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Customer Discussions > Memoir forum

Most satisfying memoirs?

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Showing 51-75 of 154 posts in this discussion
Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 3:17:00 PM PDT
penarts says:
I believe you may add this inspirational memoir by Athena Demetrios to you lists of favorites.
The Seasoning of a Soul: When Comprehension Comes Through Trial and Experience

Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 3:29:59 PM PDT
J. Chambers says:
Last year, I posted a comment about Terry Gelormino Silver's remarkable memoir Nunzilla Was My Mother and My Stepmother Was a Witch, about growing up in three orphanages during the 1930s. To me, it read like "Oliver Twist" meets "Angela's Ashes." Ms. Silver has recently published "Nunzilla" for the Amazon Kindle for only $0.99.

She tells a great story. This was one of the most compelling memoirs I've read in quite a while.


Posted on Sep 6, 2010, 6:26:01 PM PDT
Abydell says:
Sample from Roger C. Elliott's What "Back Then" Was Like and stories passed on by ancestors: (by permission of the author)
Granddad was not to be disturbed because he was out there pulling the tooth. Well, Dad understood and decided to leave him alone. So, after about an hour, Dad called again to see if Granddad was feeling any better. Again, Mammaw answered the phone. This time she commented that he's still outside. Well, Dad told Mom we were going "over home." She and I got into the old pick up and the three of us started out. When we got there he seemed to be doing better. He was sitting on the front porch. This was where he often was when we arrived so we expected that he was better. As we walked down the steps from the street, he sat still. He was very pale and he was biting on a white cloth. He couldn't talk. He was still in pain. So, Mom asked him if he maybe should go on to the dentist, he shook his head and appeared angered. At that point everone seemed to chime in and insist that Granddad get to the doctor. What we didn't know at the time was that this "tough ole bird" had taken care of the situation himself by pulling not one but all of his teeth with a pair of pliers! Not believing in going to a medical doctor and never having been to a dentist (as far as I knew), he had developed an incredible pain tolerance.
With this kind of pain tolerance, I still cannot understand how this old mountain man who came from Eastern Kentucky, was ever squirmish about anything that life had to offer. However, there was one thing he just couldn't shake. See, according to Dad, Granddad was once an accomplished five-string banjo player, but I had never heard him play. I hadn't even seen a musical instrument "over home." Over the years I had heard numerous times that he was once a very good musician. But there was somehow an unwritten rule about never mentioning the banjo around "Poppie." With this on my mind one day, and because I felt I could ask Granddad anything, I figured on asking him about the days when he played. I just wanted to hear him play, after all I really didn't know what a banjo sounded like first hand. So, while Granddad was sitting in his chair near the front door I proceded to inquire about it.
"Granddad, can you still play the banjo?"
"What? How do you know?"
"I just heard you were good."
"Yeh, I use to."
"Do you ever play anymore?"
"New, I don't. Haven't played since I was back in Sandy Hook."
"Could you play if you really wanted too-if you got your fingers back in shape?"
"Don't know, but will never know. I won't play that thing anymore. Something happened. I can't play again."
I knew by the tone of his voice that he didn't want to be questioned about it any more. So, I waited until I could ask Dad about why Granddad didn't play music anymore. Although he looked at me closely before he rendered an answer, he finally told me that Granddad told him that back in Kentucky, Granddad was sitting playing his banjo when something happened. He said that is why he wouldn't play any longer.
"Yeh, that's what Granddad said. But, what happened?" I asked.
"Well he said he was just sittin' there playin' like he always did...In his chair, but he was playin' his banjo a fast one. And right in the middle of the playin' he heard something right above his head. It was somethin' in the attic. It sounded like it was dancin' along with the music. Well, he said it scared him so much that he put it down and never picked it up again."
"What was it?" I asked again.
"Don't know. All I know is that he never played again and told me after that happen'd he felt it was wrong to play-like it was sacreligous. --He had it in his mind that the devil or somthin' was in the attic when he was playin' and figured that if that was happenin', it must be wrong to play."
This was, remember, the same man who was tough enough to kill snakes with his bare hands and yank out every tooth in his mouth with a pair of pliers! But sure enough, something happened that day in Kentucky that scared him to the point he'd never pick up his banjo again.
(permission granted by the author, What "Back Then" Was Like: and stories passed on by ancestors Roger C. Elliott) What "Back Then" Was Like: and stories passed on by ancestors

Posted on Sep 7, 2010, 6:52:44 AM PDT
annie says:
A Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls
Running with Scissors by Augustyn Burroughs
A Lucky Child by

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 8, 2010, 9:56:34 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 8, 2010, 12:08:35 PM PDT
Aviva Lynne says:
Just finished this weekend "Losing Mom and Pup' by Christopher Buckley about the year both his Mom and Dad (William F Buckley) died. I found I really related to it. He was more candid than I expected and so it came off as being very real. You gleaned some insights into the family dynamics. While a difficult subject, parental illness and death, Christopher's satirical wit was always in evidence. Having always admired William F (although not politics) I was glad that despite getting a close up look at some of his flaws I did not come away admiring his achievements less.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 8, 2010, 10:01:02 AM PDT
Loving Life says:
The Slave to Secrecy by Scott Ruesterholz is a really thought provoking memoir

Posted on Sep 9, 2010, 11:37:39 AM PDT
Erin Bateman says:
Hello and thanks for your discussion! Memiors have always been my favorite type of book. A majority of the books I read are memiors. It's only fitting that I write my own. I never thought I'd become a writer. Life never seemed to take me in that direction or I never knew that's where I wanted to go; until I lost my baby to a miscarriage. It's funny how life takes turns you'd never expect. I wrote my memior out of pure grief and to help heal my aching heart. This is the story that arose. I hope you enjoy it and can share your story with me.
Thank you to all who support the plethora of mom's and dad's out there! Guilt-Ridden Mommy A Story of Loss, Love, and Forgiveness

Posted on Sep 16, 2010, 6:51:08 AM PDT
tina Traster says:
Vivian Gornick's Fierce Attachments and a fictionalized memoir by Lynn Lauber called "White Girls

I have just published Burb Appeal: The Collection on Amazon.
The ebook is a humorous collection of my newspaper columns about leaving Manhattan and moving to a rural suburb. In these, readers meet nutty neighbors, bumbling town officials, a plethora of domestic and wild animals and of course my family.

Burb Appeal: A Collection of Humorous Essays

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 16, 2010, 7:08:04 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 16, 2010, 7:08:35 AM PDT
K. Vogl says:
I saw Lynn Lauber speak at a conference I spoke at, too, last spring. She's great. (Her daughter was with her, too.)
Kate Vogl
Lost and Found: A Memoir of Mothers

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 17, 2010, 8:01:22 AM PDT
Bob Smith's Shakespeare's Dresser was gripping and VERY interesting...the influence
of Shakespeare on a boy!

Posted on Sep 17, 2010, 10:43:31 AM PDT
J. Chambers says:
One of the finest and most compelling memoirs that I've read in years is Terry Gelormino Silver's Nunzilla Was My Mother and My Stepmother Was a Witch. It's the fascinating story of Ms. Silver's childhood years in three different Ohio orphanages during the Great Depression of the 1930s. One reviewer say it reminded him of "Oliver Twist." I agree, and maybe a bit of "Angela's Ashes" too..

It's only $0.99 at Amazon.

Posted on Sep 19, 2010, 4:03:20 PM PDT
paintjug says:
Eileen Stoecklin. I love reading Memoirs also. Stolen lives (excellent),Angela's ashes (got a bit depressed while reading it, but I did like the book), I know why changed birds sing (heartwarming), what falls away by Mia Farrow, and of course
"A Pinhole of Light"
My Memoir, it's a fictional story intertwined in my true life story it is about my own struggles to overcome depression, marriage struggles, being able to forgive a friend of 33 years that betrayed me, and much much more. I have been given great reviews, and have touched many a heart. Find it here on amazon in paperback and kindle. A Pinhole of Light

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 19, 2010, 4:18:57 PM PDT
paintjug says:
Hi Erin
I too love memoirs, 99% Of what I read are memoirs. Sorry to hear of your loss, I to had a miscarriage at a very young age, but was graced eight years later by a son, whom I adore. I was only able to get pregnant just those two times, but Joel is the "better to me, than ten sons"
I to wrote a memoir, that I would like to share with you. It is not about any one tragedy in life but my struggles to overcome depression, finding the true meaning of happiness, facing dire poverty and the light I found in the mists of it, marriage struggles,being able to forgive a friend of 33 years that betrayed me and much more. It has touched many a heart and have given others a higher outlook on life. Get it on Kindle for only 3.00
Happy to have a discussion that is intelligent, I do not find that on Amazon and am glad to have landed here.
Happy day, and thoughts, to you
warmly Eileen

Posted on Sep 21, 2010, 6:49:29 PM PDT
Abydell says:
"'Picture yourself sitting on your porch, with a friend you've not visited with in a long while, and that friend turns to you and says 'I ever tell you about....'? That's this book. A conversation with an old friend. Each chapter is like that comfortable pair of jeans that you look forward to slipping into. From Elliott County, Kentucky, to Abydell, Mitchell, Dubois, and all points in-between, the reader is swept up in a journey of discovery and RE-discovery that makes you stop to appreciate what you have NOW, all because of what "back THEN" was like. What a wonderful gift the author has given to his family, and to all of US! '"

Posted on Oct 14, 2010, 6:20:31 PM PDT
Sam says:
Take a look at COURAGE TO WALK by Robert Waxler

Posted on Oct 29, 2010, 10:13:41 PM PDT
Here is a new memoir - this years Glass Castle:

Bluff Island Rescue Service - a memoir by Stephanie Hubbard
Bluff Island Rescue Service: a memoir

Here is a thoughtful review:

I Dare You To Put It Down!
Uplifting, chilling, funny and humane, Stephanie Hubbard's memoir is a bold, beautiful page turner. Spare, filmic chapters reveal a childhood dominated by a charismatic and narcissistic father whose single-minded self-absorption makes him a danger to his family and an unforgettably compelling character for the reader. Compelling too is young Stephanie's attempts to survive her childhood, win her father's love, mend her broken family and, when grown, to numb her pain with copious amounts of alcohol. Filled with well-observed, searing moments, Bluff Island Rescue Service comes from a place of hard won emotional truth. Better than any book I have ever read, it shows what dysfunction does to a child, how it plants the seed of future dysfunction and how it can be triumphantly overcome. Do not miss this book!

Posted on Nov 1, 2010, 11:01:40 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Dec 30, 2010, 7:31:05 AM PST]

Posted on Nov 1, 2010, 4:46:54 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Dec 7, 2010, 7:27:52 AM PST]

Posted on Nov 4, 2010, 8:38:07 AM PDT
shaun says:
I think you'll find this memoir highly entertaining!! I recently published my first book titled Honeymoon Junkie. It's a retrospective look back on my dating past while masquerading as a Wall Street executive from 9 to 5 in Manhattan. Come follow me on my improbable and foolish quest for the perfect woman in the wake of a crushing divorce. It is erotic, scandalous, heartbreaking and humorous all at once. I've already fielded some "nibbles" from Hollywood producers as my story would be easily adaptable to the big screen. If you liked Sex in the City, come read about what a real life Mr. Big was doing when he wasn't waffling about his relationship with Carrie Bradshaw!!

Posted on Nov 6, 2010, 12:40:38 PM PDT
Billy Ng says:
Reviews for Witnessing To Dracula : A Memoir of Ministry In Romania by Billy Ng
Published late September 2010.
Amazon.com Reviews:
5.0 out of 5 stars The Funniest Christian book I have ever read!, October 21, 2010
By Emanuel K. Melton - See all my reviews

This review is from: Witnessing to Dracula (Paperback)
Billy recently visited our church in central NY and before he began he mentioned his book and how good it was. I wasn't planning on buying a copy until he said he would sow a percentage into a another ministry. I figured I would get the book if for nothing else to help Billy and the ministry he would sow into. I started reading it immediately and I couldn't believe how funny it was! Most Christian books are very reserved and they may have a laugh or two in them, but this was book was a riot! It showed the ups and downs of a stranger in a strange land doing God's work. He went through so much before he even got his church started that if it were me I would have given up. His trust in God and the love he had for the people were astonishing. I would definitely recommend this book to any one whether they be Christian or not. I wish more books had this sense of fun on a matter that's so serious!

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, October 5, 2010
By Diane Roberts - See all my reviews

This review is from: Witnessing to Dracula (Paperback)
This book tells you "what no one tells you about being a missionary". The issues of politics, finances, culture, religion,health care and history of Romania are all addressed in this book. If you had text books on these subjects they would be boring but Billy Ng makes this such an easy, enjoyable read, you fly through the book. Definitely worth buying .

5.0 out of 5 stars Culture Shock, September 29, 2010
By Bill Banuchi - See all my reviews

This review is from: Witnessing to Dracula (Paperback)
Culture shock is the phrase that comes to mind in trying to summarize my impressions reading this book. Billy Ng, by all natural measures, the least likely candidate to be chosen to minister to Romanians, demonstrates what one man can do who is totally committed to the cause of Christ in a nation devastated by Communism. This should be required reading for students of global studies, and especially for anyone considering a calling to the mission field. Hurry up, Billy, with Part 2!

5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!, September 14, 2010
By Jon Forster - See all my reviews

This review is from: Witnessing to Dracula (Paperback)
This book is amazing! It is an incredible look into a true life story of a man who gave up many of his personal comforts and luxury's to fulfill a higher calling. This book inspires to live beyond yourself and to remain faithful to all that God has called you to accomplish no matter how rocky the road may be. This book should be made into a movie! Reading this book will change your life as you journey with the author through the historic land of Romania. Encountering many obstacles, challenges, prejudices and even the true history of Count Dracula! "Witnessing To Dracula" is an extremely enjoyable and entertaining book. Well written and action packed I highly recommend it!

Reviews at Witnessingtodracula facebook page:
Roxanne Stoneburg What an aweseome story. Go Billy, go! Keep showing God's love!
John Joseph Bolos I was very inspired and challenged by Billys book. Its a must read for anyone wanting to know what it takes to go out in the field. Also it is so interesting no matter your views and theology that you cant put it down. I am serious I hate reading sorry to say but this book is one that cant be put down. Looking forward to part two Billy.
Joann Jansen What a fabulous book! I started it and finished it in a 24 hour period of time!! Just couldn't put it down! Some of the stories are just crazy! I'm glad you finally put them all on paper. Can't wait to read more! Love you guys! Joann :) xoxo
Chris Golden This book will absolutely make you analyze your own walk with God. How would you react to each situation Billy finds himself in? What was my initial response after finishing the book? "Lord, what am I doing? What can I do? What should I be doing? What is your will for me?" It's so easy to be lazy and spoiled when livin...g in more developed societies. There's less of a feeling of a need for God's presence, let alone a continual walk in His will. After reading Witnessing to Dracula, one can't help but feel at least a little bit ashamed for whining to God. This book will push you to get out of your own way, stop complaining, and get on with what God has called you to do. A true inspiration, I highly recommend this book to anyone. Bring on book 2!!!
Sarah Stanziola Golden i completely agree!!! the book was absolutely amazing and i couldn't put it down!!! billy i don't know how you did it haha i think i would have left after like the third chapter haha you are a great man of God and an inspiration to me!!! i find myself questioning what can i do to help others and what does God want from me. its crazy how spoiled America is and how much we have to be thankful for. i cant wait till u write book 2 and thank you for sharing your stories with us!!! love u and cant wait to see u again!!!

Patty Fischer Gessner Received my book on Sunday, started it on Monday, finished it today (Tuesday). Laura, you told me I wouldn't be disappointed, and you were so right !! Now, I can't wait till book II comes out !! Congratulations, Billy, a best seller for sure !!

Harriet Martha Sherman-Wyatt Harriet Wyatt...a MUST READ BOOK. As I laid this book on my desk (having already begin aother book) I thought "Oh well, just the first chapter - than I'll finish it when I've done with the present book. 24 hours later I had finished reading "Witnessing to Dracula". Every chapter leaves a desire to read on - you will... laugh in one chapter while another chapter leaves you with a tear in your eyes. Job well done, Billy. Can't wait for the sequel.

Allison Sadrianna This is a fantastic book! If I didn't know the author the stories would be unbelievable! CHECK IT OUT! - This book will shake you up and test your faith. :D AWESOME book!

Witnessing to Dracula

Posted on Nov 13, 2010, 12:53:59 PM PST
Shogo Onoe says:
Thanks for giving me the opportunities to introduce my book.
I wrote Liberation, which is an autobiographical writing. Liberation is the confession of the man who just wants to express himself in earnest, and who simply wants to tell the truth from the depth of his heart. It is a story of the process of a man liberating himself from the place where he does not want to belong so that he can start living his own life in his own sweet way. This book is for my fellow seekers who believe in life and individualism unconditionally and feel that life gives us full of surprises when one follows his destiny relentlessly.

My website: http://www.shogoliberation.com/

Posted on Nov 28, 2010, 7:18:14 AM PST
This is a description of my memoir, Survivor: One Man's Battle with HIV, Hemophilia, and Hepatitis C

On January 3, 1987, teenager Vaughn Ripley receives what seems to be a death sentence. A lifelong hemophiliac, he has been infused with tainted blood and is found to be HIV+. In this memoir, Ripley not only recounts his life living with severe physical ailments, but also details his fight to live. Survivor follows him as he receives his fateful news and examines how this single piece of information pushes the innocent boy headlong into a hard life of drugs and alcohol. After several years and many near-death incidents, he finally overcomes the drug addiction and tries to create some semblance of life out of the resulting carnage. He describes how he turned his life around to become a professional database administrator, how hemophilia contributed to his tendency toward being an adrenaline junkie, and how medical advances allowed Ripley and his wife to become parents. His story is one of courage and tenacity, as he demonstrates the will to face the world head-on and overcome the physical ailments in order to lead an active, productive, and positive life.

Thanks, and please let me know what you think of my book!


Posted on Jan 4, 2011, 12:56:41 AM PST
S. Stathatos says:
I would like to offer you a recommendation of a book with a powerful message that should be heard. The story is about child abuse and overcoming the obstacles that occur early in life, and how it shapes us as adults. Especially with all the suffering you have gone through yourself, I think this story will touch you. In 1978, seven-year-old George Molho was kidnapped by his own father. For a year, he survived mental and physical abuse to the point of torture. He found it easier to get used to hell, instead of hoping that heaven was around the corner. George eventually escaped, but surviving the aftermath proved to be much more difficult. Past and present are skillfully woven together to connect the pieces of Molho's childhood and adult life that shaped the man he would become. The old adage 'love conquers all' is splayed open to reveal the inner workings that we all seek to understand. George was lucky to learn how to love from his family before his abduction, before his father's cruel version of love was inflicted upon his young body and psyche. Later in life, love compels him to reveal all that happened on the mountainside where he left his innocence as a boy.

It's not about how hard we get hit; it's about how much we can take and keep moving forward. Scarred is a memoir written by a survivor, intended to empower and embolden all who have suffered, survived, and are ready to be set free.

Posted on Jan 24, 2011, 12:48:34 PM PST
We've written a romantic memoir that people seem to like, so we would like to share it with you. It's It Had to Be Us. Our story is about how we got back together after being estranged and divorced for almost two decades. Each of us relates our version of key dates and events. We now believe romantic miracles can happen, even after age 60! We hope you enjoy It Had to Be Us

Posted on Feb 10, 2011, 6:41:20 PM PST
Abydell says:
favorites include:
#1 What Back Then Was Like (and stories passed on by ancestors) by Roger Elliott
others: 1. Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
2. 'Tis by Frank McCourt
3. This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff
4. Rocket Boys by Homer Hickam
5. Growing up in Mississippi by Anne Moody
6. Adrift by Stephen Callahan
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