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    14 Inspiring Biographies And Memoirs Everyone Needs To Read

    Some lives are meant to be immortalised on paper!

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    1. This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay - ₹439

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    Kay writes about his experiences and learning during his years in training with the National Health Service(NHS) in the UK. He compiles honest, hilarious and heartbreaking diary entries from his time as a junior doctor detailing his everyday struggles and late nights. While this book is personal and anecdotal in nature it is also political as his time with the NHS displays the many shortcomings and operational issues that need to be dealt with in a government health care system. Readers get to see life in the medical profession through the eyes of a young doctor.

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    2. I've Never Been (Un)Happier by Shaheen Bhatt - ₹230

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    Bhatt writes a heartfelt memoir about her struggles with depression and the effect it had on her life. She was diagnosed when she was only eighteen, at the cusp of adolescence and adulthood. The significant privilege of being part of an urban wealthy family in a metro city doesn't go unnoticed by Bhatt. This however does show us that any amount of privilege doesn't make one immune to depression or other mental disorders.

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    3. Mind Master by Viswanathan Anand (Co-author: Susan Ninan) - ₹379

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    Anand started playing chess at the age of six and grew up to become Asia's first World Chess Champion. Through the years he has formed clear strategies for how to win a match and while doing that learnt quite a few life lessons as well. In this book, he introduces readers to his world. Here you will find tips on how to achieve your goals through conscious tactics and sheer determination. He tells us when to take on risky situations with our head held up high and when to exercise caution and foresight. This may be a book written by a chess champion but it is about more than just chess. Anand's learnings are applicable to people from all walks of life.

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    4. Love, Loss and What We Ate by Padma Lakshmi - ₹480

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    Celebrity chef and American TV host Padma Lakshmi lets us into her closely-guarded private life. She writes about her struggle to settle down in the USA after being born in India and the clash of identities she dealt with all through childhood and adolescence. She sheds light on her early modelling days, love life and forays into the cooking world. We also get a much detailed account of her endometriosis diagnosis and how doctors refused to acknowledge that her pain was unusual for the longest time. Through this memoir, we see a more real side of Padma Lakshmi, one that's always been hidden under her astounding beauty.

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    5. Becoming by Michelle Obama - ₹728

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    From South Side Chicago to Harvard Law School to the White House, Michelle Obama's journey is fascinating to say the very least. She gives readers an insight into her life as First Lady and also all the experiences and lessons that made her the woman she is today. Read about how she learnt to play the piano from her strict aunt, the strong bond she shares with her brother, her time at Harvard and how being a lawyer was not all she hoped it would be. Also earn about how she struggled to accept the constant presence of security, the ruthless media scrutiny and complete lack of privacy her family had to adapt to while Barack followed his ambitions.

    Buy it here.

    6. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight - ₹313

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    What started as a simple shoe import business has grown into a $30 billion making company that everyone has heard of! Read to find out how Knight built the Nike brand from scratch and expanded his operations systematically from the boot of his car to multiple stores across the world. He writes about how he employed people who quickly became family and together they built a brand that was a game-changer in the sports and fitness industry. This is a tale of sheer grit and guts to make his dream a reality.

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    7. Behind Bars in Byculla by Jigna Vora - ₹247

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    Vora, a crime reporter was arrested in connection with a high profile murder. She was later acquitted of all charges. In this book, she writes about her time in prison and all the court hearings that led to her eventual acquittal. She writes about the twisted politics in prison, the specific struggles of female inmates and her interactions with other infamous inmates. Read it for a unique glimpse into prison life as well as stories from her career in crime reporting.

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    8. Educated by Tara Westover - ₹379

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    Imagine an existence that isn't documented, a life without any records. Set in rural America, Tara's story is of such a life. A hyper-religious father who believed the world was going to end and pulled his children out of the schooling system and a mother who worked as an unlicensed midwife make her early life extremely difficult and her upbringing unique to say the least. Her story is of resilience and her determination to learn and seek an education despite being denied one for most of her life. What follows is an account of the difference an education made to her life, a luxury most of us take for granted.

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    9. The Beauty of All My Days by Ruskin Bond - ₹170

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    One of India's favourite author's gives us a peek into his life. Bond talks about the experiences that have made him the person he is and the lessons he has learnt along the way. He reflects on how the place one grows up and lives in has the deepest impact on their life and how India is a huge part of his very existence. He encourages readers to take life as it comes and fearlessly choose their own path to finding themselves.

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    10. Open by Andre Agassi - ₹359

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    You would think that the greatest athletes build their expertise on a lifetime of love for a sport, however, star tennis player Andre Agassi grew up hating tennis! His father groomed him from a very young age so he could be a champion, but his memories are of the constant pressure to perform and gruelling training sessions. Read this book to see exactly what goes into becoming a trophy-winning sportsperson and the sacrifices that have to be made for that coveted Wimbledon championship.

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    11. I Want To Destroy Myself by Malika Amar Shaikh (translated by Jerry Pinto) - ₹120

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    Malika Amar Shaikh grew up in Mumbai amongst the hubbub of Maharashtra politics in the 60s. She went on to marry the famed poet and co-founder of the Dalit Panthers, Namdeo Dhasal at a very young age. In this memoir, she gives us a glimpse into the lesser-known side of the leader she called her husband. A crumbling marriage, domestic violence and alcoholism are only some of the appalling aspects of Amar Shaikh's life. This isn't an easy read but that is only because she writes with honesty and refuses to mince her words. Amar Shaikh's story deserves space in our world.

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    12. A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah - ₹601

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    This is a story of war but told through the eyes of Beah, who used to a child soldier. He was not a mere spectator, he was in the thick of war. In this memoir, he tells us how he became a soldier and how he stopped. An innocent 13-year-old when he was recruited, we learn about how he became a perpetrator of gross violence and destruction. War is not logical or fair and we are not nearly aware of how many people lose themselves in the senseless violence. This story of a young man's past is a stark reminder that we are living in a world that doesn't spare even the purest of our kind.

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    13. Boy Erased by Garrard Conley - ₹341

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    As said in the sub-title, the three pillars of this memoir are identity, faith and family. Conley leans heavily on these pillars to understand and combat his fears. He was outed to his parents as a teenager and forced into a conversion camp. He swings between accepting his own sexuality and risking the loss of the family and friends who have formed his support system all these years. Conley's journey is one of forgiveness, first for himself. Above everything else, this is a story of love and it's ability to heal the deepest wounds.

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    14. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi - ₹479

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    We often liken our doctors to gods, especially when we most need them. When they are our only hope, we hope and pray that they can do that extra bit that'll save our loved ones from pain and death. However what happens when it's the doctor who is suffering? When Kalanithi is diagnosed with lung cancer he began to reflect on his medical career and the doctor-patient relationship. While the life fades out of him bit by bit he sees new life come into the world in the form of his son. In this inspiring memoir, he tells readers about his years in training and everything he learnt about mortality and the fickle nature of our lives.

    Buy it here.