The Desert and the Sea: 977 Days Captive on the Somali Pirate Coast (PDF) is a magnificent memoir/reportage by Michael Scott Moore.
In January 2012, having covered a Somali pirate trial in Hamburg for Spiegel Online International—and funded by a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting—Michael Scott Moore traveled to the Horn of Africa to write about piracy and ways to end it. In a terrible twist of fate, Moore himself was kidnapped and subsequently held captive by Somali pirates…Caught between Muslim pirates, the looming threat of Al-Shabaab, and the rise of ISIS, Moore observes the worlds that surrounded him—the economics and history of piracy; the effects of post-colonialism; the politics of hostage negotiation and ransom; while also conjuring the various faces of Islam—and places his ordeal in the context of the larger political and historical issues.
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First released in 2012, Elizabeth the Queen by Sally Bedell Smith (subtitled The Life of a Modern Monarch) is a brilliant biography of one of the most important figures in history, Queen Elizabeth II. In 1962, Elizabeth Alexandra Mary was crowned the Queen of the United Kingdom (and also Canada, Australia, and New Zeeland). It was an immense responsibility for a 25-year-old woman who also had to raise her children.
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The Motorcycle Diaries by Ernesto Che Guevara (subtitled Notes on a Latin American Journey) is a monumental memoir by the iconic and legendary Cuban revolutionary figure. The book captures 23-year-old Che Guevara’s experience when he went in an enlightening motorbike adventure out of his home country, Argentina. He explored places in South America where he witnessed injustice and exploitation on the people. This revelation then inspired the young physician to dedicate himself in the Cuban revolution.
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The Autobiography of Malcolm X as Told to Alex Haley is a biography of one of the most influential civil rights activist in 60’s America. The book was written based on interviews that took place between 1963 and 1965. Besides Malcolm X’s life history, the biography also elaborates on his spiritual journey and his black pride philosophy and nationalism.
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