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8 Books Every Woman Should Read

And what makes them both beautiful and necessary.

BY Beryl Karimi-La Patrona

Jan 04, 2023, 06:54 PM

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Books are necessary for growth and are the greatest teachers you will encounter in life.

Here is a list of books written by women that should be on your reading list this year.

The Joys Of Motherhood, Buchi Emecheta

This book of fiction gets into the nitty gritty of what it means to be a mother. It provides a clear illustration of everything you give up as a woman to be a good mother and the sacrifices you make to try and give your children everything.

I would recommend this book to women who aren't mothers yet. Society glorifies motherhood but it often hits women hard when they realize that mothering isn't as rosy and as rewarding as it has been presented to be.

Transcendent Kingdom, Yaa Gyasi

Yaa Gyasi is a prolific writer. In this book, she paints a clear picture of what grief is like through Gifty, the protagonist of her story.

Gifty lost her brother to drug abuse when she was young and his death defined the path she took in life afterwards.

It is like meditation; sad while providing lessons. It highlights the issue of race, the alienation that people face in foreign countries, and the disconnect that children born in the Western world face when they go back home. 

It is an important read for every person who has lost someone, for every immigrant who is struggling to find their rights, and for every other person who has ever had to be a caregiver.

All About Love, Bell Hooks

We have the wrong ideas of love. We are taught to give too much, suffer for it, sacrifice needlessly for it, and to be exhausted by the duty of it all.

Bell hooks presents an alternative point of view of how love could look if the power imbalance between women and men weren't as vast as they are.

She defines for us what good love looks like in a way it isn't defined by women who have only experienced love when it's within the boundaries of oppression.

I recommend this book to every woman, especially growing women entering the whirlwind dating world. It will equip you with the knowledge you need to navigate love.

In The Love Affairs Of Nathaniel P, Adelle Waldman 

Nathaniel Piven, the protagonist of the story, is a writer. This story is not about his journey as a writer. It is based on his relationships with women and his clear analysis of them.

It is an important read for women because it gives us a clear understanding of what goes through a man's mind when he is in a relationship with a woman.

Questions For Ada, Ijeoma Umebinyuo

This is the most impactful collection of poetry I have ever read and what makes it better is the fact that it is written in the simple language that you wish came with all poetry books.

Ijeoma understands the lived realities of the African woman, their hurts, their pains, how society fails us, and the different ways in which we fail ourselves, as we journey through the murky waters of trying to find love in men who aren't conditioned to love us.

It is an important read that should be found on every woman's nightstand. I might be biased but I know I am right when I say it should be a Bible for women.

Nectar, Upile Chisala 

Upile writes with a gentleness that is both touching and healing. She is relatable to every woman who has ever read her while navigating her heartbreak. Even though her work is healing, it also affirms and teaches you how to stand up for what you deserve.

I would recommend this to every young woman, especially those navigating their first heartbreak. You will feel seen and learn incredible lessons along the way.

Bad Love, Maame Blue

The protagonist of this book is a teenager growing up in a first-changing world that doesn't allow her the space to breathe. She experiences the turmoil of falling in love for the first time with a boy who is not emotionally available while experiencing the pitfalls of losing the solidity of having a family due to her parent's separation.

I would recommend this book for young adults who feel that the world is ending because of that tragic love story that we all experience when we are young. 

Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


This was one of the hardest books to pick because Adichie is an incredible writer. All her books are important and it is hard to choose what you should recommend when you feel it's important for every woman and girl to read all her books.

I particularly picked this book because it is the introduction to feminism that every girl needs. Moreover, it is also a guide to motherhood that would be impactful to any young woman raising a daughter.

Through shared life experiences, Adichie gives us important lessons on how you can raise a feminist daughter while dissecting the nature of the patriarchal society we live in.

It is also the perfect starting point for women who did not have any feminist mothering when they were growing up.
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