Books

There’s a good chance you’ve read a book and not known that the author is a woman. That’s because, throughout history, many women have used male pen names in order to sneak their work through the publishing industry’s patriarchal doors. As more women tried to get their work published in the 19th century, they faced criticism from publishers who considered them unfit for the literary realm and refused their work for publication solely on the basis of their gender. Even the beloved Charlotte Brontë was...
In our Writing Life series, we talk to your favorite writers about their routines and careers. Here, we caught up with Roxane Gay, who wrote An Untamed State, Bad Feminist, World of Wakanda, Difficult Women, and Hunger and edited the anthology Not That Bad. Do you write on particular days? I try to write every day. Do you write at particular times? I write whenever I can find a pocket of time but I prefer to write late at night. How many hours a day do you devote to writing? I write for anywhere...
Rodham: A Novel By Curtis Sittenfeld(Random House)     Last year, Hillary Clinton said that “the gutsiest thing” she had ever done was stay married to Bill Clinton. But what if she hadn’t? Scratch that—what if she hadn’t married him in the first place? Rodham begins as a fictionalized biography. Hillary graduates from Wellesley, heads to law school, and finds herself in a passionate relationship with charismatic Bill Clinton, who then brings her to Arkansas post-graduation. Almost halfway through the novel, however, author Curtis Sittenfeld steers Hillary Rodham...
FOR THE THOUSANDS of people who turn to Kim Krans’ beautiful tarot cards for answers, it might seem like the artist behind the Wild Unknown deck must have them. But in 2019, when Krans found herself in the throes of an eating disorder in the wake of a painful divorce and miscarriage, she realized she didn’t have the answers at all. She retreated to an ashram in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains, and spent 40 days working through her trauma with art. The result is her new...
Happy birthday JK Rowling! To celebrate the queen of TERFs and Harry Potter author’s birthday, trans folks and allies took to Twitter and started donating money to Mermaids, a UK charity that supports trans youth, in her name. Rowling came under fire last month for her remarks about trans people on Twitter, particularly when she rejected the validity of the term “people who menstruate.” The statement she issued addressing the tweets was equally riddled with transphobia. On her website, Rowling explains why she stood in solidarity...
WANDERING IN STRANGE LANDS: A DAUGHTER OF THE GREAT MIGRATION RECLAIMS HER ROOTSBy Morgan Jerkins(Harper) Growing up, Morgan Jerkins “felt like an outsider among my blood, a feeling that would stay with me until I was an adult.” In this memoir, she tries to connect to the places in America her family first called home by visiting those sites. Jerkins knew that what her family couldn’t remember—or had chosen to forget—“can be found in people you have yet to encounter and places where you have not...
BEFORE THEY BECAME co-authors of Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close (out July 14), pals Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow developed a following as hosts of the feminist podcast Call Your Girlfriend—a show “for long-distance besties everywhere” that has been attracting hundreds of thousands of listeners since 2014. Here, we asked the voracious readers to reveal what books they’ve shared with one another over the years, and why. And they wrote all these responses together—the same way they wrote their whole book! –emily...
Death In Her Hands: A NovelBy Ottessa Moshfegh(Penguin Press)      In her latest novel, Ottessa Moshfegh crafts a murder mystery that asks readers to decide what they believe. Protagonist Vesta Gull moves to a cabin after the death of her husband. One day, while walking with her dog in the woods, she finds a note stating that a woman named Magda has been killed. Vesta is unsure if the note is real or not, but as the possible identities of Magda and her killer develop...
When Jasmine Guillory wrote her breakout 2018 debut novel, The Wedding Date, she “didn’t envision” what ended up happening over the next few years. As of this summer, Guillory has published five interconnected stand-alone romances (with several more in the works) and has earned legions of fans, including the likes of Reese Witherspoon and Roxane Gay. It’s easy to see why: Guillory, 45, writes stories that are deliciously fun and sexy, with charming, complicated heroines, irresistible love interests, and scorching chemistry. Over the phone from...
I don’t know about you, but in the midst of everything going on, I need a break. And if you’re like me, a “break” involves camping out in Netflix’s true crime tab and bingeing “Evil Genius,” “Conversation with a Killer” and “Mindhunter” (all of which I recommend). However, at some point in my watch party, I decided I wanted to hear some stories told by women. It may seem counterintuitive to take a break from the suffering of the world with a book about grisly deaths,...