7 Autobiographies That Will Change Your Life

Autobiographies are my favourite genre of books because you get a first-hand account of someone else’s life experiences. There would be core similarities and striking dissimilarities. Funny anecdotes and tragic experiences. They would leave you thinking about your own life and help you learn a lesson or two. 

Below are some of the fascinating autobiographies I’ve read in recent times. Each is a unique story wrapped in an excellent writing style.

The Sun Does Shine (Anthony Ray Hinton) 

This is one of those autobiographies that will make you stop and think about Black lives. Imagine being on death row for thirty years, for a crime that you did not commit. Anthony Ray Hinton was wrongly prosecuted for multiple murders in a system that never bothered to listen to him, due to his skin colour. His autobiography is a powerful story of love and justice, and a testimonial to the powerful saying “Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things”. It’s an inspiring story written in a simple, yet heart-wrenching style.

Buy it here.

Born a Crime (Trevor Noah) 

US Daily show host and comedian Trevor Noah was born to a white father and a black mother, making his birth a crime during the Apartheid time period. His story is mostly about his mother – a badass woman who decided to face everything that life has thrown at her, to raise her “personification of crime”, her son, into one of the most successful men in comedy today. If you think a book can not be funny and heart-breaking at the same time, this book would leave you surprised.

Buy it here.


Open (Andre Agassi)

The autobiography of the tennis superstar Agassi is not the typical success story of how he became a legend in court. But rather that of a totally confused and rebellious bald guy who was forced to play tennis by his father. His love-hate relationship with tennis and his various mental conflicts during his stardom are well expressed in this book. It’s a book that will grip you, regardless of whether you follow the sport or not.

Buy it here.

Shoe Dog (Phil Knight)

If you are a fan of running, entrepreneurship or interesting memoirs, this book is the holy grail of inspiring autobiographies. The story of the greatest sports brand in the world, Nike, and its founder Phil Knight is nothing short of fascinating. In simple, humorous and truthful language, Knight takes us through his ups and downs. Or should I say, the “swoosh” of his life? 

Buy it here.

Becoming (Michelle Obama) 

This famous autobiography from the former First lady of US has been one of the best selling books in recent times for a reason – it gives a sneak-peek into the life inside the White House; a life we all are curious about. She also talks about her early childhood, her relationships, their marriage, and her tenure as the First Lady. This book is warm, wise and witty, and will leave you inspired.

Buy it here.

When Breath Becomes Air (Paul Kalanithi) 

“What makes one’s life worth living?” – This is the question that a 36-year-old cancer patient tries to answer through in this autobiography. Paul was treating patients as a neurosurgeon until he was diagnosed with stage IV cancer, making him a patient struggling for his own life. The book is a heart-warming reflection of life and its meaning, from a patient in his deathbed. 

Buy it here.


That Will Never Work (Marc Randolph)

The story of how Netflix grew from a brick and mortar video store to a company recognized across the globe makes it an interesting read for everyone who fancies business books. It is a humbling account of how the company struggled hard and fought the battle to climb the ladder in a fast-growing entertainment business industry. 

Buy it here.

Have you read any of these? Are there others that should be on this list? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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