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Biographies and autobiographies

  • Author:
    McFarlane, Bonnie
    Summary:

    It took Bonnie McFarlane a lot of time, effort, and tequila to get to where she is today. In this memoir, Bonnie tells it like it is and lays bare all of her smart (and her not-so-smart) decisions along her way to finding her comedic voice.

  • Author:
    Fang, Fang
    Summary:

    On January 25, 2020, after the central government imposed a lockdown in Wuhan, acclaimed Chinese writer Fang Fang began publishing an online diary. In the days and weeks that followed, Fang Fang's nightly postings gave voice to the fears, frustrations, anger, and hope of millions of her fellow citizens, reflecting on the psychological impact of forced isolation, the role of the internet as both community lifeline and source of misinformation, and most tragically, the lives of neighbors and friends taken by the deadly virus.

  • Author:
    Irby, Samantha
    Summary:

    A new rip-roaring essay collection from the smart, edgy, hilarious, unabashedly raunchy, and bestselling Samantha Irby. Irby is forty, and increasingly uncomfortable in her own skin despite what Inspirational Instagram Infographics have promised her. She has left her job as a receptionist at a veterinary clinic, has published successful books and has been friendzoned by Hollywood, left Chicago, and moved into a house with a garden that requires repairs and know-how with her wife in a Blue town in the middle of a Red state where she now hosts book clubs and makes mason jar salads. This is the bourgeois life of a Hallmark Channel dream. She goes on bad dates with new friends, spends weeks in Los Angeles taking meetings with "tv executives slash amateur astrologers" while being a "cheese fry-eating slightly damp Midwest person," "with neck pain and no cartilage in [her] knees," who still hides past due bills under her pillow. The essays in this collection draw on the raw, hilarious particulars of Irby's new life. Wow, No Thank You is Irby at her most unflinching, riotous, and relatable.

  • Author:
    Streetly, Joanna
    Summary:

    Wild Fierce Life is a heart-stopping collection of true stories from the Pacific Coast that build a vivid portrait of life on the continental edge and one woman’s evolving place within it.

    Author Joanna Streetly arrived on the west coast of Vancouver Island when she was nineteen, and soon adapted to the challenges of working on boats of all sorts, guiding multi-day wilderness kayak trips along the BC coast, and living in remote situations often without electricity or running water.

    From a near-death experience while swimming at night to an enigmatic encounter with a cougar, these stories capture the joys and dangers of living in a wild environment. Streetly’s vivid storytelling evokes a sincere respect for nature, both its fragility and its power.

    Full of unflinching self-examination and a fidelity to the landscape of Vancouver Island’s outer coast, these stories reveal the interplay between inner and outer landscapes—the evolution of a woman uncovering the pleasures and dangers of the wild life.

  • Author:
    Various
    Summary:

    What's better than one Who Was ? book ? Six Who Was ? books! Who Is Bob Dylan? By Jim O'Connor; read by MacLeod Andrews. Listen to find out more about a boy named Bobby Zimmerman from Hibbing, Minnesota; a folksinger in Greenwich Village in the 1960s; and a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Who Was Frida Kahlo? By Sarah Fabiny; read by Marisol Ramirez. Listen to find out more about a young girl who dreamed of becoming a doctor, a woman who loved the beauty of her native Mexico, and one of the most famous female artists of all time. Who Was Claude Monet? By Ann Waldron; read by Arthur Morey. Listen to find out more about a boy who drew funny pictures of his neighbors, a young soldier in Africa, and a world-famous painter. Who Was Pablo Picasso? By True Kelley; read by Fred Sanders. Listen to find out more about a child who could draw before he could talk; a pet-lover who had a mouse, a turtle, a monkey, and many cats and dogs; and the most famous artist of the 20th century. Who Was Maria Tallchief? By Catherine Gourley; read by Hillary Huber. Listen to find out more about a ballet dancer who began her career by dancing at county fairs and rodeos, a Native American girl who fell in love with dance while attending her first powwow, and the United States' first prima ballerina. Who Was Andy Warhol? By Kirsten Anderson; read by Kaleo Griffith. Listen to find out more about a sickly boy named Andrew Warhola from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; a talented printmaker whose art sometimes resembled advertising; and the founder of the Pop Art movement. From the Compact Disc edition.

  • Author:
    Lisa, Rogak
    Summary:

    After a contestant wrote "We love you, Alex!" as his Final Jeopardy! answer, fans around the world quickly chimed in to proclaim their own love and support for beloved Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek. In the wake of his devastating cancer diagnosis, the moment provided the perfect opportunity to reflect on what the show — and the man – meant to them. It was no surprise, since millions of devoted viewers have long considered Alex Trebek to be a part of their daily lives ever since he began hosting the show in 1984. Now, bestselling biographer Lisa Rogak gives readers a look at Trebek's early life, his career, and his personal life throughout the years, drawing on many sources to tell his full story for the first time. There are many surprises, like the fact that Trebek was almost 50 when he discovered that he had a half brother, as well as the revelation that for a short time he actually dreamed of becoming a priest. The native Canadian also struggled with depression after the failure of his first marriage, and for years afterward he despaired of ever having a family of his own until he met the woman who would become his soulmate. Who Is Alex Trebek? is the first biography of the much-loved game show host, and as such, celebrates the man who has created a remarkable legacy that will live on in popular culture for generations to come. A Macmillan Audio production from Thomas Dunne Books

  • Author:
    Khan-Cullors, Patrisse
    Summary:

    This program includes a foreword read by Angela Davis Patrisse Khan-Cullors' and asha bandele's instant New York Times bestseller, When They Call You a Terrorist is now adapted for the YA audience! A movement that started with a hashtag—#BlackLivesMatter—on Twitter spread across the nation and then across the world. From one of the co-founders of the Black Lives Matter movement comes a poetic memoir and reflection on humanity. Necessary and timely, Patrisse Khan-Cullors' story asks us to remember that protest in the interest of the most vulnerable comes from love. Leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement have been called terrorists, a threat to America. But in truth, they are loving women whose life experiences have led them to seek justice for those victimized by the powerful. In this meaningful, empowering account of survival, strength, and resilience, Cullors and asha bandele seek to change the culture that declares innocent black life expendable. A Macmillan Audio production from Wednesday Books

  • Author:
    Wilson, Amy, Deedrick-Mayne, Laurel
    Summary:

    When Amy Wilson accepted the job of field nurse for the Indigenous Peoples in the Yukon and Northern British Columbia in 1949, she was told that the north was a fine country for men and dogs but that it killed women and horses. Undaunted, Wilson travelled the Alaska Highway from Whitehorse (Mile 916) to Mile Zero. She served Indigenous Peoples in tents, shacks and on the trapline, travelling by dog team, car, plane, snowshoe, horseback and boat. She was the first to respond when a half-frozen man came stumbling into a ham radio operator’s shack with a story of epidemic and starvation at Halfway River. With five doses of antitoxin pinned inside her sweater to keep them warm, she made her way through forty-below temperatures to the camp where Indigenous Peoples were still living in summer tents. Four people had died of the “choking sickness” before Wilson’s arrival, but she brought immediate help, and shortly thereafter supplies began to arrive by sleigh and by air. The details of the diphtheria epidemic are both tragic and dramatic and just one of many such incidents in the busy life of the “Indian Nurse,” as she was called.

    Wilson’s territory spanned 518,000 square kilometres. She was responsible for the health of 3,000 Indigenous Peoples, but Wilson was more than just a health care provider: over time, she became an advocate, partner and friend for the community with whom she shared mutual respect, music, medicine, tea from tobacco tins and, most of all, with whom she shared her heart.

    Originally published as No Man Stands Alone in 1965 by Gray’s Publishing LTD., this new edition, When Days Are Long: Nurse in the North, includes an introduction by Wilson’s grandniece, Laurel Deedrick-Mayne, which brings crucial insights to this important figure in BC’s history.

    A percentage of proceeds from When Days Are Long will be donated to the Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association’s Jean Goodwill Scholarship.

  • Author:
    Lang, Maya Shanbhag
    Summary:

    “A gorgeous memoir about mothers, daughters, and the tenacity of the love that grows between what is said and what is left unspoken.”—Mira Jacob, author of  Good Talk If our family stories shape us, what happens when we learn those stories were never true? Who do we become when we shed our illusions about the past?   Maya Shanbhag Lang grew up idolizing her brilliant mother, an accomplished physician who immigrated to the United States from India and completed her residency all while raising her children and keeping a traditional Indian home. Maya’s mother had always been a source of support—until Maya became a mother herself. Then the parent who had once been so capable and attentive became suddenly and inexplicably unavailable. Struggling to understand this abrupt change while raising her own young child, Maya searches for answers and soon learns that her mother is living with Alzheimer’s. Unable to remember or keep track of the stories she once told her daughter—stories about her life in India, why she immigrated, and her experience of motherhood—Maya’s mother divulges secrets about her past that force Maya to reexamine their relationship. It becomes clear that Maya never really knew her mother, despite their close bond. Absorbing, moving, and raw, What We Carry is a memoir about mothers and daughters, lies and truths, receiving and giving care, and how we cannot grow up until we fully understand the people who raised us. It is a beautiful examination of the weight we shoulder as women and an exploration of how to finally set our burdens down. Praise for What We Carry "Part self-discovery, part family history... [Lang's] analysis of the shifting roles of mothers and daughters, particularly through the lens of immigration, help[s] to challenge her family’s mythology... . Readers interested in examining their own family stories ... will connect deeply with Lang’s beautiful memoir." — Library Journal  (Starred Review)   “A stirring memoir exploring the fraught relationships between mothers and daughters ... astutely written and intense ... [ What We Carry ] will strike a chord with readers.” —Publishers Weekly “Lang is an immediately affable and honest narrator who offers an intriguing blend of revelatory personal history and touching insight.” —BookPage

  • Author:
    Meneghetti, Monica
    Summary:

    This mouthwatering, intimate, and sensual memoir traces Monica Meneghetti’s unique life journey through her relationship with food, family and love. As the youngest child of a traditional Italian-Catholic immigrant family, Monica learns the intimacy of the dinner table and the ritual of meals, along with the requirements of conformity both at the table and in life. Monica is thirteen when her mother is diagnosed with breast cancer and undergoes a mastectomy. When her mother dies three years later, Monica considers the existence of her own breasts and her emerging sexuality in the context of grief and the disintegration of her sense of family.

    As Monica becomes an adult, she discovers a part of her self that rebels against the rigours of her traditional upbringing. And as the layers of her sexuality are revealed she begins to understand that like herbs infusing a sauce with flavour, her differences add a delicious complexity to her life.

    But in coming to terms with her place in the margins of the margins, Monica must also face the challenge of coming out while living in a small town, years before same-sex marriage and amendments to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms created safer spaces for queers. Through risk, courage, and heartbreak, she ultimately redefines and recreates family and identity according to her own alternative vision.

  • Author:
    Fonda, Jane
    Summary:

    A call to action from Jane Fonda, one of the most inspiring activists of our time, urging us to wake up to the looming disaster of climate change and equipping us with the tools we need to join her in protest "This is the last possible moment in history when changing course can mean saving lives and species on an unimaginable scale. It's too late for moderation." In the fall of 2019, frustrated with the obvious inaction of politicians and inspired by Greta Thunberg, Naomi Klein, and student climate strikers, Jane Fonda moved to Washington, D.C., to lead weekly climate change demonstrations on Capitol Hill. On October 11, she launched Fire Drill Fridays, and has since led thousands of people in nonviolent civil disobedience, risking arrest to protest for action. In What Can I Do? , Fonda weaves her deeply personal journey as an activist alongside conversations with and speeches by leading climate scientists and inspiring community organizers, and dives deep into the issues, such as water, migration, and human rights, to emphasize what is at stake. Most significantly, Fonda equips us all with the tools we need to join her in protest, so that everyone can work to combat the climate crisis. No stranger to protest, Fonda's life has been famously shaped by activism. And now she is once again galvanizing the public to take to the streets. Many are already aware of the looming disaster of climate change and realize that a moral responsibility rests on our shoulders. In 2019, we saw atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases hit the highest level ever recorded in human history, and our window of opportunity to act is quickly closing. We are facing a climate crisis, but we're also facing an empathy crisis and an inequality crisis; the surge of protests over police violence against black Americans has once again highlighted the links between racism and environmental degradation in our country. It isn't only earth's life-support systems that are unraveling. So too is our social fabric. This is going to take an all-out war on drilling and fracking and deregulation and racism and misogyny and colonialism and despair all at the same time. As Annie Leonard, executive director of Greenpeace USA and Fonda's partner in developing Fire Drill Fridays, has declared, "Change is inevitable; by design, or by disaster." Together, we can commandeer change for the positive—but it will require collective actions taken by social movements on an unprecedented scale. The problems we face now require every one of us to join the fight. The fight for not only our immediate future, but for the future of generations to come. *This audiobook program includes a PDF of photographs and graphs. 100% of the author's net proceeds from What Can I Do ? will go to Greenpeace

  • Author:
    Le Bel, Pauline
    Summary:

    An exhilarating mix of natural history and personal exploration Whale in the Door is a passionate account of a woman’s transformative experience of her adopted home.

    For thousands of years, Howe Sound, an inlet in the Salish Sea provided abundant food, shelter, and stories, for the Squamish Nation. After a century of contamination from pulp mills, a chemical factory, and a copper mine, the Sound, a noisy, stinky, polluted place, contained many biologically dead zones. Marine life was severely diminished. But major efforts by the Squamish Nation, governments, and industry has produced dramatic returns of herring, dolphins, porpoises, orcas, and humpbacks.

    Today, Howe Sound, a spectacular fjord in Vancouver’s backyard, is a popular recreation and tourism destination. The recovery, however, is fragile. The Sound is being inundated with proposals for re-industrialization-a controversial liquid natural gas plant, pipelines, super tankers, a gravel mine on a salmon-bearing estuary, and major residential and commercial developments.

    Pauline Le Bel, a resident of Howe Sound, embarks on a journey of discovery to find out what is special about the Sound, its wild nature and its people, to witness the cultural and spiritual revivals taking place. Her research, her interviews, her travels on the land, the water, the skies of Howe Sound, compel her to abandon antiquated ideas about wilderness and community, and to arrive at a new appreciation for the genius of her home.

    Whale in the Door invites readers into a story of biological resilience as a community struggles to shape a vision for its future.

  • Author:
    Braverman, Blair
    Summary:

    By the time Blair Braverman was eighteen, she had left her home in California, moved to arctic Norway to learn to drive sled dogs, and found work as a tour guide on a glacier in Alaska. Determined to carve out a life as a "tough girl"--a young woman who confronts danger without apology--she slowly developed the strength and resilience the landscape demanded of her.

  • Author:
    Elliott, Steven
    Summary:

    Steven Elliott presents an explosive look at the chaos of war; the battle for life in its aftermath; a personal encounter with faith, love, tragedy, and renewal; and a confrontation of life's biggest questions.

  • Author:
    Gabriel, Byrne
    Summary:

    A highly anticipated memoir by Gabriel Byrne, the award-winning star of over eighty films, Walking with Ghosts is an exquisite portrait of an Irish childhood and a remarkable journey to Hollywood and Broadway success As a young boy growing up on the outskirts of Dublin, Gabriel Byrne sought refuge in a world of imagination among the fields and hills near his home, at the edge of a rapidly encroaching city. Born to working-class parents and the eldest of six children, he harbored a childhood desire to become a priest. When he was eleven years old, Byrne found himself crossing the Irish Sea to join a seminary in England. Four years later, Byrne had been expelled and he quickly returned to his native city. There he took odd jobs as a messenger boy and a factory laborer to get by. In his spare time, he visited the cinema where he could be alone and yet part of a crowd. It was here that he could begin to imagine a life beyond the grey world of sixties Ireland. He reveled in the theater and poetry of Dublin's streets, populated by characters as eccentric and remarkable as any in fiction, those who spin a yarn with acuity and wit. It was a friend who suggested Byrne join an amateur drama group, a decision that would change his life forever and launch him on an extraordinary forty-year career in film and theater. Moving between sensual recollections of childhood in a now almost vanished Ireland and reflections on stardom in Hollywood and on Broadway, Byrne also courageously recounts his battle with addiction and the ambivalence of fame. Walking with Ghosts is by turns hilarious and heartbreaking as well as a lyrical homage to the people and landscapes that ultimately shape our destinies.

  • Author:
    Vachon, Gilbert
    Summary:

    Ce livre raconte l'histoire d'une mère bienveillante qui, une fois placée en CHSLD, est décédée à la suite de négligence dont elle a été victime, mais aussi d'un fils aimant qui, en plus de l'avoir soutenu jusqu'à la fin, a décidé, par tous les moyens, de rassembler les morceaux du casse-tête afin de comprendre la situation, mais également de rendre justice à sa mère morte dans des circonstances inhabituelles. Ce roman, parfois dénonciateur, parfois inspirant, est basé sur un fait vécu écrit avec le cœur, mais également en toute authenticité et simplicité. Découvrir l'envers de la médaille et tout ce qu'implique certains choix pris dans le passé en CHSLD sur la qualité de vie de nos aînés ne laissera personne indifférent. Ce livre s'adresse à tous ceux et celles qui sont sensibles à la réalité de ceux et celles qui ont construit le Québec, mais surtout aux proches aidants, au personnel du domaine de la santé et aux personnes œuvrant de près ou de loin auprès de cette clientèle, y compris la fonction publique. Tout le monde le sait que l'usure et les rides de leur visage et de leurs mains sont comme une carte géographique qui nous montre les chemins qu'ils ont parcourus au fil du temps. Ensemble, servons-nous de cette histoire pour apprendre de nos erreurs du passé, mais surtout bâtir un avenir meilleur pour que nos sages puissent vivre dans la dignité jusqu'à leur dernier souffle. Un pas à la fois, si la famille, le personnel et le gouvernement travaillent de concert nous pouvons y arriver.

  • Author:
    Sarkadi, Laurie
    Summary:

    After plans to live in Africa shatter, young journalist Laurie Sarkadi moves to the Subarctic city of Yellowknife seeking wilderness and adventure. She covers the changing socio-political worlds of Dene and Inuit in the late ‘80s—catching glimpses of their traditional, animal-dependent ways—before settling into her own off-grid existence in the boreal forest. There, she experiences motherhood and its remarkable synchronicities with the lives of caribou, dragonflies and other creatures.

    As a mother, and as a journalist, Sarkadi speaks up for abused women and children, creating controversies that entangle her in long, legal battles. When she looks to animals and the natural world for solace, she encounters magic. Lessons from the natural world arrive weekly, if not daily: black bears roam her dreams, as well as her deck, teaching introspection; wolves inspire her to persevere.

    This evocative memoir explores a more than two-decade long physical and spiritual journey into the wild spaces of northern Canada, around the globe and deep within.

  • Author:
    Bastien, Judith
    Summary:

    Ce livre raconte mon histoire, celle d'une fille atteinte d'Ostéogénèse Imparfaite. On dit que j'ai écrit une histoire de détermination et de persévérance empreinte d'humour et de dignité. Si me raconter aide une seule personne à avancer dans la vie, alors ce travail n'aura pas été en vain. « Nous, les gens dits sans handicap, devrions tous faire la lecture de ce genre de témoignage, ne serait-ce que pour vraiment réaliser que les gestes que nous posons au quotidien peuvent tellement avoir une signification différente, tout dépendant notre état. Et pour ceux qui vivent avec un handicap, la lecture de ce vécu ne peut être qu'inspirante. » Linda Plouffe.

  • Author:
    Del Rey, Lana
    Summary:

    THE HIGHLY ANTICIPATED SPOKEN WORD POETRY COLLECTION FROM LANA DEL REY, VIOLET BENT BACKWARDS OVER THE GRASS " Violet Bent Backwards Over the Grass is the title poem of the book and the first poem I wrote of many. Some of which came to me in their entirety, which I dictated and then typed out, and some that I worked laboriously picking apart each word to make the perfect poem. They are eclectic and honest and not trying to be anything other than what they are and for that reason I'm proud of them, especially because the spirit in which they were written was very authentic." — Lana Del Rey Lana Del Rey brings her breathtaking poetry to life in an unprecedented audiobook. In this stunning spoken word performance, Lana Del Rey reads fourteen poems from her debut book Violet Bent Backwards Over the Grass accompanied by music from Grammy Award–winning musician Jack Antonoff. Lana's debut book solidifies her further as "the essential writer of her times" ( The Atlantic ). This audiobook features Lana reading select poems from the book, including LA Who Am I to Love You?, The Land of 1,000 Fires, Past the Bushes Cypress Thriving, Never to Heaven, Tessa DiPietro, Happy, and several others. The result is an extraordinary poetic landscape that reflects the unguarded spirit of its creator.

  • Author:
    Toomey, Craig
    Summary:

    In 1960, Montreal stock broker John Dobson launched an informal investment club with a close group of friends and associates, including future prime minister John Turner. His Formula Growth Fund would go on to become one of North America's most successful investment funds, consistently outperforming the Dow Jones Industrial Average and attracting the likes of legendary investor Sir John Templeton. Up and to the Right tells the story behind John Dobson's investment success as well as his many contributions to entrepreneurial education. Craig Toomey provides valuable insight into Dobson's unconventional but disciplined investment approach, his uncanny ability to predict winning stocks, and his unwavering faith in the market despite its many ups and downs. Coinciding with the sixtieth anniversary of the Formula Growth Fund, this revised edition brings the company's story up to 2019, presenting new material and case studies and describing recent developments, including how Formula Growth tripled its assets under management to $1.5 billion through the launch of a successful hedge fund platform and expansion into Asia. Based on interviews with Dobson as well as with dozens of members of his extensive network of friends, colleagues, and investment professionals, Up and to the Right is a fascinating story about a great Canadian who believed deeply in self-reliance and free enterprise as well as the value of friendship, pursuing one's passions, and working for the greater good.

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