If you need a brand new perspective or are just looking for a good book to sink your teeth into, these memoirs penned by incredible female authors will definitely do the trick!
Real stories by authors you shouldn’t miss
The Glass Castle
by Jeannette Walls
This memoir was published in 2005 and spent the subsequent five years on the New York Times Best Seller List — that’s how great this book is. Written from the author’s perspective, the book recounts Walls’ rather unconventional childhood with her offbeat family, dealing with instability, prejudice, alcoholism and extreme poverty. This memoir reminds us of the power of human resilience, adaptability and the strength of family bonds. It’s a great albeit quick read, and we highly recommend it.
Reading Lolita in Tehran
by Azar Nafisi
This is a splendid 2003 memoir, which contrasts our comfortable lives in North America with life in Iran three decades ago. The book follows Nafisi through the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq war as she attempts to maintain her freedom of expression as a professor in a strict Muslim society and broaden the minds of her female students in her book club. The story runs parallel to the Western texts Nafisi studies with her students in the book club. It’s beautifully written and a must-read for any Western reader, who might take some of our literature for granted.
Once Upon A Secret
by Mimi Alford
The full title of the memoir is Once Upon a Secret: My Affair with President John F. Kennedy and Its Aftermath (published in 2012), which gives you a better idea about the book’s content. It is a bit of a button-pusher, and if you’re a fan of John F. Kennedy, you might not want to know what it’s about. Alford penned the memoir to reveal the story of her affair with the late U.S. president when she was a 19-year-old intern at the White House from 1962 to 1963. She describes her unequal relationship with Kennedy, how she lost her virginity to him (just four days into her internship!) and the effect it had on her subsequent relationships. This memoir definitely gives you a different perspective on the famed and idolized 35th president of the United States — he wasn’t perfect. This is a must-read, for sure!
by Diablo Cody
Before the Juno fame, Diablo Cody made ends meet for a year as a stripper and chronicled her life on her very own blog. She then turned her blog content into this memoir, and it is definitely worth a read. Cody’s witty writing and shrewd observations of the strip club industry make this book stand out from the rest. Plus, who doesn’t love Diablo Cody? So if you’re looking for an interesting read that’s a little different from your regular run-of-the-mill memoirs, this is it!
The Story Of Mary MacLane
by Mary MacLane
This is an unusual memoir, but it’s a great read nonetheless. Published in 1902, when MacLane was only 19 years old, it created quite a riot in the United States at the time. MacLane wrote in a very earnest, open and rather sensual manner about her views of sexuality (like engaging in sexual activities with other women) and society at the time — unconventional and scandalous at the turn of the century. While MacLane is mostly forgotten now, this memoir paved the way for the subsequent century of female writers. Give this one a try!
by Tina Fey
Just to prove that memoirs don’t always have to be serious, Tina Fey brings us Bossypants! The memoir recounts Fey’s rise to fame as a writer on Saturday Night Live and the birth of 30 Rock. The book is easy to read, full of photos and is absolutely hilarious — to the point of rolling on the floor in stitches. So if you’re not a big fan of memoirs or are just easing yourself into the genre, give this one a go!