books

Five of the best books for women released so far in 2017.

Whether you’ve run out of Netflix shows or are simply an avid reader looking for something new, we’ve compiled a list of five of the best books for women published so far in 2017.

Best Books: For your daughter/granddaughter/niece

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo, $32.95

From Elizabeth I to Serena Williams, the Bronte sisters to Malala, this crowdfunded bedtime book catalogues the tales and achievements of 100 kick-ass women. These beautifully illustrated stories are designed to inspire your rebel daughter (or son!) to dream big and to remember that, while fairytales and princess stories might be nice sometimes, in real life girls can be heroes too.

Quote: “Once upon a time, a girl called Amelia saved enough money to buy a yellow aeroplane. She called it The Canary.”

Listen: Mia Freedman chats to literary phenomenon Jodi Picoult. (Post continues below.)

Best Books: Memoir

The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy, $29.99

Ariel Levy is a profile writer for The New Yorker, but in this memoir, she turns the pen on herself and asks what happens when you can’t control how your own story unfolds. Raised to believe she could have it all – love, a child, a successful career – Levy chronicles how hard she worked to achieve it and how, so quickly, it was all lost.

Raised to believe she could have it all – love, a child, a successful career – Levy chronicles how hard she worked to achieve it and how, so quickly, it was all lost.From her miscarriage in a Mongolian

From her miscarriage in a Mongolian hotel to her spouse’s addiction, her tale is heartbreaking but beautifully written with honesty, hope and humour.

Quote: “People have been telling me since I was a little girl that I was too fervent, too forceful, too much. I thought I had harnessed the power of my own strength and greed and love in a life that could contain it. But it has exploded.”

Best Books: Novel

Refuge by Dina Nayeri, $32.99

When eight-year-old Niloo flees Iran for the United States, her father remained behind, anchored by his work and his addiction. Over the next 20 years father and daughter meet again just four times, but the more their lives continue to diverge, the more each comes to need the other’s wisdom and, ultimately, rescue.Based loosely around her own life, Nayeri’s novel explores a refugee’s search for identity, and what it’s like to live both with roots and wings.

Based loosely on her own life, Nayeri’s novel explores a refugee’s search for identity, and what it’s like to live both with roots and wings.

Quote: “Had he, with his fatherly hopes for [his daughter] and her brother, sent them off to a foreign land to struggle and to pray to deaf gods? Did she belong to a place, to a people?”

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Best Books: How to

Not Just Lucky by Jamila Rizvi, $35.00

A former political staffer and journalist, Rizvi’s ‘feminist career manifesto’ is for women who worry they’ll look greedy if they ask for more money, for women who dream big but act small, for women who explain away their career success as ‘luck’.

Through case studies, she highlights the crisis of confidence Australian women experience in the workplace, and through wisdom and wit, she shows us how we can help overcome it.

Quote: “Falling over themselves to appear nice and non-threatening, even the highest-achieving women in the world attribute their success to chance. ‘I was just lucky,’ she says aloud. ‘Please don’t hate me,’ is her unspoken plea.”

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Best Books: Humour

We Are Never Meeting in Real Life: Essays by Samantha Irby, $31.95

Fans of Irby’s blog Bitches Gotta Eat and her debut book Meaty (which, by the way, is being turned into a TV series by Broad City star Abbi Jacobson) will have a bit of an idea what they might be in for with this collection of 20 essays.

For the rest, let’s just say it opens with her application to be on The Bachelor ( “Age: 35ish but I could pass for forty-seven to fifty-two easily; sixtysomething if I stay up all night”). And only gets more hilarious from there. Careening through everything from awkward sexual encounters to complicated friendships with the suburban mums she once called her drinking buddies, Irby stays true to her trademark ten-laughs-a-minute style.

Quote: “The Bachelorette is my guilty pleasure jam. That may come as a surprise to some of you, but you should already know that a show where a woman is surrounded by twenty-five slabs of brisket clamoring to brazenly drink her dirty bathwater and massage the corns on her toes in front of the entire country is 100 percent my kind of party.”

Got any to add? Comment below with the best female-focused book you’ve read recently.

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