This season promises not to be a drag, though the word finds another meaning in memoirs from a winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race and the star of the TV show Pose. Also, be on the lookout for an oral biography of Anthony Bourdain, as well as a tell-all from the frontman of the Foo Fighters.
Beautiful Country: A Memoir
Qian Julie Wang. Doubleday, Sept. 7 ($28.95, ISBN 978-0-385-54721-5)
Wang reconsiders the American Dream in this account of her childhood living as an undocumented immigrant in 1990s New York City.
Bourdain: The Definitive Oral Biography
Laurie Woolever. Ecco, Sept. 28 ($28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-290910-7)
Anthony Bourdain’s longtime assistant provides an in-depth look at the late chef and TV host’s life through accounts from his closest friends and colleagues around the world.
Hello, My Name’s Yours, What’s Alaska? A Memoir
Alaska Thunderfuck 5000. Chronicle, Oct. 26 ($24.95, ISBN 978-1-7972-0322-5)
Alaska, winner of the second season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars, dishes on her small-town upbringing and shares a behind-the-scenes account of her life on stage.
Bernardine Evaristo. Grove, Jan. 11 ($27, ISBN 978-0-8021-5890-1)
The author of Girl, Woman, Other reflects on the determined writing career that led her to become the first Black woman and first Black British person to win the Booker Prize.
Now Beacon, Now Sea: A Son’s Memoir
Christopher Sorrentino. Catapult, Sept. 7 ($26, ISBN 978-1-64622-042-7)
Sorrentino, a National Book Award finalist, recounts the complicated life of his Puerto Rican mother, who died in 2017, to better understand his own identity.
Real Estate: A Living Autobiography
Deborah Levy. Bloomsbury, Aug. 24 ($20, ISBN 978-1-63557-221-6)
Levy completes her trilogy of autobiographies with this personal investigation of womanhood and ownership. 70,000-copy announced first printing.
The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music
Dave Grohl. Dey Street, Oct. 5 ($29.99, ISBN 978-0-06-307609-9)
Grohl, Foo Fighters frontman and erstwhile Nirvana drummer, replays his greatest hits, from a childhood in Virginia to a star-studded rock career.
Taste: My Life Through Food
Stanley Tucci. Gallery, Oct. 5 ($28, ISBN 978-1-9821-6801-8)
Actor and cookbook author Tucci looks back at his lifelong love affair with food, from childhood meals with his Italian American family to playing Julia Child’s husband in the film Julie and Julia.
Unbound: My Story of Liberation and the Birth of the Me Too Movement
Tarana Burke. Flatiron/Oprah, Sept. 14 ($28.99, ISBN 978-1-250-62173-3)
The founder and activist behind the #MeToo movement sheds light on how her own personal experience with assault led her to utter those two words.
Unprotected: A Memoir
Billy Porter. Abrams, Oct. 5 ($28, ISBN 978-1-4197-4619-2)
Porter, Emmy Award–winning star of the TV show Pose and Tony Award–winning actor from Broadway’s Kinky Boots, reflects on the adversity and triumphs he endured growing up Black and gay in America.
Memoirs & Biographies Listings
Most Dope: The Extra-ordinary Life of Mac Miller by Paul Cantor (Jan. 18, $25, ISBN 978-1-4197-4800-4). Music critic Cantor chronicles the life of the late Mac Miller, who died at age 26, in the first biography of the rapper.
Divine Lola: A True Story of Scandal and Celebrity by Cristina Morató, trans. by Andrea Rosenberg (Sept. 1, $14.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-5420-2511-9), traces the true story of Lola Montez, one of the 19th-century’s most revered and maligned female celebrities.
Bad Fat Black Girl: Notes from a Trap Feminist by Sesali Bowen (Oct. 5, $24.99, ISBN 978-0-06-302870-8). The senior entertainment writer at Refinery29, mixes memoir and cultural criticism in this account of how trap music influenced her life as a queer Black feminist.
Camera Man: Buster Keaton, the Dawn of Cinema, and the Invention of the Twentieth Century by Dana Stevens (Oct. 5, $28, ISBN 978-1-5011-3419-7). Slate’s chief movie critic recounts the rise to fame of comedian and filmmaker Buster Keaton while exploring the evolution of film in the 1940s.
Chasing Me to My Grave: An Artist’s Memoir of the Jim Crow South by Winfred Rembert, as told to Erin I. Kelly (Aug. 10, $30, ISBN 978-1-63557-659-7). “In this posthumous work, artist Rembert (1945–2021) offers a powerful, unfiltered look at life growing up in Jim Crow Georgia,” according to PW’s starred review. 150,000-copy announced first printing.
The Farmer’s Lawyer: The North Dakota Nine and the Fight to Save the Family Farm by Sarah Vogel (Oct. 19, $28, ISBN 978-1-63557-526-2). Vogel, the first woman elected North Dakota’s commissioner of agriculture, revisits the legal battle she brought against the Reagan administration to protect farmers’ rights. 75,000-copy announced first printing.
Made in China: A Memoir of Love and Labor by Anna Qu (Aug. 3, $26, ISBN 978-1-64622-034-2). “Qu rewrites the bootstrap narrative of immigrants building a better life for their children in her grim and entrancing debut,” says PW’s starred review.
Brothers on Three: A True Story of Family, Resistance, and Hope on a Reservation in Montana by Abe Streep (Sept. 7, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-250-21068-5). Journalist Streep writes of how one high school basketball team’s championship brought about a new future for the Flathead Indian Reservation.
Tied Up in Knotts: My Dad and Me by Karen Knotts (Sept. 21, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-64160-512-0) presents a behind-the-scenes look at the life of the author’s father, Don Knotts, who garnered legions of fans for his role as Barney Fife on The Andy Griffith Show.
Madder: A Memoir in Weeds by Marco Wilkinson (Oct. 12, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-56689-618-4). Horticulturist Wilkinson uses plants as a lens though which to meditate on his family history and his childhood in Rhode Island as the son of an Uruguayan immigrant.
A Tale of Two Omars: A Memoir of Family, Revolution, and Coming Out During the Arab Spring by Omar Sharif (Oct. 5, $26, ISBN 978-1-64009-498-7). The grandson of the late Egyptian actor Omar Sharif recalls his public coming out in the wake of the Arab Spring and the lessons he learned from his family along the way.
1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows: A Memoir by Ai Weiwei (Nov. 2, $32, ISBN 978-0-553-41946-7). Artist and human rights activist Weiwei chronicles China’s fraught history through his experience of exile and the legacy his father, the celebrated poet Ai Qing, left behind.
Dot Dot Dot: My Adventures in the Weird, Complicated, and Mostly Human Side of Tech by Laurie Segall (Jan. 18, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-06-301644-6). The former CNN senior tech correspondent looks back at her rise through the ranks of New York’s tech scene in the wake of the financial crisis.
Sea State: A Memoir by Tabitha Lasley (Dec. 7, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-06-303083-1) relates Lasley’s experience reporting on North Sea oil riggers and the personal reckoning that sprang from it.
How to Be a Girl: A Mother’s Memoir of Raising Her Transgender Daughter by Marlo Mack (Oct. 26, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-61519-798-9). The producer of the podcast How to Be a Girl reflects on the joys and struggles of raising her transgender daughter, M.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Miss Dior: A Story of Courage and Couture by Justine Picardie (Oct. 19, $35, ISBN 978-0-374-21035-9) explores the life of Catherine Dior, the sister and muse of French designer Christian Dior.
I’m Possible: A Story of Survival, a Tuba, and the Small Miracle of a Big Dream by Richard Antoine White (Oct. 5, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-250-26964-5). White recalls his hardscrabble childhood in Baltimore and the path that led him to become a principal tubist in the Santa Fe Symphony and New Mexico Philharmonic.
I Live a Life Like Yours: A Memoir by Jan Grue, trans. by B.L. Crook (Aug. 17, $17 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-374-60078-5). “Norwegian novelist Grue... elegantly flows between memoir, essay, and intellectual discourse in this magnificent story about living with a disability,” says PW’s starred review.
Full Out: Lessons in Life and Leadership from America’s Favorite Coach by Monica Aldama (Jan. 4, $28, ISBN 978-1-9821-6591-8). Cheerleading coach Aldama, from the Netflix docuseries Cheer, uses her personal story building one of the most successful cheerleading teams in the country to guide others on how they can accomplish their own wins.
Sometimes I Trip on How Happy We Could Be by Nichole Perkins (Aug. 17, $17.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-5387-0274-1). “Perkins... a poet and former cohost of the Thirst Aid Kit podcast, examines religion, Black womanhood, desire, and sexuality in this powerful work of cultural criticism,” says PW’s review.
Mennonite Valley Girl: A Wayward Coming of Age by Carla Funk (Sept. 14, $26.95, ISBN 978-1-77164-515-7). A former poet laureate for the city of Victoria reflects on her 1980s adolescence growing up in one of the first Mennonite communities in British Columbia.
King of the Blues: The Rise and Reign of B.B. King by Daniel de Vise (Oct. 5, $30, ISBN 978-0-8021-5805-5). Journalist de Vise takes an in-depth look at the life of B.B. King in the first comprehensive biography of the influential blues musician.
Unrequited Infatuations: A Memoir by Stevie Van Zandt (Sept. 28, $31, ISBN 978-0-306-92542-9). The Bruce Springsteen E Street Band guitarist and Sopranos star reveals how he went from a devout Baptist in the early ’60s to a rock ’n’ roll legend.
God Bless This Mess: Learning to Live and Love Through the Best (and Worst) Moments by Hannah Brown (Nov. 23, $26.99, ISBN 978-0-06-309820-6). The former Bachelorette reflects on her life and path to finding the right one.
Age of Cage: Four Decades of Hollywood Through One Singular Career by Keith Phipps (Nov. 9, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-250-77304-3). A.V. Club editor Phipps attempts to demystify the story of Nicholas Cage through a sweeping survey of his decades-long filmography.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The Redemption of Bobby Love: A Story of Faith, Family, and Justice by Bobby and Cheryl Love (Oct. 5, $28, ISBN 978-0-358-56605-2) tells the story of the lengths one New Yorker went to in order to hide his identity as an escaped convict.
Kevin Smith’s Secret Stash: The Definitive Visual History (Classic Movies, Film History, Cinema Books) by Kevin Smith (Sept. 7, $65, ISBN 978-1-68383-099-3). The famed director and star of the hit indie film Clerks offers an inside look at the most memorable moments of his life and career in this illustrated volume.
All In: An Autobiography by Billie Jean King (Aug. 17, $30, ISBN 978-1-101-94733-3). The 20-time Wimbledon champion and winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom writes of her career, as well as her activism in fighting for LGBTQ rights. 150,000-copy announced first printing.
There’s a Hole in My Bucket: A Journey of Two Brothers by Royd Tolkien (Aug. 1, $14.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-5420-2757-1). The great-grandson of J.R.R. Tolkien recounts the years he spent traveling from Norway to New Zealand with his ailing brother, and the bucket list he continued to check off after the brother’s death.
Going There by Katie Couric (Oct. 26, $30, ISBN 978-0-316-53586-1). The former CBS Evening News anchor and media titan opens up about her turbulent past and career.
Saga Boy: My Life of Blackness and Becoming by Antonio Michael Downing (Sept. 14, $25, ISBN 978-1-57131-191-7) reckons with the colonial history of Downing’s native Trinidad and coming-of-age with his evangelical aunt in rural Canada.
Sex Cult Nun: Breaking Away from the Children of God, a Wild, Radical Religious Cult by Faith Jones (Nov. 30, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-06-295245-5). Jones revisits her past growing up in the religious sex cult founded by her grandfather and how she escaped at the age of 23.
New York Review Books
To Believe in the Animal by Nastassja Martin, trans. by Sophie Lewis (Nov. 2, $18.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68137-585-4). French anthropologist Martin reflects on the transformative experience that came after surviving a bear attack in Russia.
I Was a French Muslim by Mokhtar Mokhtefi, trans. by Elaine Mokhtefi (Sept. 21, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-63542-180-4). Mokhtefi writes of coming-of-age as a Muslim under French colonial rule and his time fighting for Algerian independence in the National Liberation Army in the 1950s.
Warmth: Coming of Age at the End of Our World by Daniel Sherrell (Aug. 3, $17 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-14-313653-8). “Climate activist Sherrell brilliantly balances despair and hope in his searing debut that confronts the impending climate catastrophe,” PW’s starred review said.
Ladyparts: A Memoir by Deborah Copaken (Aug. 3, $29.99, ISBN 978-1-9848-5547-3). The Emmy Award–winning news producer, photojournalist, and author of Shutterbabe looks back at the seven illnesses that challenged her body and mind as a single mother fresh out of a divorce.
Concepcion: An Immigrant Family’s Fortunes by Albert Samaha (Oct. 12, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-08608-7). Investigative journalist Samaha paints a personal portrait of the immigrant experience by placing his Filipinx-American family’s history against a backdrop of imperialism.
Shaun White: Airborne by Shaun White (Oct. 5, $55, ISBN 978-0-8478-7095-0). Olympic snowboarding gold medalist White presents an illustrated behind-the-scenes look at his action-packed life.
Simon & Schuster
This Will All Be Over Soon: A Memoir by Cecily Strong (Aug. 10, $28, ISBN 978-1-9821-6831-5). “Saturday Night Live cast member Strong shows her serious side in this... earnest memoir about the death of her cousin,” said PW’s review.
High-Risk Homosexual: A Memoir by Edgar Gomez (Jan. 11, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-59376-705-1). Reconciling his Latinx identity and queerness, Gomez writes a coming-of-age story that ranges from his uncle’s Nicaraguan cockfighting ring to gay clubs across the U.S.
Windswept: Walking the Paths of Trailblazing Women by Annabel Abbs (Sept. 7, $26.95, ISBN 978-1-951142-70-4). Novelist Abbs sets out on an odyssey to retrace the footsteps of some of history’s most brilliant women—Georgia O’Keeffe and Daphne du Maurier among them—in this meditation on walking as an act of liberation.
The Prisoner: A Memoir by Hwang Sok-Yong, trans. by Sora Kim-Russell and Anton Hur (Aug. 3, $34.95, ISBN 978-1-83976-083-9). Korean novelist Hwang recounts his five-year imprisonment in Seoul after being arrested in 1993 upon returning from a trip to North Korea.
Orwell’s Roses by Rebecca Solnit (Oct. 19, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-08336-9). After discovering a plot of surviving roses that George Orwell planted in 1936, Solnit embarks on an exploration of the author’s love of nature and how it influenced his writing.
This article has been updated with new bibliographic information for some titles.