This Women’s History Month, check out these books that examine what it means to be female through different lived experiences.
In a society that values women oftentimes for the way that they fit into the lives of the men surrounding them, books where women and their problems, other than which hunky guy to choose, are important. These four books don’t end with a prince charming, but a woman’s recognition of the world for the messy way that it is and her inherent power to change it.
This book is aimed at younger audiences, but anyone can learn something from the main character’s navigation through a weight-obsessed world and how that has impacted her mental health and view of her own self-worth. Lisa Fipps’ book demonstrates the way in which women can take back power from the beauty standards that serve to disempower them.
For me, it was Starfish by Lisa Fipps. A glimpse into my own life as a kid and the fatphobia that still rules so many of us.
— Cait is meeting her Goodreads Challenge goal (@JustTeachingELA) September 16, 2022
Her Body and Other Parties
While it’s not exactly a novel, Carmen Maria Machado’s compilation of short fiction stories explores the relationship that women have with their bodies. From an exploration of sexuality to self-image to oppressive power dynamics, there is a story for almost every woman in this book. Even if you don’t pick up the whole compilation, definitely check out the short story “The Husband Stitch,” which was nominated for the Nebula Award for Best Novelette.
just finished reading her body and other parties. what a great collection of stories…whew
— ash / ronan 🌙 (@lesbianryuko) February 25, 2023
Thirty Things I Love About Myself
Highlighting the Indian-American female experience, Thirty Things I Love About Myself follows a soon-to-be thirty-year-old through a year of self-discovery, self-love, and self-confidence. Incorporating themes of manifestation, astrology, self-care, and mental health awareness, Radhika Sanghani crafts a pseudo how-to guide to figuring out how to love yourself for who you truly are.
Self-love time? As in @radhikasanghani‘s Thirty Things I Love About Myself – which I go on about, but it introduced me to a lot of things, including this idea. I’d date myself at @boisdaleCW or @OrpingtonGPO. Espresso martinis a must.
— InTunePR (@InTunePR) November 6, 2022
My Year of Rest and Relaxation
Set in New York City in 2000 and 2001, the book spotlights the impacts mental illness can have on an individual and how socioeconomic status or class can impact whether or not it is acceptable for an individual to not seek out treatment. With an unlikeable main character, Ottessa Moshfegh invites readers into the ugliness of mental health, especially when it comes to isolation and its impact on relationships.
That girl from My Year of Rest and Relaxation has some GREAT ideas, and we should stop pretending otherwise. We would all be happier if we had a Year of Rest and Relaxation
— Arsh Kabra (@arshkabra) February 27, 2023