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Best Biographies

Recommendations from 47 articles, Barack Obama, Selena Gomez, Jimmy Fallon and 96 others.
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Team of Rivals
The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
Doris Kearns Goodwin - Sep 26, 2006 (first published in 2005)
Goodreads Rating
Winner of the Lincoln PrizeAcclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin illuminates Lincoln's political genius in this highly original work, as the one-term congressman and prairie lawyer rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become president.On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates,...
Shoe Dog
A Memoir by the Creator of Nike
Phil Knight - May 01, 2018 (first published in 2016)
Goodreads Rating
In this instant and tenacious New York Times bestseller, Nike founder and board chairman Phil Knight “offers a rare and revealing look at the notoriously media-shy man behind the swoosh” (Booklist, starred review), opening up about his company’s early days as an intrepid start-up and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing,...
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt
Edmund Morris - Nov 01, 2001 (first published in 1979)
Goodreads Rating
Selected by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best nonfiction books of all timeDescribed by the Chicago Tribune as "a classic," The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt stands as one of the greatest biographies of our time. The publication of The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt on September 14th, 2001 marks the 100th anniversary of Theodore Roosevelt becoming ...
Recommended by
Ryan Holiday
Churchill
A life
Martin Gilbert - Jan 01, 1991
Goodreads Rating
It is impossible to understand the Second World War without understanding Winston Churchill, the bold British Prime Minister who showed himself to be one of the greatest statesmen any nation has ever known. This lengthy biography is a single-volume abridgment of a massive, eight-volume work that took a quarter-century to write. It covers Churchill'...
Destiny and Power
The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush
Jon Meacham - Oct 18, 2016 (first published in 2015)
Goodreads Rating
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - In this brilliant biography, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jon Meacham chronicles the life of George Herbert Walker Bush.NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST AND ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review - Time - NPR - St. Louis Post-DispatchDrawing on President ...
Custer's Trials
A Life on the Frontier of a New America
T.J. Stiles - Oct 25, 2016 (first published in 2015)
Goodreads Rating
Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for HistoryIn this magisterial biography, T. J. Stiles paints a portrait of Custer both deeply personal and sweeping in scope, proving how much of Custer's legacy has been ignored. He demolishes Custer's historical caricature, revealing a capable yet insecure man, intelligent yet bigoted, passionate yet self-destru...
The Power Broker
Robert Moses and the Fall of New York
Robert A. Caro - Jul 12, 1975 (first published in 1974)
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One of the most acclaimed books of our time, winner of both the Pulitzer and the Francis Parkman prizes, The Power Broker tells the hidden story behind the shaping (and mis-shaping) of twentieth-century New York (city and state) and makes public what few have known: that Robert Moses was, for almost half a century, the single most powerful man of o...
Recommended by
Ryan Holiday
The Passage of Power
The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol. IV
Robert A. Caro - May 07, 2013
Goodreads Rating
A New York Times Top Ten Book of 2012Best Biography of 2012, National Book Critics CircleA Washington Post Notable Work of NonfictionA Best Book of the Year: The Boston Globe, Entertainment Weekly, St. Louis Dispatch The Passage of Power follows Lyndon Johnson through both the most frustrating and most triumphant periods of his career—1958 to 1964....
Long Walk to Freedom
The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela - Oct 01, 1995 (first published in 1994)
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Nelson Mandela is one of the great moral and political leaders of our time: an international hero whose lifelong dedication to the fight against racial oppression in South Africa won him the Nobel Peace Prize and the presidency of his country. Since his triumphant release in 1990 from more than a quarter-century of imprisonment, Mandela has been at...
Unbroken
An Olympian's Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive
Laura Hillenbrand - Apr 25, 2017
Goodreads Rating
The #1 New York Times  bestseller, which is also a major motion picture directed by Angelina Jolie, has now been adapted by the author for young adults. Beautifully illustrated throughout, this riveting biography includes more than 100 black-and-white photos, as well as exclusive content, "In Conversation," with Laura Hillenbrand and Louie Zamperin...
Recommended by
Guy Kawasaki
The Autobiography of Malcolm X
Malcolm X - Sep 29, 1992 (first published in 1965)
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With its first great victory in the landmark Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, the civil rights movement gained the powerful momentum it needed to sweep forward into its crucial decade, the 1960s. As voices of protest and change rose above the din of history and false promises, one voice sounded more urgently, more passion...
Napoleon by Andrew Roberts
Eisenhower in War and Peace by Jean Edward Smith
Shirley Jackson by Ruth Franklin
Edison - A Biography by Matthew Josephson
The Path to Power by Robert A. Caro
Titan by Ron Chernow
The Accidental President by A. J. Baime
Last Train to Memphis by Peter Guralnick
Boyd by Robert Coram
Peter the Great by Robert K. Massie
John Adams by John Ferling
Reagan by H. W. Brands
Updike by Adam Begley
President without a Party by Christopher J. Leahy
Radioactive by Lauren Redniss
Prairie Fires by CAROLINE FRASER
Ruth Bader Ginsburg by Jane Sherron de Hart
Grant by Ron Chernow
The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman
Educated by Tara Westover
The Last Lion by William Manchester
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Clayborne Carson
My Bondage and My Freedom by Frederick Douglass
When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Totto-Chan by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi
First They Killed My Father by Loung Ung
"Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" by Richard P. Feynman
On Writing by Stephen King
Little Leaders by Vashti Harrison
Sam Walton by Sam Walton
How to Live by Sarah Bakewell
Buffett by Roger Lowenstein
The Bully Pulpit by Doris Kearns Goodwin
A. Lincoln by Ronald C. White Jr.
Malala's Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai
Being Nixon by Evan Thomas
Stalin by Simon Sebag Montefiore
Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov
The Right Word by Jen Bryant
Plutarch's Lives, Volume 2 by Plutarch
Sherman by B. H. Liddell Hart
Plutarch's Lives by Plutarch
The Mayor of Castro Street by Randy Shilts
I am Amelia Earhart by Brad Meltzer
Eleanor Roosevelt, Vol. 1 by Blanche Wiesen Cook
The Girl Who Thought in Pictures by Julia Finley Mosca
Wrapped in Rainbows by Valerie Boyd
Ida by Paula J Giddings
Leif the Lucky by Ingri d’Aulaire
Dancing Hands by Margarita Engle
Washington by James Thomas Flexner
Balderdash! by Michelle Markel
Madame Fourcade's Secret War by Lynne Olson
The Spiritual Danger of Donald Trump by Ronald J. Sider
John Quincy Adams by Harlow Giles Unger
Noah Webster and His Words by Jeri Chase Ferris
Pablo Neruda by Monica Brown
Barbara Jordan by Mary Beth Rogers
Danza! by Duncan Tonatiuh
If This Is a Man and The Truce by Primo Levi
Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty
Becoming by Michelle Obama
The Choice by Dr. Edith Eva Eger
Poor Charlie's Almanack by Peter D. Kaufman
Endurance by Alfred Lansing
Martin's Big Words by Doreen Rappaport
Master Of The Senate by Robert A. Caro
The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown
Women in Science by Rachel Ignotofsky
Iggy Peck, Architect by Andrea Beaty
Only the Paranoid Survive by Andrew S. Grove
The Minds of Billy Milligan by Daniel Keyes
The Center Cannot Hold by Elyn R. Saks
Minor Feelings by Cathy Park Hong
Rebel Yell by S. C. Gwynne
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford by Jack Weatherford
Rosa by Nikki Giovanni
Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan
Dreamers by Yuyi Morales
Amazing Grace by Eric Metaxas
Separate Is Never Equal by Duncan Tonatiuh
Until Tuesday by Luis Carlos Montalván
Soñadores by Yuyi Morales
Moses by Carole Boston Weatherford
Lincoln by Gore Vidal
American Ulysses by Ronald C. White