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READS: SSR Guide

Biographies (and memoirs) are about real people.

Autobiographies are written by the person the book is about.

Biographies - click arrows for more

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey is an international television talk show icon, a billionaire, a noted philanthropist, and an adoptive mother of underprivileged children in America and Africa.She has been recognized as one of the world's most powerful people 212 pages.

Selena's secret : the revealing story behind her tragic death - YA

There is no doubt that Yolanda Saldivar pulled the trigger and killed Tejano suyperstar Selena Quintanilla on March 31, 1995. But does anyone know what really happened in room 158 of the Day's Inn, moments before the crime took place? 223 pages.

Jay-Z

48 pages.

A Man Named Moses : the military life of a heroic buffalo soldier - YA

When Moses Williams first enlisted he could not read or write and signed the papers with an ‘X.’ By his second enlistment, he signed his name. Williams eventually would achieve the rank of Ordnance Sergeant, which was the highest rank a black man could achieve in those days.  189 pages.

Why Not Me?

Mindy Kaling shares her ongoing journey to find contentment and excitement in her adult life, whether it's falling in love at work, seeking new friendships in lonely places, or most important, believing that you have a place in Hollywood when you're constantly reminded that no one looks like you. 228 pages.

The Apprentice: my life in the kitchen

World-renowned chef Jacques Pepin tells how he rose from a frightened thirteen year old apprentice in an Old World kitchen to an Emmy Award winning TV superstar who continues to teach millions of Americans how to cook. 318 pages.

On the Court with... Stephen Curry

Discover the amazing achievements of fan favorite two-time MVP Stephen Curry in this brand-new, comprehensive biography. 101 pages.

Reaching for the Stars: the inspiring story of a migrant farmworker turned astronaut

Born into a family of migrant workers, toiling in the fields by the age of six, Jose M. Hernández realized his dream of becoming the first Mexican-American astronaut. 252 pages.

The Diary of a Young Girl (Anne Frank) - YA

The record of two years in the life of a remarkable Jewish girl and one of the most moving and eloquent accounts of the Holocaust, Frank's triumphant humanity in the face of unfathomable deprivation and fear. 274 pages.

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Russell Wilson : standing tall

This book traces the quarterback's rise from North Carolina State to Wisconsin, a detour into professional baseball, and on to the Seahawks and Super Bowl XLVIII. 127 pages.

Notorious RBG : the life and times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg never asked for fame -- she was just trying to make the world a little better and a little freer. But along the way, the feminist pioneer's searing dissents and steely strength have inspired millions. 227 pages.

Born a crime : stories from a South African childhood

Noah's path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother, at the time such a union was punishable by five years in prison. 288 pages.

Hidden figures : the American dream and the untold story of the Black women mathematicians who helped win the space race

Among a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as "human computers" who used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation. 346 pages.

Lion

At only five years old, Saroo Brierley got lost on a train in India. Unable to read or write or recall the name of his hometown or even his own last name, he survived alone for weeks on the rough streets of Calcutta before ultimately being transferred to an agency and adopted by a couple in Australia. 273 pages.

Ida B. Wells : a woman of courage

In 1892, thirty-year-old Ida B. Wells was a success. Born into slavery, she had risen to become co-owner of a Memphis newspaper. But when a white mob lynched a close friend, Ida's life changed forever. Before long, she was speaking out about the evils of lynching and encouraging blacks to leave Memphis. No threats could stop Ida from fighting for her people. 154 pages.

A Long Way Gone: memoirs of a boy soldier - YA

Ishmael Beah, now 25 years old, tells how at the age of twelve, he fled attacking rebels and wandered a land rendered unrecognizable by violence. By thirteen, he'd been picked up by the government army, and Beah, at heart a gentle boy, found that he was capable of truly terrible acts. 229 pages.

I'm Down : a memoir

Traces the author's experiences of growing up with a white father who believed himself to be African-American, describing how his efforts to indoctrinate his daughter into black culture caused her to be rejected by her black and white peers. 273 pages.

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Enchanted air : two cultures, two wings : a memoir

In this memoir Engle, the first Latina woman to receive a Newbery Honor, tells of growing up as a child of two cultures during the Cold War. 192 pages.

Fresh off the Boat : a memoir

Eddie's story is one of food, family and foraging a new notion of what it means to be an American. 276 pages.

She takes a stand : 16 fearless activists who have changed the world

Brave women from the late 1800s through today--role models who are passionate about important issues. Highlights 16 women who have fought for human rights, civil rights, workers' rights, reproductive/sexual rights, and world peace. 192 pages.

Bossypants

Known for TV's Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock, Tina Fey tells the story of how she got to be one of America's premier comediennes. 277 pages.

A Piece of Cake

Cupcake Brown tells of her hellish life: sadistic foster parent, prostitution, drug use and living on the road. But know that Cupcake is now a lawyer with one of the the nation's largest law firms. 472 pages.

Martin Luther King Jr. : Warrior for peace

Peaceful protests for equal rights. 170 pages Advanced Reader

Love becomes a funeral pyre : a biography of The Doors

Spanning the entire history of the Doors, a biography of a band that forever changed popular music. 408 pages.

Find a Way

Memoir of Diana Nyad, who, at the age of 64, Diana Nyad emerged onto the shores of Key West after completing a 110 mile, 53 hour, record-breaking swim through shark-infested waters from Cuba to Florida.  308 pages.

Measure of a Man: from Auschwitz survivor to presidents' tailor

Holocaust survivor Martin Greenfield tells his incredible life story. Now 86 years old and working with his sons, Greenfield has dressed the famous and powerful of D.C. and Hollywood, 234 pages.

American sniper : the autobiography of the most lethal sniper in U.S. military history

Story of a legendary Navy Seal sniper. If you've seen the movie, read the book to learn more. 464 pages.

Jhon Jairo Velasquez

En espanol: Jhon Jairo Velásquez 'Popeye,' uno de los sicarios del Cartel de Medellín, relata por primera vez la cruda historia de su ascenso y caida dentro del carte. 271 pages.

Dying to Survive

In her early 20's Rachael was a desperate heroin addict. This is her story, of how her addiction took her as low as a person can go and how she became a 30 year old student. 225 pages.

Addicted to Danger : a memoir

Adventurist Jim Wickwire has lived life on the edge -- literally. An eyewitness to glory, terror, and tragedy above 20,000 feet, he has braved bitter cold, blinding storms, and avalanches to becomea high-altitude mountaineer. 322 pages (large print)

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