Here’s to all of us getting through the rest of winter as gracefully and painlessly as possible. I’m confident that the 47 books on this list will help.
It was 2018. More women than ever were running for office; the Me Too and Time’s Up movements were bringing brave new voices to the forefront; more previously apolitical women were recognizing their agency and their value. I didn’t set out to write a “political” book but I did, certainly, understand that so much of what women do right now can make a statement and pave the way for other women, even in small ways, even with quiet steps.
You’ve read all the 2021 most anticipated book lists? Well, now see what other books are out there, you know, for the rest of us.
I pride myself on finding and highlighting some of the books you haven’t seen on other lists because they are from indie publishers, debut authors or historically excluded writers.
Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman in America to receive a medical degree, in 1849. Becoming a doctor as qualified as any man was a noble ideological quest.
“The idea of winning a doctor’s degree gradually assumed the aspect of a great moral struggle,” she wrote, “and the moral fight possessed immense attraction for me.”
In Cailtin Moran’s latest book, “More Than a Woman,” the author uses her signature chatting-with-a-friend-over-tea style to draw the reader in and unpack topics like married sex, being a mom to teenage girls and the need for a women’s union. Moran spoke with Ms. reporter Anne McCarthy from her home in England this autumn.
No work of mine has so completely rolled together my passions—the history, untold stories and style of the 1940s, hardboiled fiction, strong women of grit and adaptability, and the impacts of conflict on everyday people—as this novel, ‘The War Widow.’
Dhonielle Clayton is at the center of the push for increased racial diversity in children’s and YA fantasy books.
“As a child, a lot of the books I loved reading had no one who looked like me as a lead in those stories. I wanted to change that. As a librarian in Harlem, I was struck by how few books we had that reflected our students. I was a teacher and lover of books; I wanted kids of color to have the chance to go to magic schools and save the world.”
The new women of Congress, many of them firsts from their racial or ethnic group to serve in their district—or, as in Rep. Sharice Davids’s case, the nation—undertook their roles beyond lawmaking.
(The following is an excerpt from Chapter 8 of “The Firsts: The Inside Story of the Women Reshaping Congress,” by New York Times reporter Jennifer Steinhauer.)
In her poem, titled “The Hill We Climb,” Amanda Gorman struck a chord of unity, bridging pain of the past with hope for a better future.
Interdisciplinary artist and set designer Ola Ronke Akinmowo hosted her first popup library on a stoop in Bed-Stuy in 2015 with about 100 books. Since then, the Free Black Women’s Library has accumulated over 3,000 books written by Black women of every genre.