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Jun 9, 2008

new biographies, 6.9.08

Audition, a memoir, Barbara Walters
Barbara Walters's perception of the world was formed at a very early age. Her father, Lou Walters, was the owner and creative mind behind the legendary Latin Quarter nightclub, and it was his risk-taking lifestyle that gave Barbara her first taste of glamour. It also made her aware of the ups and downs, the insecurities, and even the tragedies that can occur when someone is willing to take great risks, for Lou Walters didn't just make several fortunes — he also lost them. Barbara learned early about the damage that such an existence can do to relationships — between husband and wife as well as between parent and child. Through her roller-coaster ride of a childhood, Barbara had a close companion, her mentally challenged sister, Jackie. True, Jackie taught her younger sister much about patience and compassion, but Barbara also writes honestly about the resentment she often felt having a sister who was so "different" and the guilt that still haunts her. All of this — the financial responsibility for her family, the fear, the love — played a large part in the choices she made as she grew up: the friendships she developed, the relationships she had, the marriages she tried to make work. Ultimately, thanks to her drive, combined with a decent amount of luck, she began a career in television. And what a career it has been! Against great odds, Barbara has made it to the top of a male-dominated industry. She was the first woman cohost of the Today show, the first female network news coanchor, the host and producer of countless top-rated Specials, the star of 20/20, and the creator and cohost of The View. She has not just interviewed the world's most fascinating figures, she has become a part of their world. These are just a few of the names that play a key role in Barbara's life, career, and book: Yasir Arafat, Warren Beatty, Menachem Begin, George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush, Jimmy Carter, Fidel Castro, Hugo Ch├ívez, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Roy Cohn, the Dalai Lama, Princess Diana, Katharine Hepburn, King Hussein, Angelina Jolie, Henry Kissinger, Monica Lewinsky, Richard Nixon, Rosie O'Donnell, Christopher Reeve, Anwar Sadat, John Wayne...the list goes on and on.

Tweak: growing up on methamphetamines, Nic Sheff
Nic Sheff was drunk for the first time at age eleven. In the years that followed, he would regularly smoke pot, do cocaine and Ecstasy, and develop addictions to crystal meth and heroin. Even so, he felt like he would always be able to quit and put his life together whenever he needed to. It took a violent relapse one summer in California to convince him otherwise. In a voice that is raw and honest, Nic spares no detail in telling us the compelling, heartbreaking, and true story of his relapse and the road to recovery. As we watch Nic plunge the mental and physical depths of drug addiction, he paints a picture for us of a person at odds with his past, with his family, with his substances, and with himself. It's a harrowing portrait — but not one without hope.

Up Till Now, William Shatner
After almost sixty years as an actor, William Shatner has become one of the most beloved entertainers in the world. And it seems as if Shatner is everywhere. Winning an Emmy for his role on Boston Legal. Doing commercials for Priceline.com. In the movie theaters. Singing with Ben Folds. He's sitting next to Jay Leno and Jimmy Kimmel, and he's practically a regular on Howard Stern's show. He was recently honored with election to the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame. He was a target on a Comedy Central Celebrity Roast entitled "The Shat Hits the Fan." In Up Till Now, Shatner sits down with readers and offers the remarkable, full story of his life and explains how he got to be, well, everywhere.

Home: a memoir of my early years, Julie Andrews
Many know Julie Andrews from "The Sound of Music" and "Mary Poppins." In this memoir, she looks back on her early years with an aspiring Vaudeville mom and a loving dad and her role in "Camelot" with Richard Burton at age 20.


for more information about these and other new biographies, search the library's catalog >


The Sum of Our Days, Isabel Allende
In this heartfelt memoir, Allende reconstructs the painful reality of her own life in the wake of tragic loss--the death of her daughter, Paula. Narrated with warmth, humor, and wisdom, this work is a portrait of a contemporary family, tied together by the love and loyalty of a determined matriarch.

for more information about these and other new biographies, search the library's catalog >

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