Whether they provide a glimpse into the past or capture the life of a contemporary icon, biographies and memoirs let us walk in someone else’s shoes.

The Amazon Books editors compiled a list of the 100 biographies and memoires that everyone should read in their lifetime.

A few of the titles are admittedly novels (or "authors shrouding their experiences within the cloak of fiction," as the Amazon editors put it) while others are classic biographies, but all of the books are essential reading on some of the world's most famous politicians, comedians, musicians, chefs, freedom fighters, and artists.

From the autobiographies of Malala Yousafzai and Barak Obama to the storied lives of historical titans like Winston Churchill and Frederick Douglass, keep scrolling to see the 100 biographies you should add to your reading list.

"A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" by Dave Eggers

"A Long Way Gone" by Ishmael Beah

"A Moveable Feast" by Ernest Hemingway

"A Walk in the Woods" by Bill Bryson 

"American Caesar" by William Manchester

"American Lion" by Jon Meacham

"American Prometheus" by Kai Bird 

"American Sniper" by Chris Kyle

"American Sphinx" by Joseph J. Ellis

"Angela's Ashes" by Frank McCourt 

"Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl" by Anne Frank

"Autobiography of a Face" by Lucy Grealy

"Autobiography of Mark Twain" by Mark Twain

"Ball Four" by Jim Bouton

"Black Boy" by Richard Wright

"Black Like Me" by John Howard Griffin

"Born Standing Up" by Steve Martin

"Born to Run" by Christopher McDougall

"Bossypants" by Tina Fey

"Cash" by Johnny Cash

"Catherine the Great" by Robert K. Massie

"Chronicles" by Bob Dylan

"Churchill: A Life" by Martin Gilbert

"Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice" by Phillip Hoose

"Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness" by William Styron

"De Profundis and Other Prison Writings" by Oscar Wilde

"Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight" by Alexandra Fuller

"Dorothy Parker" by Marion Meade

"Dreams from My Father" by Barack Obama 

"Drinking: A Love Story" by Caroline Knapp

"Dust Tracks on a Road" by Zora Neale Hurston

"E=mc~2" by David Bodanis

"Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert

"Endurance" by Alfred Lansing

"Everybody Was So Young" by Amanda Vaill

"Helen Keller: The Story of My Life" by Helen Keller

"I Am Malala" by Malala Yousafzai 

"I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou

"Into the Wild" by Jon Krakauer

"Just Kids" by Patti Smith

"Kitchen Confidential" by Anthony Bourdain

"Knock Wood" by Candice Bergen 

"Life" by Keith Richards

"Long Walk to Freedom" by Nelson Mandela 

"Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius

"Mortality" by Christopher Hitchens

"My Life in France" by Julia Child 

"Naked" by David Sedaris

"Napoleon" by Andrew Roberts

"Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass" by Frederick Douglass

"Night" by Elie Wiesel

"Notes of a Native Son" by James Baldwin

"On the Road" by Jack Kerouac

"Open" by Andre Agassi

"Out of Africa" by Isak Dinesen

"Personal History" by Katharine Graham

"Robert A. Caro's The Years of Lyndon Johnson" by Robert A. Caro

"Running with Scissors" by Augusten Burroughs

"Savage Beauty" by Nancy Milford

"Seabiscuit: An American Legend" by Laura Hillenbrand 

"Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher" by Timothy Egan 

"Speak, Memory" by Vladimir Nabokov

"Steve Jobs" by Walter Isaacson

"Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" by Richard P. Feynman

"Tennessee Williams" by John Lahr

"The Agony and the Ecstasy" by Irving Stone

"The Andy Warhol Diaries" by Andy Warhol

"The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas" by Gertrude Stein

"The Autobiography of Malcolm X" by Malcolm X

"The Basketball Diaries" by Jim Carroll

"The Bell Jar" by Sylvia Plath

"The Color of Water" by James McBride

"The Complete Maus" by Art Spiegelman

"The Complete Persepolis" by Marjane Satrapi

"The Diary of Anais Nin" by Anais Nin

"The Diary of Frida Kahlo" by Carlos Fuentes

"The Glass Castle" by Jeannette Walls

"The Gulag Archipelago" by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

"The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" by Rebecca Skloot

"The Kid Stays in the Picture" by Robert Evans

"The Last Lone Inventor" by Evan I. Schwartz

"The Liars' Club" by Mary Karr

"The Motorcycle Diaries" by Ernesto Che Guevara

"The Professor and the Madman" by Simon Winchester

"The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt" by Edmund Morris

"The Soul of A New Machine" by Tracy Kidder

"The Tender Bar" by J. R. Moehringer

"The Woman Warrior" by Maxine Hong Kingston

"The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion

"This Boy's Life" by Tobias Wolff

"Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr." by Ron Chernow

"Touching the Void" by Joe Simpson

"Travels with Charley in Search of America" by John Steinbeck 

"Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand

"Under the Tuscan Sun" by Frances Mayes

"Updike" by Adam Begley

"Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov)" by Stacy Schiff

"West with the Night" by Beryl Markham

"Wild Swans" by Jung Chang

"Wild" by Cheryl Strayed

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See Also:

100 Mysteries Everyone Should Read In Their Lifetime100 Children’s Books Everyone Should Read In Their Lifetime100 Books Everyone Should Read Before They Die

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