In honor of Women’s History Month, Margaret @ Weird Zeal created this amazing tag, where the goal is to celebrate amazing women in history and also some of our favorite books. It is in my plans to only read books by women this month, so I wanted a chance to gush about other titles by women I love.
- Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post.
- Link to the creator’s blog in your post
- Answer the questions below using only books written by women
- Feel free to use the same graphics
- Tag 8 others to take part in the tag
ONE. ROSA PARKS (1913-2005)
Rosa Park was a civil rights leader whose refusal to give up her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Her bravery inspired nationwide efforts to en dracial segregation. Parks was awarded the Martin Luther King Jr. Award by the NAACP, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal.
A book about a female character who doesn’t do as she’s told.
Felicity from The Lady’s Guide to Peticoats and Piracy is definitely a stubborn one. I’ve always admired Felicity for standing her ground, but reading this second book really strenghtened my feelings for her.
Felicity’s dream is to become a doctor; however, in the 1800s, women were barely allowed an education, moreover the one required to become a doctor. Felicity simply refuses to give up, though. Even though so many people tell her she can’t, she never stops fighting for her right to pursue her dreams.
TWO. ADA LOVELACE (1815-1852)
The daughter of famed poet Lord Byron, Augusta Ada Byron, Countess of Lovelace – better known as “Ada Lovelace” showed her gift for mathematics at an early age. She has been called the first computer programmer for writing an alogirthm for a computing machine in the mid-1800s.
A book with an intelligent female character
Frances from Radio Silence is an amazing character for a number of reasons, but her intelligence is a very significant trait. Frances is an overachiever at school, but that’s not without hardwork. She puts a lot of effort on keeping good grades, in hopes to get into a good school later on.
I loved, though, that the book focused on a lot more than just her intelligence. Frances was a really layered character – she was an amazing friend, with a passion for fandom and a deep confusion about her future – and reading about her was such a great experience.
THREE. QUEEN ELIZABETH I (1533-1603)
Queen Elizabeth I of England claimed the throne in 1558 at the age of 25 and held it until her death. During her reign, Elizabeth I established Protestantism in England; maintained peace inside her previously divided country; and created and environment where the arts flourished. She was sometimes called the “Virgin Queen”, as she never married.
A book about a woman in a position of power
Alright, so An Ember in the Ashes does have very powerful women in general, but I’m talking specifically about the Commander, which is probably not the nicest female character to talk about. In fact, she might be the worst.
I love to hate her character a lot. She’s very smart and seems to always be one step ahead of our protagonists, no matter what, but that’s exactly what makes her such an awesome character.
I also think it’s interesting to see a woman in a role that would be typically associated with males – not only because it is a position of power, but also because she’s merciless AF. And it’s not like women can ever be seen as ruthless, bloody and mean, right? *eyeroll*.
FOUR. VIRGINIA WOOLF (1882-1941)
Born into a privileged English household in 1882, author Virginia Woolf was raised by free-thinking parents. She began writing as a young girl and published her first novel, The Voyage Out, in 1915. She wrote modernist classics including Ms. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse and Orlando, as well as pioneering feminist works, A Room of One’s Own and Three Guineas.
A book with beautiful writing
Even though The Wicker King mostly centers around male characters, I couldn’t *not* talk about it. As soon as I heard this prompt, it was the first book that came to mind, and I think that says a lot about how the writing impacted me.
With that being said, I can still recognize that this book is not perfect and not for everyone. But it was meaningful to me for a number of reasons, and I loved how K. Ancrum shared so much with so little, as the chapters and sentences are short and simple, but still held a punch.
FIVE. JOAN OF ARC (1412-1431)
A national heroine of France, at age 18 Joan of Arc led the French army to victory over the English at Orléans. Captured a year later, Joan was burned at the stake as a heretic by the English and their French collaborators. She was canonized as a Roman Catholic saint more than 500 years later, on May 16, 1920.
A book about a female warrior
Some of these questions are quite hard for me, because I hardly ever read fantasy or anything that involves warriors or battles. I am mostly reading contemporary, and the most fighting characters do in those books is staying awake during boring lectures. (btw, #relatable).
But Rebel of the Sands, by Alwyn Hamilton is one of my favorite books of all times and I couldn’t pass the chance to gush about Amani. She’s such an amazing character and I love her a ton.
First, she’s not inherently badass, but in fact, quite reckless, who counts on luck for most things. I love how impulsive she could be and, yet, always came up with the best plans. She wasn’t perfect and definitely made mistakes, but that only made me love her even more.
SEVEN. ROSALIND FRANKLIN (1920-1958)
Rosalind Franking earned a Ph.D in physical chemistry for Cambridge University. She learned chrystallography and X-ray diffraction, techniques that she applied to DNA fibers. One of her photographs provided key insights into DNA structure. Other scientists used it as evidence to support their DNA model and took credit for the discovery.
An underappreciated book
I’d never heard of Rosalind Frankin before and it doesn’t surprise me. I’m glad we know that now and can work to properly address her discoveries.
Loving Grover Cleveland, by Rebekah Crane is quite an underrated book, in my opinion. And I enjoyed my experience with it so much. If you relate to mental ilness at all, I think you’d enjoy this one a lot, because it focuses on a number of characters, each facing a different thing.
There’s bipolar disorder rep, eating disorder rep, anxiety rep, schizophrenia rep, and while I’m obviously not able to discuss on how accurate any of these reps were, I do think they were all addressed sensetively, but also not overly done, as these characters are just teenagers after all.
It was a perfect mix of being educational, while also being real, and I loved that a lot.
EIGHT. MARSHA P. JOHNSON
Marsha P. Johnson was a transgender LBTQ rights activist and an outspoken advocate for trans people of color. Johnson spearheaded the Stonewall uprising in 1969 and along with Sylvia Rivera, she later established the Street Transgender Action Revolutionaries (STAR), a group committed to helping homeless transgender youth in New York City.
A book about LGBT+ characters
I could talk about literally so many books here, but I’ll focus in one I feel like I don’t rave enough about and that means a lot to me. Let’s Talk About Love, by Claire Kann focuses on an asexual bi-romantic black girl who finds herself falling for her co-worker, who just happens to be cutest, nicest, Japanese-American guy I’ve ever met.
This book was amazing for a number of reasons, but I have to mention Alice, our protagonist. I could relate to her so much, not only because of her sexuality, but she was also very passionate about all things Pinterest-like and my Libra self who can only think in a color-cordinated way was very pleased.
Most of all, though, I loved the friendships in here – Alice’s best friends, Franny and Ryan, gave me as much feelings as her romantic involvements, and that says *a lot*.
NINE. AMAELIA EARHART
Amelia Earhart, fondly known as “Lady Lindy” was an American aviator who mysteriously disappeared in 1937 while trying to circumnavigate the glope from the equator. She had several notable flights, including becoming the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean in 1928, as well as the first person to fly over both the Atlantic and Pacific.
An award-winning book that deserves the hype
Far From the Tree deserves all the hype it can get. It won the National Book Award in 2017 and, even though I do not know much about awards, I think it was a right choice. I loved this book with all my heart and I really think more people should read it.
This book both broke my heart and put it back together. It centers in family, identity and love, which are all very important topics for me, but it did that in such a genuine way. It never felt like the author was trying too hard to be inspiring; instead, it very much felt like she was telling a real story.
TEN. (FREE CHOICE) SOPHIA SCHOLL (1921-1943)
Sophia Scholl was a German student and anti-Nazi political activist, active within the White Rose non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany. She was convicted of high treason after having been found distributing anti-war leaflets at the University of Munich (LMU) with her brother, Hans. As a result, she was executed by guillotine.
A book & a woman that inspire you
I think Sophia Scholl’s story is beautiful and inspiring for a number of reasons. Even if I have no personal attachment to the conflict, I still think it’s amazing to see a young woman, standing up for the entire system she was raised in, and fiding strength to fight back in books and religion. As someone who believes a lot in the power of non-violent resistance, I adore her story a ton.
And speaking of books that inspire me, I couldn’t pass on the opportunity to rave, once again, about the importance of Birthday, by Meredith Russo. Similar to Sophia’s story, I can’t say I personally related to the issues this book dealt with, but it didn’t stop me from feeling *everything* – most of all, from feeling inspired to be my truest self, always.
Now, let’s chat in the comments: what are some women in history that inspire you? And what books by female authors would you recommend to me?