Memoirs with Good Stories

The past few years, I’ve gotten really into memoirs. I have always loved reading biographies, which has something to do with my fascination with history, but lately, I just can’t get enough of this genre! I learn so much from other people telling their stories, and these especially were so good.

Another plus of the memoir genre is they are (usually) not too long, so I can get through them fairly quick. Here are some recent ones I enjoyed!


  1. Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist

I am pre-disposed to love everything Shauna writes, and I typically refer to her as first-name only, just like we are already friends. With that in mind, this book still has become an all-time favorite. It speaks of a lesson I really have been trying to drive home with myself for the last few years, plus I read it last August right after camp ended. Think of it like a breath of fresh air into our over-committed over-busy culture, so if that sounds like something you’d like, it’s a winner. (And her writing is flawless!)

2. Spoken from the Heart by Laura Bush

I have a mild obsession with the first ladies, but this is the first full memoir I’ve read by one. Sidenote: this book does not fit the “can finish quickly” category. It’s long, but fabulous. This has been on my list to read for years, and I’m so thankful I finally picked it up! Since she is a fairly private person who grew up modestly in West Texas, I found her incredibly relatable. I’ll most likely never end up in the White House, but if I did, I think her book is what it would feel like. Fascinating.

3. The Magnolia Story by Chip & Joanna Gaines

Okay so maybe everyone feels like they know everything there is to know about them now, but this book was SO FUN to read. I laughed and cried reading their stories (the book is narrated by both Chip & Jo to show their different perspectives), and felt so inspired by the end of it! If you’re looking for something light-hearted, interesting, and a look behind a (very successful) curtain, this is a great fit.

4. My Life in France by Julia Child

Ohhh this was so fun to read too! The only thing I knew about Julia Child going into this book was the limited experience of watching the movie Julie & Julia a few years ago, and I didn’t love the Julie side of the story, so I probably only watched it once. I do remember being so intrigued by Julia Child though- living in France with nothing to do, so she took up elaborate French cooking and created an empire. How on earth?! I also knew next to nothing about French cuisine, or French culture, so this was an enlightening read for me. Plus she was a really funny character- one time she sent out Christmas cards to friends and family of herself and her husband in a bubble bath. Ha!

5. Nobody’s Cuter Than You by Melanie Shankle

I may or may not already be tearing up thinking about this book. This is a memoir about friendship, and it is the sweetest! If you have a best friend, or if you want a best friend, or if you want to learn how to be a best friend, you’ll love and appreciate this one. (Bonus points if you went to Texas A&M- you’ll get all nostalgic as she recalls her time there!) This book way exceeded my expectations, and would also make a great gift for a friend!

Happy reading!

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