Top Ten Tuesday
hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
Top Ten Books Every Girl/Woman Should Read
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
Why: It deals with identity, mean girls, growing up, and treating people the right way. I read it as an adult, but it made me think about how awful I was in high school to people when maybe I shouldn’t have been.
2. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Why: It’s a powerful book about speaking up, sexual assault, and coming of age.
3. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
Why: It’s THE cautionary tale: A dystopia that oppresses women.
4. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
Why: This book really spoke to me as a teen/young adult. It deals with depression, but it also dealt with more. It’s about being a woman and wanting a life, not really knowing what it is that you want out of life, and being trapped between being successful or having a family and what it all means.
5. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
Why: Regardless of how crazy the town thought she was, the main character fell in love with a man who was good to her after spending her life with a man who looked good on the outside and was NOT good to her. It’s about following your dreams, regardless of how outsiders might perceive your sanity. It’s the ultimate “You Go Girl” romance, but it’s also a tragic and moving story.
6. The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
Why: It’s a novel set in a time period when women didn’t speak out, couldn’t vote, and weren’t supposed to have dreams. The rebellious spirit was abnormal and it must be “cured” for a woman to be normal. It’s a powerful “horror” novel.
7. A fantasy novel with a strong female protagonist, but this list would surpass 10 if I listed them all. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson, Cinder by Marissa Meyer, etc.
Why: It seems common nowadays for fantasy to involve a kick ass heroine, but that wasn’t the case not too long ago. I cherish the books that feature strong women who don’t need their male heroes to save them. They save themselves. But also, they are still allowed to make mistakes, fall in love, and need help.
8. A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle
Why: Maybe this could be categorized in the above section, but I chose to separate it. I read this series as a kid. I was a kid who didn’t fit in, who wore clothes that didn’t fit quite right, who read books instead of made friends, and this book spoke to me in a way that I can’t even really describe. Meg was the main character, she wasn’t all that special either, but she did incredible things for her family. It’s a must read for any misfit kid who also has any interest in scifi/fantasy.
9. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Why: This book is a great psychological contemporary thriller with a killer twist. But that’s not why it’s on this list. It’s here because it talks about what so many women can relate to. Fitting in, trying to be cool, trying to not nag your boyfriend or husband or whoever because that’s not the sophisticated or laid back girl persona you should have. Can we be ourselves when our outbursts are considered hysterical? It brings up some pretty valid points, even though a psychotic character makes them.
10. White Oleander by Janet Fitch
Why: This book features various relationships with different kinds of women. Astrid grew up with her mother, but then she was sent into foster care when her mom murdered someone. Her mother used her beauty as a weapon, but that’s not what Astrid idolized. Still, her own beauty became a problem and it effected her ability to grow in the foster care system. It’s all about the struggles of being a girl. It’s also about growing up, needing a mom, and loving people.