Memorable Memoirs and Me

Because of my love of place, and of the written word, the memoirs that most speak to me are those that describe how much the land, or the space, or the room have influenced and shaped one’s life. Looking into their lives allows me to seek out corners of humanity and the world that I might not see any other way.

For example, Alexandra Fuller’s stark and honest memoirs on her African childhood conjure up wood smoke and scorching sun and a desperate aching love for family that pulls you into a mind both humorous and tragic. Plus the titles are eye catching – Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight and Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness. I feel that Laura Bell’s memoir of moving to a sheep camp in Wyoming has some of the best writing that I have ever read, including a poignant chapter on grief and dealing with the death of a beloved niece. Mary Clearman Blew writes about the mountains and rivers just outside my Library window, and revisiting those areas through her eyes will bring a sense of nostalgia to any Central Montanan. And since I was convinced as a child that I was a long lost relative of Laura Ingalls Wilder (maybe even was Laura Ingalls Wilder!) there is the heartening memoir by Wendy McClure on Wilder The Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House of the Prairie. For a bit of intrigue, read Cornelia Maude Spelman’s mysterious memoir on her mother’s life titled Missing. This is a slim volume about a woman looking to the secrets of the past for answers to her future. These books and more are included in my reading list, and I encourage you to check out our memoir and biography sections at the Library for interesting people with unforgettable lives who spark memorable conversations.

Reading List – Memorable Memoirs
Claiming Ground by Laura Bell
All But the Waltz by Mary Clearman Blew
Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller
Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness by Alexandra Fuller
Happens Every Day by Isabel Gillies
Missing by Cornelia Maude Spelman
Indian Creek Chronicles by Pete Fromm
Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes
Call the Midwife by Jennifer Worth
The Wilder Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie by Wendy McClure