Fall brings several titles on complicated families and digital ennui, plus celebrity memoirs from Sly Stone, Barbra Streisand, and Henry Winkler.
Class: A Memoir of Motherhood, Hunger, and Higher Education
Stephanie Land. One Signal, Nov. 7 ($28, ISBN 978-1-982151-39-3)
Maid author Land returns with an account of her attempts to finish college and embark on a writing career despite economic barriers.
Everything I Learned, I Learned in a Chinese Restaurant: A Memoir
Curtis Chin. Little, Brown, Oct. 17 ($30, ISBN 978-0-316-50765-3)
Filmmaker Chin reflects on the community center Chinese restaurant that helped him survive his young adulthood as a gay Asian American in 1980s Detroit.
Everything/Nothing/Someone: A Memoir
Alice Carrière. Spiegel & Grau, Aug. 29 ($28, ISBN 978-1-954118-29-4)
In a debut memoir that PW’s starred review called “brutal and illuminating,” the daughter of American artist Jennifer Bartlett and German actor Mathieu Carrière traces her struggles with dissociative disorder to her troubled childhood.
How to Say Babylon: A Memoir
Safiya Sinclair. Simon & Schuster, Oct. 3 ($28.99, ISBN 978-1-982132-33-0)
Poet Sinclair wrestles with her Rastafarian upbringing in Jamaica and her relationship with her domineering father, a musician who was bent on shielding the women in his family from European and American influences.
My Name Is Barbra
Barbra Streisand. Viking, Nov. 7 ($45, ISBN 978-0-525-42952-4)
In her first autobiography, the EGOT winner details her early life in Brooklyn, her budding nightclub career in the 1960s, and her eventual success in theater, film, and music.
Sondheim: His Life, His Shows, His Legacy
Stephen M. Silverman. Black Dog & Leventhal, Sept. 19 ($35, ISBN 978-0-7624-8235-1)
Judy Collins, Joanna Gleason, and others discuss their memories of the composer behind Sweeney Todd and Into the Woods in this biography, which contains more than 200 photos.
Sure, I’ll Join Your Cult: A Memoir of Mental Illness and the Quest to Belong Anywhere
Maria Bamford. Gallery, Sept. 5 ($28.99, ISBN 978-1-982168-56-8)
Comedian Bamford opens up about her stints in psychiatric institutions and her lifelong quest to balance her desire to fit in with her stubborn outsider sensibility.
Tupac Shakur: The Authorized Biography
Staci Robinson. Crown, Oct. 24 ($35, ISBN 978-1-5247-6104-2)
In the first authorized bio of Tupac Shakur, the hip-hop legend’s childhood friend Robinson—a screenwriter—digs through his notebooks, letters, and unpublished lyrics.
Unearthing: A Story of Tangled Love and Family Secrets
Kyo Maclear. Scribner, Aug. 22 ($29, ISBN 978-1-66801-260-4)
After novelist Maclear’s father died, a DNA test revealed the two weren’t related. While tracking down her birth father, she questions the nature and value of blood relationships.
Waiting to Be Arrested at Night: A Uyghur Poet’s Memoir of China’s Genocide
Tahir Hamut Izgil, trans. by Joshua L. Freeman. Penguin Press, Aug. 1 ($28, ISBN 978-0-593-49179-9)
Poet Izgil fled China’s genocide of Uyghur Muslims for the U.S. after surviving three years in a prison camp. According to PW’s starred review, this is an “astonishing account” of that experience.
Memoirs & Biographies longlist
Our Secret Society: Mollie Moon and the Glamour, Money, and Power Behind the Civil Rights Movement by Tanisha C. Ford (Oct. 24, $32.99, ISBN 978-0-06-311571-2) details how Moon, an adviser to Eleanor Roosevelt and president of the National Urban League’s fund-raising arm, developed a glitzy annual ball that helped fund the civil rights movement.
Seeing: A Memoir of Truth and Courage from China’s Most Influential Television Journalist by Chai Jing, trans. by Yan Yan and Jack Hargreaves (Aug. 15, $27, ISBN 978-1-66260-067-8). Jing, a star anchor at China’s official state news channel, discusses her experiences facing down corruption and workplace sexism while covering SARS, climate change, and other hot-button issues.
Atlantic Monthly Press
Chinese Prodigal: A Memoir in Eight Arguments by David Shih (Aug. 15, $28, ISBN 978-0-8021-5899-4) examines how the author’s Asian-American identity informed his fraught relationship with his Chinese immigrant father, who died in a Texas hospital before his son made the trip to see him.
Congratulations, the Best Is Over! Essays by R. Eric Thomas (Aug. 8, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-49626-8) follows up 2020’s Here for It with a collection of vignettes about playwright Thomas’s return home to Baltimore that PW’s starred review called “hilariously candid.”
Being Henry: The Fonz... and Beyond by Henry Winkler (Oct. 31, $30, ISBN 978-1-250-88809-9). Happy Days star Winkler discusses creating one of TV’s most indelible characters, his struggles with dyslexia, and his difficult childhood.
The Wingmen: The Unlikely, Unusual, Unbreakable Friendship Between John Glenn and Ted Williams by Adam Lazarus (Aug. 22, $29, ISBN 978-0-8065-4250-8) documents the bond between astronaut and U.S. senator John Glenn and baseball superstar Ted Williams, both of whom served in WWII and the Korean War.
Mother, Nature: A 5,000-Mile Journey to Discover If a Mother and Son Can Survive Their Differences by Jedidiah Jenkins (Nov. 7, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-13726-0). Gay travel writer Jenkins embarks on a trek from New Orleans to Oregon with his conservative 70-year-old mother, retracing steps she took decades earlier with his father.
My Life Is Art: 11 Pillars for a Positive and Purposeful Life by Emmanuel Jal (Dec. 5, $28, ISBN 978-1-64622-038-0) draws on the author’s life as a Sudanese child soldier turned-artist to offer guidance on thriving in the face of adversity.
Worthy by Jada Pinkett Smith (Oct. 17, $32, ISBN 978-0-06-332068-0). The actor and Red Table host reflects on her career, high-profile marriage to Will Smith, and circuitous journey to self-fulfillment.
Flirting with Danger: The Mysterious Life of Marguerite Harrison, Socialite Spy by Janet Wallach (Aug. 8, $30, ISBN 978-0-385-54508-2) zeroes in on a widowed Baltimore culture writer who drew on her high-society social skills to become an undercover agent with U.S. Army intelligence between the world wars, and wound up a Soviet prisoner.
A Part of the Heart Can’t Be Eaten: A Memoir by Tristan Taormino (Sept. 5, $29.95, ISBN 978-1-4780-2022-6) discusses the activist and porn director’s Long Island childhood and summers in Provincetown with her father, who came out as gay in the mid-1970s and helped her accept her own queerness before he died of AIDS 20 years later.
Naomi Osaka: Her Journey to Finding Her Power and Her Voice by Ben Rothenberg (Jan. 9, $30, ISBN 978-0-593-47243-9) dives into the tennis player’s life and career, using her 2018 U.S. Open victory over Serena Williams, when the crowd was rooting against Osaka, as an access point.
My Body Is Distant: A Memoir by Paige Maylott (Sept. 19, $18.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-77041-691-8) details how a cancer diagnosis, a crumbling marriage, virtual BDSM clubs, and other factors led the author to come out as trans and convert an online romance into an IRL one.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Cosmic Scholar: The Life and Times of Harry Smith by John Szwed (Aug. 22, $35, ISBN 978-0-374-28224-0) recounts the outrageous life story of Harry Smith: artist, occultist, and bad roommate to Allen Ginsberg.
Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again): A Memoir by Sly Stone, with Ben Greenman (Oct. 17, $30, ISBN 978-0-374-60697-8). Funk legend Stone teams up with novelist and music journalist Greenman to shed light on how he created some of the 1970s’ most classic songs.
Dear Sister: A Memoir of Secrets, Survival, and Unbreakable Bonds by Michelle Horton (Jan. 30, $30, ISBN 978-1-5387-5715-4) recounts how the author raised her sister’s children and launched a campaign to get her out of prison after she was convicted of killing her abuser.
Scattershot: Life, Music, Elton, and Me by Bernie Taupin (Sept. 12, $32.50, ISBN 978-0-306-82867-6). Elton John’s longtime lyricist opens up about their creative partnership, his English childhood, and his decampment to glittering Los Angeles in the mid 1970s.
Rental Person Who Does Nothing: A Memoir by Shoji Morimoto (Jan. 9, $30, ISBN 978-1-335-01753-6). In 2018, Morimoto posted on Twitter that he was available to “do nothing” for a small fee. He’s since been hired by thousands of people to do just that, and here shares some of his highlights on the job.
The Secret Life of John le Carré by Adam Sisman (Oct. 24, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-06-334104-3) follows up Sisman’s 2015 biography of John le Carré (who died in 2020) with an account of the infidelities the spy novelist wanted to keep quiet during his lifetime.
All of This: A Memoir of Death and Desire by Rebecca Woolf (Aug. 1, $18.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-320677-9). Two weeks after Woolf asked her husband for a divorce, he was diagnosed with late-stage pancreatic cancer. She chronicles their final months together and her life after he died.
Inverse Cowgirl by Alicia Weigel (Sept. 19, $18.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-329528-5) shares in humorous essays the author’s experiences fighting for political victories for fellow intersex people.
If You Would Have Told Me: A Memoir by John Stamos (Oct. 24, $29.99, ISBN 978-1-250-89097-9) recounts the former Full House star’s ups and downs in Hollywood.
Father and Son: A Memoir by Jonathan Raban (Sept. 19, $28, ISBN 978-0-375-42245-4). The author, who died earlier this year, draws parallels between his stroke in 2011 and his father’s time in WWII trenches, finding solace in the wartime letters his parents exchanged during that period of darkness.
A Life Impossible: Discovering Wisdom in a Fragile Existence by Steve Gleason and Jeff Duncan (Jan. 9, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-53681-0). Three years after leaving the NFL in 2008, 34-year-old Gleason was diagnosed with ALS. This memoir—written using eye-tracking software—unpacks that diagnosis and his career with the New Orleans Saints.
The Heartbreak Years by Minda Honey (Oct. 1, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-66250-002-2) reflects on the dissolution of Honey’s relationship after a cross-country move, and the subsequent trials of dating as a woman of color in Southern California.
Madonna: A Rebel Life by Mary Gabriel (Oct. 24, $38, ISBN 978-0-316-45647-0). The author of Ninth Street Women takes a deep dive into the Material Girl’s life and legacy.
Little, Brown Spark
Thicker Than Water: A Memoir by Kerry Washington (Sept. 26, $30, ISBN 978-0-316-49739-8) revisits the Scandal star’s upbringing, early career, artistic breakthroughs, and forays into political advocacy.
Notebooks of a Wandering Monk by Matthieu Ricard, trans. by Jesse Browner (Oct. 3, $39.95, ISBN 978-0-262-04829-3), depicts the Buddhist monk’s intellectually robust childhood and his spiritual evolution.
Free Spirit: From Barefoot in Brazil to the Catwalks of New York—a Memoir of a Fabulous Life by Tanya Sarne (Sept. 19, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-78472-846-5) dishes on the Ghost fashion label founder’s rise to prominence during London’s swinging ’60s.
The Race to Be Myself: A Memoir by Caster Semenya (Sept. 19, $30, ISBN 978-1-324-03577-0) recounts the 2010 controversy when the South African runner and Olympic gold medalist faced accusations that she was not a woman.
The Upcycled Self: The Story of Tariq Trotter, Who Would Become Black Thought, Co-founder of the Roots by Tariq Trotter (Nov. 14, $26.99, ISBN 978-0-593-44692-8). Roots rapper Trotter debuts with an illustrated memoir about his childhood in South Philly and rise to hip-hop stardom.
Every Man for Himself and God Against All: A Memoir by Werner Herzog, trans. by Michael Hofmann (Oct. 10, $30, ISBN 978-0-593-49029-7), reflects on the filmmaker’s history with cinema, beginning as a boy in rural Bavaria and continuing for more than seven decades (and counting).
Up Home: One Girl’s Journey by Ruth J. Simmons (Sept. 5, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-44600-3) traces the former Brown University president’s journey from the daughter of East Texas sharecroppers to the first Black leader of an Ivy League institution.
The Autists: Women on the Spectrum by Clara Törnvall, trans. by Alice E. Olsson (Nov. 7, $18 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-957363-53-0). Spurred by her own diagnosis, journalist Törnvall seeks out the stories of autistic women throughout history.
The Young Man by Annie Ernaux, trans. by Alison Strayer (Sept. 12, $13.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-64421-320-9), details the Nobel Prize winner’s affair with a much younger man when she was in her 50s.
Simon & Schuster
Down the Drain by Julia Fox (Oct. 10, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-66801-150-8). The Uncut Gems actor debuts with an account of her turbulent childhood, drug-strained relationships, stint as a dominatrix, and life as a single mother.
Leading Lady: A Memoir of a Most Unusual Boy by Charles Busch (Sept. 12, $27.95, ISBN 978-1-63774-414-7) spotlights the women—including Joan Rivers—who helped raise Busch after his mother’s death and traces his path to niche stardom as a drag performer and playwright.
The Loneliness Files
by Athena Dixon (Oct. 3, $17.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-959030-12-6) blends memoir and cultural critique in essays on the widespread loneliness of the digital age and Dixon’s escapes into true crime and YouTube.
An Inconvenient Cop: My Fight to Change Policing in America by Edwin Raymond, with Jon Sternfeld (Oct. 17, $29, ISBN 978-0-593-65316-6), probes the author’s double life as an NYPD lieutenant and the lead plaintiff in a civil rights lawsuit against his own department.
The summary of the book Everything I Learned, I Learned in a Chinese Restaurant has been updated for accuracy.