Reading List May/June 2010

by Mary Karr
A no-holds-barred memoir from a writer who has already penned two. In Liar’s Club (1998), Karr wrote humorously and touchingly of her unusual childhood in Leechfield, Texas, with an alcoholic mother—who married seven times—and violent father, who was fond of lying. In 2005, she followed up with Cherry, chronicling her adolescent years. In Lit, she comes full circle, revealing her own alcoholism, and the path to her sobriety.

Dreams from My Father,
by Barack Obama
First published in 1995, when Obama was a Senate hopeful, this memoir is an intimate look at the President’s formative years. Obama illuminates his parents’ marriage and his nearly non-existent relationship with his father. He writes in-depth about his college years, events that ultimately shaped his political views, and how a trip to Kenya, his father’s native country, offered him a greater understanding of race, culture, and identity.

Hidden Jewel:
Lies My Mother Never Told Me,
by Kaylie Jones
The daughter of James Jones— the author of the classic World War II novel, From Here to Eternity, Kaylie grew up with a famous father and an alcoholic mother. She lived in the spotlight and shadow of her father’s celebrity, eventually joining the family fraternity of alcoholism. But, Kaylie also inherited a love of books and writing from her father and, after his death, it was his writing—and then her own—that inspired her to overcome her addiction.

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