by the daily tragedy of watching people die.”

Giveaways Good for Book Clubs

Hilarious Memoir of a Year in the Life of an Almost-Doctor

The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly offers a window on to hospital life that dispenses with sanctimony and self-seriousness while emphasizing the black-comic paradox of becoming a doctor: How do you learn to save lives in a job where there is no practice?

In medical school, Matt McCarthy dreamed of being a different kind of doctor—the sort of mythical, unflappable physician who could reach unreachable patients. But when a new admission to the critical care unit almost died his first night on call, he found himself scrambling.

This funny, candid memoir of McCarthy’s intern year at a New York hospital provides a scorchingly frank look at how doctors are made, taking readers into patients’ rooms and doctors’ conferences to witness a physician’s journey from ineptitude to competence.