Powerful Books to Read for Women’s History Month

young woman sitting on the grass in park and reading the book

Kick back with these books this Women’s History Month and have a chance to hear the stories of influential women. While these are heavy reads, they definitely are worth your time. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died

Most of us have heard of retired actress Jennette McCurdy’s 2022 book, “I’m Glad My Mom Died”, which tells the story of her struggles as a child star, her relationship with her abusive mother, and struggles with her childhood eating disorders. 

In this dark comedy memoir, you will read the truth of McCurdy’s life when she was a Nickelodeon star and follow her through her journey of overcoming abuse, disordered eating, and Hollywood. 

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

This book contains sensitive topics of childhood sexual abuse and tells the story of Maya Angelou overcoming rape, teen pregnancy, and racism. Angelou was not light about her harsh childhood in her writings which may be why the autobiography is at the top of the American Library Association’s banned books list. 

I Am Malala

This book tells the story of Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist for female education who was shot by the Taliban when she was just 15 years old. As the world’s youngest Nobel Prize laureate, Yousafzai’s journey of recovery and fighting for the right to education is an inspirational must-read. 

The Bell Jar 

A classic by author Sylvia Plath, this semi-autobiographical book explores Plath’s life and tackles subjects such as birth control, feminism, suicide, sexuality, hospitalization, and mental illness. This is the first and last book that was published by Plath while she was still alive, with her unabridged journals published post-mortem. 

Girl, Interrupted

While this memoir is known for its movie adaptation starring Winona Ryder, “Girl, Interrupted” gives more depth to the time Susanna Kaysen spent in a psychiatric hospital for two years. 

Kaysen writes about dealing with borderline personality disorder and life with other patients at the hospital, and readers get insight into what it was like to be hospitalized in the 60s. 

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic 

In this graphic memoir, Alison Bechdel addresses her life as a comic with themes of sexual orientation, gender roles, emotional abuse, and having a dysfunctional family. The main focus is Bechdel’s complicated relationship with her father and his eventual suicide. 

While it also has a musical theatre adaptation, Bechdel’s memoir is something you should read first before watching the musical.


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Written by Ellie Nas

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