Friday, July 15, 2011

A Batch of Bios

Normally I prefer to read fiction, but recently I've read some really great biographies.  They were fascinating and rich with detail.  All of them page-turners for the most part.

The first one was "The Maybelline Story", by Sharrie Williams.  It detailed the history of the Maybelline dynasty from it's beginnings in 1911 up until the current day.  The family members are all very much characters and the story reads like a soap opera.  It even had a bit of mystery to it.  Definitely two thumbs up from this reader.

Not too long after that the next bio was "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" by Rebecca Skloot.  This is the story of how one woman's cancerous cell biopsy lead to the first cell cultures being grown.  From there they go around the world and are involved in an incredible number of discoveries and developments in the fields of science and medicine.  It also details the lives of her children and how they felt when they discovered what had been taken from their mother and how it had been used.  Again, it was written to keep you turning those pages.  Excellent read!

The last one was "Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand.  This was my favorite.  It tells the story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who goes on to serve in the air force during World War II.  He is shot down over the Pacific and survives for 47 days on a life raft only to be 'rescued' by the Japanese.  The account of his time as a POW is amazing.  Laura's handling of the story is vivid and compelling.  I highly recommend this read to one and all.

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