Are you in need of a good book to read? More titles to add to your TBR list? You’ve come to the right place!
This week, we asked our interns at NYMM about their favorite books written by women writers. Here are their answers.
Madison (Editorial): Lidia Yuknavitch’s The Chronology of Water
It’s a memoir that doesn’t read quite like a memoir and the prose is just gorgeous. She presents a really honest and flawed reflection of herself, which is refreshing to see. She also talks about eating paper a lot which is fun!
Alissa (Marketing & PR): Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar
I read it in high school and was so overwhelmed and intrigued by the honest tone of the book. I had never experienced someone discussing their mental health issues from a first-person type of perspective.
Rachel (Editorial): Ruth Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being
I first read this book in late 2016 for one of my classes, and I am so glad my prof put it on the reading list. The story follows a Japanese-American girl who is struggling with feelings of loneliness and being displaced, and the Canadian woman who finds the diary detailing the girl’s life. It is the right balance of fun and heartfelt, and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking to find comfort through fiction.
Hawyar (Web Design & Tech): Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
In this book, the author takes us through her life and what it was like for African Americans transitioning from the slave trade. It was eye-opening for me personally as I had not yet been exposed to that part of American history.
Eli (Editorial): Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah
Americanah is my favorite book because I think many different communities can empathize with the novel. The plight of the protagonist is incredibly universal, whilst also being very idiosyncratic. Likewise, it showed me a world and narrative to which I’d never been exposed to before, which I think is one of the prime successes of the story. It transcends space and distance while staying close to its’ heart, not to mention, the feminist implications and sugary prose are really special and not found in any other fiction I’ve read as of late.
Olivia (Chief of Staff): Emma Cline’s The Girls
I read this book over winter break during my first year of college and immediately connected with the main characters and the story. I didn’t become involved with a cult but certain sentiments and situations described in the book felt reminiscent of my own experiences.
One particular quote takes me right back to middle school. “That was part of being a girl—you were resigned to whatever feedback you’d get. If you got mad, you were crazy, and if you didn’t react, you were a bitch. The only thing you could do was smile from the corner they’d backed you into. Implicate yourself in the joke even if the joke was always on you.”
I definitely molded my personality around being likable and funny in a ditzy, non-threatening way. Largely, I’ve become more comfortable with myself and I feel that society does not push the accommodating smile onto women quite so much anymore. However, sometimes I still find myself slipping back into that persona when I’m nervous. Ultimately, this isn’t a comforting novel, but it did reassure me that my personality from the ages 12-15, whilst fake, was not unusual.
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