My Top Girl Power Reads

Sunday 8 March 2020

Like many people, I have loved reading from an extremely young age. 
As an avid reader, I try my best to sample some of every genre, whether that be something I have historically liked or disliked. I always try my best to finish a book and to not put it down, no matter how much the novel is frustrating or boring me. 

Recently, I have been discovering the feminist genre of book. Now, I am not talking about academic, feminist writing. I am not even talking about books that you could really put in the bibliography of your dissertation. I am talking about the books which made me cry, laugh and think. 

Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine by Gail Honeyman.

Whether or not this book is 'feminist' is up for debate. However, what is not disputable is how empowering this book is.
Eleanor is an awkward, rather misjudged character who wants a simple life. Whilst she is struggling with past traumas which becomes apparent later on in the novel, she tries her best to create a structured routine around her life which will offer feelings of safety and stability. 

What is so abundantly clear is that Eleanor is unhappy. Whether she can comprehend that her actions are a survival mechanism, she is not really living a happy life. It isn't until she makes friends with an unassuming male co-worker, that her life changes for the better.

I loved this book and I actually wrote a full, separate review on it, which you can find here. 
What I found empowering was Eleanor's struggle. Whilst the events that took place in Eleanor's life is fictitious, the relationship between herself and her mother is something that many people feel and can relate too. 

Eleanor grows, matures and becomes a wildly happier person. She learns to accept herself, her flaws and cut ties with toxic relationships in order to make way for new, healthier ones. 

Not That Kind of Girl - Lena Dunham.

This book is a common addition to anyone's 'Girl Power' list of books. Whilst this read acts as a description of Lena's life, it is a lot more than that. I finished this book quickly - in a matter of days in fact and it had me in genuine tears, both laughter and crying. 

Again, don't be put off by the autobiographical nature of this book. If you have no interest in learning about Lena Dunham, that is fine and it will not, repeat will not, having any impact on your enjoyment of this novel.  

You will recognise your younger, weirder self in this story. The journey that it took for you to become the strong person you are today is made up of weird MSN messages, the ex-boyfriends and your multiple personalities you tried on before realising that being you was for the best. 

5/5 would recommend. 

Women Talking by Miriam Toews.

Women Talking is a bit of a different read and unlike the other books in this list, it is a reenactment of a real historical event. 
Again, hold on, you might like the sound of this.

Between 2005 and 2009, in a remote religious Mennonite colony, over a hundred girls and women were knocked unconscious and raped, often repeatedly, by what many thoughts were ghosts or demons, as a punishment for their sins. Spoiler, it wasn't. It was the men of the colony. 

Now, the women had to make one of two choices. They could stay but demand equal respect between genders or they could leave, gaining freedom but leaving behind their brothers, husbands and everything they had known. 

This event really happened, however, this book is the imagined response of these real-life events. What would the women say, think, act like with these happenings? 

I really enjoyed this book. It was repetitive, sure, but it was well worth the read. I learnt so much from it, historically speaking and I enjoyed the overall story of women coming together and demanding more their society. 

The F Word - Lily Pebbles 

Female friendship is a hard, uncharted territory. The media constantly pins women against each other, making us feel like we are enemies. That one woman gain is another women's lose. This is, in my opinion, counterproductive in a progressive society and above everything, a medieval way to look at such important relationships.

I don't know where I'd be right now if it wasn't for the great ladies that have helped me along my journey. The F Word by Lily Pebbles helps you to remember that whilst friendships, especially friendships with other women, are hard, they are worth it and you should never take them for granted. 

This read is short, fun and definitely worth it if you need a little reminder of who you are!

Just because I didn't mention them, doesn't mean I don't recommend them! Honestly, we would be here all day if I recommended all the books that empowered me. 

1. Bossypants by Tina Fey.
2. The Handmaid's Tale by Margret Atwood.
3. Yes Please by Amy Poehler. 
4. Animal by Sara Pascoe.
5. Literally anything by Angela Carter. 

Thanks for reading, see ya soon. 

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Shop this post:

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine: Gail Honeyman

Not That Kind of Girl: Lena Dunham

The F Word: Lily Pebbles

Women Talking : Miriam Toews

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Join the conversation!

  1. Oh great post, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine has been on my TBR for so long, your post might have just bumped it up!

    Lainey (:

  2. “Women Talking” will definitely be an interesting read. I like how you explained it. Plus it is non-fiction, women have been through a lot. Thank you for this great post

    1. They have! Thank you for your wonderful comment! x

  3. I really like this, I am always looking for new books to read

  4. Definitely some here I need to check out! THanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you for commenting! You definitely should!

  5. I will definitely be putting these recommendations on my reading list, they sound great! A very well written post x

  6. The F word sounds good I may have to read it buttt I like this post 🌟

  7. Book #1 sounds like a really great read. I am part of a book club and I think it might be a good option for us to consider. Thanks for sharing!

  8. This made me realize that I really need to read more books...

    1. Reading is so good for your brain! It's great before bed, it really helps power you down ready for bed! Thanks for your wonderful comment

  9. So far, I've only read Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine on this list and I absolutely adored it! I'll definitely check out the others, thanks for the recommendation :)

    1. That's okay Nele! It's become one of my favourite books! Thanks for your comment x

  10. I only know Eleanor Oliphant but like you I LOVED that book, it was one of my faves of 2019. Thank you for the other recommendations though!

    1. If you loved that, you will definitely love the others! Thank you for commenting x

  11. excellent post!

  12. They sounds like great reads

  13. I haven't heard of any of those books but they all sound like books I would enjoy. Thank you for the recommendations


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