Graphic Novel Memoirs and Biographies for Adults

Graphic Novel Memoirs and Biographies for Adults

Hate reading? Many successful writers of books are now writing graphic novels (aka comics for adults); including graphic novel memoirs.

Because, lets face it, not everyone is a born reader or loves to read. When a picture paints a thousand words – and some us just understand pictures, or drawings better a graphic novel is the answer.

No longer just for kids, this list of the best selling graphic novel memoirs and graphic novel biographies, is for Adults!  As a graphic novel has far fewer words it can draw you into the imagery of the story quicker – which is encouraging for slower and reluctant readers of all ages.

5 Best Selling Graphic Novel Memoirs for Adults

1. Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened – Allie Brosh

graphic novel memoir
Unique, witty and insightful, Hyperbole and a Half is a collection of comics that touch on many mundane and also serious subjects. This book contains a collection of comics, some that have appeared in Brosh’s hugely popular blog of the same name, but more than half are never before published material. While the illustrations are deceptively simple, Brosh demonstrates a special knack for capturing complex emotions and presenting her thoughts on a subject matter in a darkly humorous, yet brutally honest way.   To quote Allie, its about “stories about things that happened to me” and “stories about things that happened to other people because of me”.

2. Amazing Fantastic Incredible: A Marvelous Memoir – Stan Lee

graphic novel memoir

One can only expect the man who created many of the most iconic comic book characters would be quite an interesting persona himself. Indeed, in his aptly titled memoir; presented in the medium which he has been known for, one will come to find out there are many interesting aspects of Stan Lee’s life that even the most hardcore fans of his work will be surprised and amused about. If you have always been a lifelong fan of superheroes and the graphic storytelling medium, you will enjoy reading about the man whose imagination they sprang from.

3. Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic – Alison Bechdel

graphic novel memoir

When the ‘fun’ in the book title actually refers to funeral, you’d expect a dark and depressing memoir. While Fun Home does deal with dark themes like death, the pains of growing up homosexual and coming out of the closet, it is hardly a sullen memoir.

It is gripping, thoughtful and somewhat funny graphically rendered account of growing up in rural Pennsylvania. One can’t help but empathize with Bechdel, who managed to make peace with herself and her past after all.

Ed: This book is now a Broadway Musical!

4. Persepolis: – Marjane Satrapi

graphic novel memoir

Featured in many of our book lists before; our list of graphic novel memoirs would not be complete without this well known graphic novel.

Rendered in beautiful black and white illustrations, Persepolis is an autobiography that conveyed what it was like to experience the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq war as a child in the 1970s and 80s. It presents a rare brutally honest view of Iranian society, without too much emphasis on history and sociology.

After all, the autobiography is not meant so much as a social commentary as it is a personal account of childhood during an interesting period in a nation’s history.

5. Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?: A Memoir – Roz Chast

graphic novel memoir

One of the greatest concerns many people have as they grow old is being a burden to their children. Cartoonist Chast is the only child, born to older parents. In her graphical memoir, she provides an honest and very personal account of her mixed feelings dealing with her parents as they aged, and eventually could no longer care for themselves. It may be a difficult story to read, but it does offer some food for thought on the uncomfortable subject of aging and losing one’s independence.

Political Biographies – mind blowing non fiction

Political Biographies – mind blowing non fiction

The saying ‘truth is stranger than fiction’ definitely applies to biographies of political leaders.

If you want some truly mind blowing non fiction to read, then try these. 5 biographies and autobiographies of some great past and present (and want to be) political leaders.

1. Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela

The book that inspired the major new motion picture Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

This is the original and unabridged version of the inspiring autobiography by the internationally acclaimed South African president from the mid to late 1990’s.  Read his personal life account written in secret while spending 27 years in prison. Learn how to always have hope from a man who changed a nation due to an unbreakable devotion to freedom.

2. Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life StoryArnold Schwarzenegger

How can lifting weights lead to a being an international movie star surrounded by wealth and power? Arnold Schwarzenegger explains how he achieved this unforgettable dream life in his autobiography, Total Recall. Self-serving drives and a larger than life ego lead him to become the best at one thing, Body Building. But, if being the best at one thing can be achieved then why stop there? Discover “Arnold’s Rules” to success and his amazing transformation from a poor Austrian boy to a world icon who married into one of the most famous of families, The Kennedy’s. Definitely a mind blowing non fiction book that seems like it should be fantasy.

3. Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success – Michael D’Antonio

Although he’s not a rags to riches tale, Donald Trump has had a career of ups and downs that have ultimately led to him being one of the most successful businessmen in the world. Learn why the belief in yourself and an undying drive for success can lead to becoming a living symbol of wealth. Having one of the most entertaining personalities in the modern world, Trump tells us what he thinks it takes to be worthy of respect.  Whether he will succeed as a political leader, only time will tell.

4. Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln – Doris Kearns Goodwin

Focusing on his political cabinet rather than his life story, we have a fresh look at Abraham Lincoln’s presidency and his rivals. An unpopular Illinois lawyer uses his opposing contenders to his advantage in the 1860 presidential nomination. This book of multiple biographies reveals how Lincoln used his leadership skills to keep a separating nation together with the help of his well accomplished rivals turned allies.

5. The New Tsar: The Rise and Reign of Vladimir Putin – Steven Lee Myers

From his childhood struggling in the aftermath of WWII to his rise to the top of the Russian political climate, Vladimir Putin has a story worth studying. Author and journalist Steven Lee Myers gives us a serious understanding about the fascinating career of a man who is shaping modern history. This biography is one where we can truly learn to have a vision from a man who’s life was shaped by loyalty and ambition.

Want more mind blowing non fiction?  Visit our other biographical lists including Best Autobiographies of 5 Extraordinary Men

Charles Dickens Biography: Charles Dickens – A Life Biography

Charles Dickens Biography: Charles Dickens – A Life Biography

Charles Dickens Biography

Charles Dickens Biography
The biography of Charles Dickens, named A Life, is billed as such:

The tumultuous life of England’s greatest novelist, beautifully rendered by unparalleled literary biographer Claire Tomalin.

When Charles Dickens died in 1870, The Times of London successfully campaigned for his burial in Westminster Abbey, the final resting place of England’s kings and heroes. Thousands flocked to mourn the best recognized and loved man of nineteenth-century England.

About The Book: Charles Dickens- A Life Biography

Claire Tomalin is a wonderful biography writer. She has told familiar stories very well (Thomas Hardy, Jane Austen); has brought unknown stories to life and she has re-introduced us to the amazing Samuel Pepys.

Her Charles Dickens biography is a fantastic book on a great man. In Tomalin’s biography of Dickens, he seems to leap off the pages. He is boundlessly energetic; he is inconceivably brilliant; he binds friends to him for life. But like you would expect from an authentic biography, it’s not all good. He treats his children horribly, and not them alone.

It is a well-known story, enriched by Tomalin’s unique understanding of the life of Nelly Ternan, Dickens’ mistress. Nelly has a complicated story herself, but the reader comes to share the author’s admiration for her character and for the difficult choices she made.

Charles Dickens has created thousands of unforgettable characters, and he was also known as a hard-working journalist and as a writer of essays.

Charles Dickens Biography

His life was short. He died at the age of 58 but its clear that few writers could have achieved such success in such a short life. In 1862, the Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky, an ardent admirer of Dickens who read “The Pickpick Papers” and “David Copperfield” in prison, visited Dickens in London. Dickens told the Russian that there “were two people in him: one who feels as he ought to feel and one who feels the opposite. From the one who feels the opposite I make my evil characters, from the one who feels as a man ought to feel I try to live my life.”

“Only two people, I asked?”, added Dostoyevsky.

In fact he was right. Dickens had many personalities in him and Claire Tomalin did a wonderful job in trying to describe the many faces of this titan of literature in her biography of him. She writes about his successes and failures. Dickens was very successful allover the world and his tour to the United States only served to prove this. But there were also those, among them his daughter Katey, who despised him and regarded him as an evil man.

Another Russian writer, Leo Tolstoy, confessed that all of Dickens’ characters were his friends, adding that he kept a portrait of the novelist in his room and considered Dickens to be the greatest novelist of the nineteenth century.

This book is a splendid introduction to two great writers: Charles Dickens and Claire Tomalin. Read it, and go on to any of her other books.