Must-read books for and about women, including thought-provoking novels, business books, memoirs and feminist histories.
I called my cousin into the kitchen. She’d been staying with me while working to establish herself in the entertainment arts industry. I knew she’d understand chasing dreams that seem out of reach to most people.
Mothers and Daughters: Feminism in Contemporary Literature
The relationship between a mother and daughter can be more complicated than one can assume it to be. From the moment a child enters the world, the first person she makes contact with is her mother. The bond between mother and child then continues to strengthen while experiencing every milestone in both their lives, this evolution also serves as a test of how strong the bond is between them. Taking a closer look into the bond between a mother and her daughter, from a contemporary feminist approach, one might notice that the mother has high standards and expectations behind the choices that her daughter will make. The mother will even take the extra mile to ensure the daughter makes the right choices in her life from adolescence to rising adulthood. The perception of this type of relationship dynamic can be seen in two distinct contemporary literary works. Orange Mint and Honey by Carleen Brice tells the story of a mother and daughter whose differences push them to realize that they are not as different as they think.
She chose vengeance and anger: Sex shaming and internalized misogyny in the House of Night [Part 2]
As the title suggests, this is a continuation of a previous essay - Part honey, part whore: Slut shaming and internalized misogyny in the House of Night. I strongly advise reading that essay before this one, as it lends some important context and background information.
Part honey, part whore: Sex shaming and internalized misogyny in the House of Night
Before we start, I want to preface this by establishing some out-of-text information about the series. House of Night is credited to two authors, P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast, a mother-daughter team. However, in several interviews and Q&As, they have stressed that they did not actually co-author the series. Instead, P.C. Cast wrote the books and Kristin Cast helped her first as a teen voice editor, and then later as a frontline editor. (Cast and Cast 2017:277; Cast and Cast 2018:332; Cast and Cast 2020:358, 363; Rought 2020; Fricot 2019) Thus, Kristin Cast is not an author or co-author on the series. However, for the sake of simplicity and abiding official citations for the series, I will be referring to the authorship of this series as though it were a joint effort.
Esperanza Rising- Literature review Esperanza Rising transports us into the lives of Mexican-American immigrant agriculture workers and we get to see the kind of extreme hardships they had to suffer during the 1930’s depression era in the United States. What makes this novel so important is the representation of strong, independent, minority women and girls who were able to overcome the challenges of systemic racism, extreme poverty and all while living under the rule of a patriarchal society. Children, especially young girls, need to have access to more powerful stories like Esperanza Rising which provides worthy role models and important messages like never being afraid to start over. Books that defy gender stereotypes and teach young girls that they have more choices than they realized, and that they might be more powerful and capable than they could have ever imagined are critical in the fostering of the future female leaders of the United States, and the world; books are powerful. Nelson Mandela asserts, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” (Duncan, A., 2013).
I used to be a solid "fiction only" reader. Sometimes, though, an amazing non-fiction book slams me upside the head and demands that I pay attention! Tembi Locke wrote one of these books.
The Murder of Myrtle
I read the novel "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald when I was a teen in high school. Actually, I cheated. I read the Cliff Notes and watched the movie. The poetry of the book was nice, but I just wanted to know the story so I could get through my assignments and be done with it. I did not like the novel at all when I first learned of it. I hated Daisy right away because she acted like what happened to Myrtle and Jay was no big deal, when both of their murders are really her fault. Jordan admits that she's "irresponsible" but Daisy never does. Daisy is a spoiled, worthless, emotional piece of junk who doesn't appreciate her wealth, her husband, her child, or the love of other people who were obsessed with her. F. Scott Fitzgerald actually has the nerve to end the novel with her as a Winner. If you want to see Evil Triumph over good, then by all means agree that The Great Gatsby is the Great American novel. But I disagree. As a woman and as a writer, I think The Great Gatsby is the worse piece of literature ever to be written as American fiction, and I think that women should be ashamed of themselves if they think it's any good. It right up there with the trash of "50 Shades of Gray". Please women! Use your brain! Do you want to end up dead like Myrtle or miserable like Daisy? That's what Fitzgerald promises you.
A Thousand Splendid Suns By Khaled Hosseini – Book Summary: A Story Of Female Friendship And Sacrifice
If you are looking for a book that makes you wail, A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini is it. I had heard many things about Hosseini’s first novel, The Kite Runner, but I wanted to begin with his second one. And I didn’t regret it at all.
3 Obscure Modern Classic Novels by Women
Perhaps you have noticed the new style of article I am testing out here. Lists of three. I began with lists of five, but I felt that I was going on for way too long. Three seems like a nice way to test if you want to read more into a certain topic, doesn't it?
3 Great Female Characters from Obscure Modern Classics
Women have always been sidelined in modern literature - especially that of the 20th century which actually seems more male-dominated than you actually think it was. From the poets of the 1930s writing about the horrors of the Great Depression to the writers of the experience of the Second World War. It has all been orientated on the male experience. There have been, in between, the experiences of women. But we do have to go hunting for them.
3 Obscure Classic Novels About Women
Rebellious, outspoken women were not a normal part of the culture during the previous centuries. From Shakespeare's romantic interests of Juliet, Cressida, Hermia and others, there have been obedient and quiet women. But famously, Shakespeare's more complex characters have also been women, in the forms of the violent Lady Macbeth, the outspoken Titania, the almost machiavellian Portia and even the powerful Cleopatra.
Lucia Berlin – A Life
“The first word I spoke was Light” – Lucia Berlin, Welcome Home. Welcome Home by Lucia Berlin will stun you with its optimism and simplicity. The unfinished work by the deceased author is an autobiographical work that sparkles with buoyancy even in the face of hardship, and you’ll be warmed by the sentiment behind it. Consisting of the original unfinished work as well as photographs and letters compiled by her son, Jeff, the work is a fitting capstone tribute to this fascinating short story writer.