Top 10 Autobiographies

 

An autobiography is a self-written life story of the successes and failures of a person. They are usually written by veteran achievers who have faced and seen it all. An autobiography is made to make the world aware of the individual’s life story. They are written from that person’s perspective. Here’s a list of the top ten autobiographies of all time.

 

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

The book revolves around the life struggles of Maya as a black woman during the racial discrimination faced by African- American women, especially during her era.

Read it For:
The life story of the renowned poet and writer. Maya has been very vocal about prominent social issues faced by African- Americans at the time.
Don't Read it For:
The molestation, racism and sexual abuse make it a controversial book. It is, therefore, restricted from certain schools and libraries.
What makes this book stand out?:
Painting a brutally honest picture of the racial discrimination faced by African-Americans.

The Diary of a Young Girl

This is the most famous autobiography in the world, without a doubt. The story is of Anne Frank, a Jewish girl living and hiding in Nazi-ruled Germany with her family, before finally being captured.

Read it For:
The point-of-view of a Jewish girl of a time when Nazism was at its worst.
Don't Read it For:
The real-life account of Anne Frank, written in the form of a diary. The effects of Nazism on the Jews.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being the most highly rated autobiographies of all time. And for a good reason too. Read it yourself to know why this book is so highly regarded.

The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Read about the ascent of Malcolm X from a drug addict to a prominent voice to the African-Americans during the 20th Century after his conversion to Islam, as written by Alex Haley along with Malcolm X himself.

Read it For:
The story of the fall and rise of Malcolm X until his assassination in 1965.
Don't Read it For:
No major faults in this book. It addresses the sensitive times of the 20th Century in racially segregated America.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being a reputed autobiography for both the story’s purpose and the main character himself.

A moveable feast

Autobiography on the life of Ernest Hemingway, this book was published after his death. It tells us about the life of being poor and a writer in Paris after the First World War. This tells us of the story of the writer during his younger days living in Paris, his encounters with other artists who may or may not have the potential to make it big in their career, etc.

Read it For:
The upbringing of the writer from his initial days in his career when he stayed in Paris.
Don't Read it For:
Major flaws in this book aren’t too obvious. If you love Paris and reading Hemingway, this is a good book for you.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being a timeless autobiography.
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Long walk to freedom

This is the story of Nelson Mandela, the former president of South Africa and Nobel Peace Prize winner. Mandela tells the readers how he struggled for his country’s independence from racial oppression and the decades he spent in jail.

Read it For:
Mandela’s story, struggle and rise for himself and his country.
Don't Read it For:
This is a must-read. It isn’t overrated. This book probably is one of the good few who has caught attention in a positive way.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being written by the former president himself and the inspiring true story that was even made into a movie.

On writing: A Memoir of the Craft

This is a book by Stephen King, and the title is a dead giveaway. He tells readers how to write and also how he has changed and shaped his writing skills from school, college all the way to his remarkable career.

Read it For:
Learning from the master himself on the craft of writing. Perfect for budding writers looking for tips from one of the Greats.
Don't Read it For:
There aren’t any reasons not to read this because, A. It’s a good autobiography and B. The story is on the life of Stephen King, the greatest horror story writer of all time. It gives us a peek into his life and how his mind works.
What makes this book stand out?:
The story and the mix of teaching readers how to write and also telling the story, side by side.

Born Standing Up: A comic’s life

This is a story of Steve Martin and his rise in the comic world from the Seventies all the way till 1981, where he abruptly left and his reason. This is the tale of Martin’s climb from childhood to where he is today.

Read it For:
The autobiography of the respected actor and his view on being a comic.
Don't Read it For:
If you’re expecting this book to be full of funny incidents, don’t read it. This is a no-nonsense autobiography by the actor.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being an honest and serious autobiography despite being written by a humorous actor.

The Glass Castle

A memoir on account of Jeannette Walls triumph over escaping the limitations of her life provided by her parents to make a life of her own.

Read it For:
The true, emotional story of the author and obtaining a newfound hope in life.
Don't Read it For:
This is a good book. Better is that it is realistic, and speaks on issues that almost all families face today. We all need to read this.
What makes this book stand out?:
The story and its reliability.

The story of My Life

This is an autobiography of Helen Keller, an acclaimed scholar who managed to complete her education despite her limitations with eyesight and hearing. This is a story of her upbringing and how she achieved the impossible.

Read it For:
Hope and dedication shown by the author and activist.
Don't Read it For:
The school version of this book is a bit dry. Otherwise, it’s an inspiring read.
What makes this book stand out?:
The author makes this book stand out. She would have been something above a pioneer at her time.

Bossypants

The behind the scenes and pre-success days of Tina Fey, from her childhood to her success on SNL and other hit series. This is the tale of the Comedian-actress.

Read it For:
The story and the humorous narration of the writer and actress.
Don't Read it For:
You won’t find reasons not to read this book. It has everything required to be an autobiography.
What makes this book stand out?:
Being humorous as well as realistic.

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