There is a new book, written by Alexis Coe, that is defying the rules of what makes up a normal biography. Her new book, You Never Forget Your First, was released today and starts off with several listicles about the first United States President, then moves on to more traditional composition.
image via penguin random house
Coe’s book has some infographics scattered throughout her book, and she states in an interview with Smithsonian Magazine, “I make these lists for myself, and it’s sort of like being in the archives. I wish readers could see everything, and they don’t get to. This is an offering from me to the reader, telling them, “You know how to read this book. You have everything you need to feel as though you’re an expert.”
The infographics in her biography of George Washington are really engaging, to the point where I myself got caught reading the sample of her new book. The facts serve to make the book a little more fun for the reader (history books can usually be dry). Coe talks more about this: “I want this book to be a sort of equalizer and to be fun. History is fun, even when it’s a difficult subject matter.”
Coe mentions that her book is seen as a little disrespectful for George Washington due to its style, but she of course has an answer for that. In the interview, she says how George Washington’s actions clearly show his power and masculinity, and that many authors who write about his life tend to overwrite about this. “I don’t feel a need to protect Washington,” Coe states, “he doesn’t need me to come to his defense… He’s everywhere. He’s just fine.”
Coe also says that her biography of George Washington serves to change the way people write about him. She wants authors to feel a little more freedom when writing about him, and she hopes her book can inspire others to follow in her footsteps.
image via pittsburgh post gazette
The book itself follows an informal style that separates it from other biographical books. This alone makes me more eager to read a book like Alexis Coe’s. If you’re interested, do check out the sample linked above, and consider getting a copy of the book!
featured image via the daily beast
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