After joining my local library and becoming more active on ‘Goodreads’ I’ve been more enthusiastic with escaping into new stories or learning about people who have lived extraordinary lives. For International Women’s Day 2020 I thought why not show you some of the funny, chaotic and inspiring books I’ve been reading lately from female authors.
- Unfollow by Megan Phelps-Roper
If you’re a fan of Louis Theroux documentaries, such as ‘The Most Hated Family in America,’ you would be familiar with Megan Phelps-Roper. Megan grew up in the Phelps-Roper family, infamously most of the members to make up the Westboro Baptist Church. This book is an honest portrayal of Megan’s family, their beliefs and reasoning behind her involvement in controversial actions such as protesting funerals and saying hateful things online. What it does demonstrate to me is the power of patience and compassion, which is what Megan received from past counter-protestors once she chose to leave the church. ‘Wow’ was my initial afterthought.
- How to Walk Away by Katherine Center
Everyone loves an easy romance read and Katherine Center provides that, but with flawed characters. There’s something nice about reading about two flawed humans helping each other build up their lives, not as a replacement of their old ones but as something new, and then finding love with each other instead of the love healing both of them.
- Things you Save in a Fire by Katherine Center
I have clearly found an author I like. This book is about a boss ass bitch who deals with being in a male-dominated industry (Fire service), moves to a new station as the first female firefighter they’ve had and through more patience and determination than I have, slowly changes the culture of the whole station. A good feminist fiction read.
- She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement by Jodi Kantor & Megan Twohey
As interesting as it is frustrating. The process to expose the many predatory actions of Harvey Weinstein was exhaustive and faced many hurdles, but the detailed explanation of every step is worth the read, particularly due to the recent conviction of Weinstein (even if it were for a very small percentage of his accused crimes).
- Truth or Bed by Penny Reid
Penny Reid is a fantastic romance writer, and Truth or Beard is the first book in a long series about the Weinstein Brothers (and their sister). Each book is about a new brother and their romantic life but also lets you catch up on previous couples. It’s just a nice heartwarming read with some strange and complex characters.
- What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding by Kristin Newman
As someone who is regularly inundated with life milestones (pregnancy, marriage, houses) on social media while I’ve chosen to spend most of my money and energy on travel and experiences, this was a great book to justify my actions. I’ve always thought about whether I would still be wanting to live my lifestyle in my thirties and beyond, and Kristin Newman proves that if you make this choice, your life will be anything but boring with crazy experiences and passionate relationships.
- Educated by Tara Westover
As a teacher I believe education plays such an important role in the choices people will make throughout their lives. This autobiography is a big read but proves that education can set someone free.
- After You by Jojo Moyes
The follow on from ‘Me Before You’ shows the main character Lou struggling to move on from Will, experiencing some setbacks but how she pulls herself and others up is a really lovely read. There is a third book as well, ‘Still me’ which I’m working my way up to when tissues are in stock again at my local supermarket (Aussie readers will understand).
- Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
I’m a big fan of quirky characters and Eleanor Oliphant definitely fits that description. On top of her strange social interactions and interests, Eleanor is complex, has experienced significant trauma and abuse and through a true friend she is able to slowly work through this and no longer be a slave to it. There are some heavy chapters so bring some tissues.
- The Anti-Cool Girl by Rosie Waterland
If you’re a big fan of Australian Bachelor recaps, you’re in the right place, with the original popular ones written by the very funny Rosie Waterland. Rosie gives an honest account of her upbringing, personal flaws and struggles with her signature humour.