Biography Archive

Lennon: The Man, the Myth, the Music, The Definitive Life - Guest Butler Joe DePreta, a New York marketing consultant and writer on cultural trends, is a student of musicology from Sinatra to the Sex Pistols. When I was a kid, my

American Lady: The Life of Susan Mary Alsop - Adultery. The subject of the week. And how odd. Just days after an election that saw voters endorse women’s reproductive rights, gay marriage and legal weed, it turns out that

Bob Dylan - Two hundred and twenty reviews into this venture, and not one about Bob Dylan. What does that tell you? It might suggest that the proprietor of either needs a lot of warm-up

Branch Rickey - On the morning before John F. Kennedy’s funeral, every reporter in Washington stood along the route of the horse-drawn casket. Jimmy Breslin went up to Arlington National Cemetery and watched Clifton

Broken: A Love Story - It's two for one in "Broken: A Love Story" --- biography and autobiography merge in the dusty horse corrals of Wyoming's Wind River Reservation. Take one student, give her one

Bunker Spreckels: Surfing’s Divine Prince of Decadence - When it comes to books as gifts, I vote for anything about surfing. For one thing, it's a perverse choice. You can be pretty much assured that the recipient has

Buried Alive: The Biography of Janis Joplin - Everybody knows about Janis Joplin. She had that raspy Texas voice and those hippie clothes and she drank and swore like a guy. She was famous for being

Camus, A Romance - On January 4, 1960 --- exactly fifty years ago --- Albert Camus had a train ticket to Paris in his pocket. But he chose to travel with a friend who

Charlatan -

Churchill - "Of all the towering figures of the twentieth century, both good and evil, Winston Churchill was the most valuable to humanity, and also the most likable. It is a joy

Darker Than the Deepest Sea: The Search for Nick Drake -   Darker Than the Deepest

Diane Arbus - We reeled out of the Diana Arbus show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art into the blissful order of the Renaissance art rooms. You would have too. Because, among other photographs,

Dora Lives: The Authorized Story of Miki Dora - Miki Dora was born in Budapest in 1934. His parents moved to Los Angeles and divorced. When his mother married Gard Chapin, the boy's fate was sealed --- Chapin was a legendary

Everybody Was So Young - Zelda Fitzgerald, after a painful life, suffered a terrible death --- she was a patient at the Highland Mental Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina, and the building caught fire, and because

Forty Ways to Look at JFK - Who does this sound like? He was an indifferent student. When he had to write a senior thesis in college, he hired a secretary and five stenographers. His father got him

Frank Sinatra - Frank Sinatra was born on December 12, 1915 --- he would have been 100 last year. That was cause for... commerce. So there was something new and remarkable for Sinatra

Girls Like Us: Carole King, Joni Mitchell, Carly Simon — and the Journey of a Generation - 525 pages about Carole King, Joni Mitchell and Carly Simon --- and this is the beach book for smart boomer women? I'm not kidding. This book is that good. And that addictive. Just

Hannah Arendt: A Life in Dark Times - We all know one fact about Hannah Arendt: In her book about Adolf Eichmann, the Nazi SS officer who helped to carry out Hitler’s “Final Solution,” she used the phrase

How Georgia Became O’Keeffe: Lessons on the Art of Living - Anybody feel the need to know one thing more about Georgia O’Keeffe? How about Coco Chanel? And, while we’re at it, let’s throw in Katharine Hepburn. I can’t think of three women who

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: An Autobiography in Books - In 1986, I wrote a cover story for New York magazine called “The Working Rich: The Real Slaves of New York." My focus was on Carolyne Roehm, a designer of