When the temperatures start to dip, there’s nothing more comforting than grabbing your favorite fluffy blanket and curling up with a good book. These seven inspiring memoirs will give you all the feels (have tissues nearby!).
Off the Rails by Susan Burrowes
It’s a parent’s worst nightmare, a teenager devoured by drug addiction. Hannah’s parents tried every tactic they could come up with but they saw her slipping away a little more every day. In desperation they send her to a wilderness program and then to residential treatment. Off the Rails shares both Hannah’s and her mother’s perspectives and provides a look into the love and determination it took for them to all come out on the other side.
On Sunset by Kathryn Harrison
When she was a young child, her grandparent’s large Tudor home felt like a mansion to Kathryn Harrison. She called the location “Sunset” and used her imagination to reign over the kingdom during her time there. Throughout the years she learned of the incredible lives that her grandparents lived before arriving in the U.S. When the house must be sold, Kathryn returns to ensure that all her memories and keepsakes, literal and figurative, are protected.
Boot Language by Vanya Erickson
On the surface Vanya had the ideal childhood with frequent trips to the opera and days spent riding horses with her father in the picturesque Sierra Nevada mountains. When her father begins to have flashbacks of his time in the service, she realized it was all a facade. She pushed those memories aside in an attempt to survive her childhood unscathed only to have them bubble to the surface as an adult.
I Can’t Date Jesus by Michael Arceneaux
Arceneaux’s collection of beautiful essays chronicle what his life looked like as a young gay black man. His entire community, from his parents to his church, had no issues voicing that those like him were wrong. His circumstances did nothing to help his self-esteem, but he survived with an acerbic wit and sharp insight despite them. Oh, and there’s a lot of love for Beyoncé sprinkled in, too.
48 Peaks by Cheryl Suchors
Cheryl Suchors has a deep desire to be in control but when facing the death of her best friend, she feels lost. Her determination to hike all 48 peaks of the White Mountains in New Hampshire is, in part, a means to help her regain control as well as a process to heal her heart. Her journey will inspire you to tackle the peaks in your life, messy obstacles and all.
In Pieces by Sally Field
Over the last 50 years, Sally Field has been dazzling us with her sweet smile and acting talent. From the wholesome girl she played in Gidget to the strong, game-changing character she played in Norma Rae, Field has proved that she has immeasurable range. Her memoir shows a part of her none of us would have imagined: an anxious and lonely little girl. She’ll take you backstage for all the biggest moments of her life and tell how she overcame a complicated relationship with her mother. Prepare to be touched and inspired.
Not a Poster Child by Francine Falk-Allen
At just three years old, Francine Falk-Allen was struck with Polio, spending a great deal of time in the hospital. Throughout her life, despite the hardships brought about by the virus, she tried as best she could to not let it hold her back. She’s always strived for a complete and fulfilling life and touches on all the areas that she was successful as well as those in which she struggled. Not a Poster Child is an honest look at living with a disability with humility and humor.