Celebrate Dear Diary Day with the Best Memoirs of 2018

Celebrate Dear Diary Day with the Best Memoirs of 2018


September 22 is Dear Diary Day, and the Bookish editors are excited to celebrate. Diaries have a lot in common with one of our favorite genres: memoirs. Both are typically written in the first person, record the writer’s experiences, and have a strong sense of voice. To mark the occasion, we’ve rounded up 12 of our favorite memoirs that have come out in 2018 so far. Get reading, and who knows—these picks might even inspire you to pick up a pen and start writing your own story.

Educated by Tara Westover

In Educated, Tara Westover recounts her harrowing childhood in a family of survivalists in rural Idaho, and her subsequent departure for college and then graduate school.

Heart Berries by Terese Marie Mailhot

Terese Marie Mailhot writes about her upbringing on the Seabird Island Indian Reservation and the trauma that is sadly so prevalent in indigenous communities.

The Recovering by Leslie Jamison

Leslie Jamison weaves together two major narrative threads in this memoir: one about the relationships between artists and alcohol, and one about Jamison’s own struggles with addiction.

So Close to Being the Sh*t, Y’all Don’t Even Know by Retta

Retta will inspire and entertain readers with this memoir about her breakthrough as a comedian. Along the way, she dishes on subjects as diverse as hockey, neurosurgery, and Parks and Recreation.

Sick by Porochista Khakpour

Porochista Khakpour’s memoir tells the story of the author’s long journey to a late-stage Lyme Disease diagnosis, and shows readers the incredible challenges and frustrations of living with a poorly understood disease.

The Girl Who Smiled Beads by Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil

Clemantine Wamariya was just a child in 1994 when the Rwandan genocide changed her life and country forever. The story follows Wamariya’s journey to the United States, where she had new opportunities but could not forget the horrors she had experienced.

The Best Cook in the World by Rick Bragg

Rick Bragg waxes nostalgic about his mother’s cooking and his upbringing in this memoir that also includes delectable family recipes. A warning: This one will make you hungry.

The Line Becomes a River by Francisco Cantú

Francisco Cantú worked as a Border Patrol agent where he saw firsthand the suffering and violence surrounding the U.S-Mexico border. The things he witnessed haunted him, and eventually, he left the job. He writes about the experience in this eye-opening memoir.

When They Call You a Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and asha bandele

Patrisse Khan-Cullors co-founded Black Lives Matter, and here shares her own story as well as the genesis of the this influential social justice movement.

The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind by Barbara K. Lipska and Elaine McArdle

Barbara Lipska, a prominent neuroscientist, battled brain cancer and survived because of a cutting-edge immunotherapy treatment. Here, Lipska writes about her illness and recovery.

Eat the Apple by Matt Young

At the tender age of eighteen, Matt Young decided he would join the Marine Corps. This is the story of what he saw in his years in Iraq, and how it altered the course of his life.

Reporter by Seymour M. Hersh

Seymour M. Hersh is of one the most famous living journalists in the world, and here, he opens up about his life story and accomplishments.


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