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Autobiography

An autobiography (from the Greek, αὐτός-autos self + βίος-bios life + γράφειν-graphein to write) is a book about the life of a person, written by that person.

Closely associated with autobiography (and sometimes difficult to precisely distinguish from it) is the form of memoir. However, an autobiography typically focuses on the "life and times" of the writer, while a memoir has a narrower, more intimate focus on his or her own memories, feelings and emotions.

Also see Biography Memoir and Memoir.

All You Can Ever Know: A Memoir
This Will Only Hurt a Little
Heavy: An American Memoir
The Greatest Love Story Ever Told
My Squirrel Days
Hey, Kiddo
Everything's Trash, But It's Okay
I Might Regret This: Essays, Drawings, Vulnerabilities, and Other Stuff
To Shake the Sleeping Self: A Journey from Oregon to Patagonia, and a Quest for a Life with No Regret
Always Look on the Bright Side of Life: A Sortabiography
A Mind Unraveled
Thirst: A Story of Redemption, Compassion, and a Mission to Bring Clean Water to the World
A Dream Called Home
She Wants It: Desire, Power, and Toppling the Patriarchy
Belonging: A German Reckons with History and Home
Educated
This Will Only Hurt a Little
Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood
When Breath Becomes Air
In Pieces
Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love & Baking Biscuits
Calypso
The Greatest Love Story Ever Told
I Might Regret This: Essays, Drawings, Vulnerabilities, and Other Stuff
My Thoughts Exactly
Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life...And Maybe the World
Small Fry
Yes Please
Between the World and Me
My Squirrel Days
Blood River by Tim ButcherNight by Elie WieselAngela's Ashes by Frank McCourtThe Trigger by Tim ButcherRunning with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
Memoirs by Men
986 books — 608 voters
The Kite Runner by Khaled HosseiniThe Diary of a Young Girl by Anne FrankThe Book Thief by Markus ZusakEat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth GilbertThe Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
Life in a Foreign Country
547 books — 329 voters

Running with Scissors by Augusten BurroughsThe Glass Castle by Jeannette WallsMe Talk Pretty One Day by David SedarisDry by Augusten BurroughsGirl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen
Best Strange and Twisted Memoirs
428 books — 948 voters


The Diary of a Young Girl
Bossypants
Night (The Night Trilogy, #1)
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
The Glass Castle
Yes Please
I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban
Angela's Ashes (Frank McCourt, #1)
The Autobiography of Malcolm X
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail
Eat, Pray, Love
Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood
When Breath Becomes Air
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Related Genres

Jim Abbott
Jim Abbott Imperfect: An Improbable Life
His Favorite Sports Books: The Major League pitching phenom and gold medalist lines up his top five athletic reads in honor of his autobiography, Imperfect.
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Charles Darwin
...Whilst on board the Beagle I was quite orthodox, and I remember being heartily laughed at by several of the officers... for quoting the Bible as an unanswerable authority on some point of morality... But I had gradually come by this time, i.e., 1836 to 1839, to see that the Old Testament from its manifestly false history of the world, with the Tower of Babel, the rainbow at sign, &c., &c., and from its attributing to God the feelings of a revengeful tyrant, was no more to be trusted t ...more
Charles Darwin, The Autobiography of Charles Darwin, 1809–82

Don DeLillo
It was only after two years' work that it occurred to me that I was a writer. I had no particular expectation that the novel would ever be published, because it was sort of a mess. It was only when I found myself writing things I didn't realise I knew that I said, 'I'm a writer now.' The novel had become an incentive to deeper thinking. That's really what writing is—an intense form of thought.
Don DeLillo

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Tags contributing to this page include: autobiography, auto-biography, and autobiographies