Women’s History Month: a reading list

I’m sure most of you have seen that March is Women’s History Month. I’ve always tried to read lots of books by women writers, but it seems like I’ve had a really good run of books in 2017! Anyway, here are some of the books that I’ve received recently by women writers!

Dear Ijeawele: A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

A few years ago, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie received a letter from a dear friend from childhood, asking her how to raise her baby girl as a feminist. Dear Ijeawele is Adichie’s letter of response.

Here are fifteen invaluable suggestions–compelling, direct, wryly funny, and perceptive–for how to empower a daughter to become a strong, independent woman. From encouraging her to choose a helicopter, and not only a doll, as a toy if she so desires; having open conversations with her about clothes, makeup, and sexuality; debunking the myth that women are somehow biologically arranged to be in the kitchen making dinner, and that men can “allow” women to have full careers, Dear Ijeawele goes right to the heart of sexual politics in the twenty-first century. It will start a new and urgently needed conversation about what it really means to be a woman today.

Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood

When Felix is deposed as artistic director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival by his devious assistant and longtime enemy, his production of The Tempest is canceled and he is heartbroken. Reduced to a life of exile in rural southern Ontario—accompanied only by his fantasy daughter, Miranda, who died twelve years ago—Felix devises a plan for retribution.

Eventually he takes a job teaching Literacy Through Theatre to the prisoners at the nearby Burgess Correctional Institution, and is making a modest success of it when an auspicious star places his enemies within his reach. With the help of their own interpretations, digital effects, and the talents of a professional actress and choreographer, the Burgess Correctional Players prepare to video their Tempest. Not surprisingly, they view Caliban as the character with whom they have the most in common. However, Felix has another twist in mind, and his enemies are about to find themselves taking part in an interactive and illusion-ridden version of The Tempest that will change their lives forever. But how will Felix deal with his invisible Miranda’s decision to take a part in the play?

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.


Vibrator Nation by Lynn Comella

In the 1970s a group of pioneering feminist entrepreneurs launched a movement that ultimately changed the way sex was talked about, had, and enjoyed. Boldly reimagining who sex shops were for and the kinds of spaces they could be, these entrepreneurs opened sex-toy stores like Eve’s Garden, Good Vibrations, and Babeland not just as commercial enterprises, but to provide educational and community resources as well. In Vibrator Nation Lynn Comella tells the fascinating history of how these stores raised sexual consciousness, redefined the adult industry, and changed women’s lives. Comella describes a world where sex-positive retailers double as social activists, where products are framed as tools of liberation, and where consumers are willing to pay for the promise of better living—one conversation, vibrator, and orgasm at a time.

Dreadnought by April Daniels

Until Dreadnought fell out of the sky and died right in front of her, Danny was trying to keep people from finding out she’s transgender. But before he expired, Dreadnought passed his mantle to her, and those secondhand superpowers transformed Danny’s body into what she’s always thought it should be. Now there’s no hiding that she’s a girl.

It should be the happiest time of her life, but Danny’s first weeks finally living in a body that fits her are more difficult and complicated than she could have imagined. Between her father’s dangerous obsession with “curing” her girlhood, her best friend suddenly acting like he’s entitled to date her, and her fellow superheroes arguing over her place in their ranks, Danny feels like she’s in over her head.

She doesn’t have much time to adjust. Dreadnought’s murderer—a cyborg named Utopia—still haunts the streets of New Port City, threatening destruction. If Danny can’t sort through the confusion of coming out, master her powers, and stop Utopia in time, humanity faces extinction.

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.

Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Reese Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.

What books by women have you read or purchased recently? I’m always looking for recs!

NB: I’m using Amazon Affiliate links in this post. 

18 thoughts on “Women’s History Month: a reading list

    1. whatthelog says:

      Yeah, I’m definitely going to try and read it soon – it is really small, so there’s no excuse! It is interesting that this came out shortly before she put her foot in it on trans issues though…I’ve kinda got mixed feelings about her now.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ravenclaw Book Club says:

        Yeah I heard about that. 😩 I still think she’s a brilliant writer who talks about important things so I will keep reading her books. Hopefully she will learn and change her mind!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Huntress of Diverse Books says:

    I’m so excited about reading The Upside of Unrequited! And everyone is saying how amazing Queens of Geek are.

    I just finished City of Strife and it’s amazing. There a two very fascinating women in that series and I cannot wait to see​ how their stories are developed in book two.


      1. Huntress of Diverse Books says:

        Claudie Arsenault. It’s an indie published story but I swear it’s one of the best fantasies with political intrigue that I’ve read in a long time. Different perspectives, fascinating – not all goody-two-shoes – characters, and doesn’t focus on diversity. No tokenism. I think this book should be promoted much more than it is.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. whatthelog says:

      Ofc, you have the best recs! And yeah, unfortunately I bought the Adichie the day before she started spouting transphobic nonsense. If I had known I would have waited for someone else to review it and see if anything like that was in this book.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. ahitsdina says:

    I’m waiting for my own copy of The Upside of Unrequited (I always mess up the title. Oh, the shame). And, when I do receive this in the mail, I will read it and fangirl with you. It’s going to be great.


  3. Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku says:

    What a great list! These are all on my TBR somewhere– though some, like Dreadnaught and Dear Ijeawele are much higher than others.

    Lately, I’ve been really into N.K. Jemisin’s works. I love her Inheritence trilogy (starting with The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms) and I only this month read The Fifth Season. Great fantasy and sci-fi respectively. I also read Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti which I adored even more than Akata Witch.

    For Women’s History Month I always try to read a biography or autobiography. While I didn’t finish it this month, I am currently reading Anne Frank’s Diay of a Young Girl.

    So many great authors, so little time.


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