Powerful Reads by Badass Women- Fiction

Happy Tuesday Savvy Readers! In advance of International Women’s Day, we have quite the reading list for you!

International Women’s Day is just around the corner and what better way to celebrate than by reading a good book by a kickass woman? We’re hoping this list, in no particular order, will inspire you, entertain you and give you something to talk about!

The Huntress – Kate Quinn

If you’re looking for powerful women, look no further than Kate Quinn. Her new book The Huntress is packed with fierce and real female characters. You’ve got Nina Markova, Soviet night bomber and part of the legendary Night Witches. Next is Jordan McBride a determined photographer seeking truth through her camera lens. Finally, you’ve got the vicious Nazi predator and antagonist; The Huntress. In this immersive, heart-wrenching story, Kate Quinn illuminates the consequences of war on individual lives, and the price we pay to seek justice and truth.  Also, don’t forget Kate Quinn’s bestselling novel The Alice Network. That’s badass!

tayari jones

An American Marriage – Tayari Jones

If Tayari Jones isn’t the embodiment of power, I don’t know who is. Her new book An American Marriage is an Oprah Magazine Book Favourite, a New York Times notable, Goodreads Choice Awards winner and New York Public Library Best Book for Adults. Celestial and Roy are separated when Roy is sentenced to 12 years for a crime he didn’t commit. As time passes, Celestial takes comfort in her childhood friend and finds she can no longer hold onto the love she had with Roy. But Roy’s conviction is overturned, and he returns ready to resume the life they had together. This stirring love story is a profoundly insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward–with hope and pain–into the future. That’s badass!

The Last Romantics – Tara Conklin

Tara Conklin radiates power. She’s already got a New York Times bestseller, The House Girl, under her belt and a new book, The Last Romantics, ready to follow in its footsteps. When the Skinner siblings lose their father to a heart attack and their mother to a paralyzing depression, they are thrust into a period they will later call “the Pause” which they navigate to become fiercely loyal and deeply connected. But two decades later, they find themselves confronted with a family crisis that tests the strengths and limitations of these bonds they formed. The Last Romantics is an unforgettable exploration of the responsibilities we bear both gracefully and unwillingly, and the all-important, ever-complex definition of love. That’s badass!

On the Come Up – Angie Thomas

Angie Thomas is POWER, POWER, POWER. Her novel The Hate U Give was trailblazing, award winning and bestselling, not to mention made into a major motion picture. Her new, highly anticipated novel On the Come Up is already challenging her first novel for the top spot! It follows sixteen-year-old Bri who wants to become the greatest rapper of all time. She has to fill the big shoes of her hip-hop legend father but trouble at school and an empty fridge make that hard. Bri finds herself at the center of a controversy after her first song goes viral for all the wrong reasons. Insightful, unflinching, and full of heart, On the Come Up is an ode to hip hop from one of the most influential literary voices of a generation. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; and about how, especially for young black people, freedom of speech isn’t always free. That’s badass!

Washington Black – Esi Edugyan

Rogers Writers Trust Fiction Prize, Giller Prize, Carnegie Medal Finalist and Booker Prize Finalist. Need I even say that Esi Edugyan is power? Washington Black is a dazzling, original novel of slavery and freedom from the author of international bestseller Half-Blood Blues. When two English brothers arrive at the sugar plantation, they bring with them darkness beyond what the slaves have previously known. Washington Black is terrified to find out that he has been chosen to live in one of these master’s huts. But his new master turns out to be an eccentric naturalist, explorer, inventor and abolitionist who is intent on building a winged flying machine. But when a man is killed, Washington and his master must escape across America. From the blistering cane fields of Barbados to the icy plains of the Canadian Arctic, from the mud-drowned streets of London to the eerie deserts of Morocco, Washington Black teems with all the strangeness of life. This inventive, electrifying novel asks, What is Freedom? And can a life salvaged from the ashes ever be made whole? That’s badass!

That Time I Loved You – Carrianne Leung

Back again after being shortlisted for the Toronto Book Award for The Wondrous Woo, Carrianne Leung takes the prize with her new novel That Time I Loved You. Powerful to say the least. Tensions that have lurked beneath the surface of a shiny new subdivision in Scarborough in the 1970s start to show behind tidy gardens and picture-perfect windows. Through June, an irrepressible adolescent Chinese-Canadian, Leung depicts the fine line where childhood meets the realities of adult life and how difficult it is to be true to ourselves at any age. Also, this collection of short stories features one of the greatest opening paragraphs that we’ve ever read! That’s badass!

The Gown – Jennifer Robson

If you’re looking for a powerful story of female self-reliance, then look no further than Jennifer Robson’s The Gown. In London in 1947, at a time when Britain was enduring a harsh winter, food rationing and quiet desperation, Ann Hughes and Miriam Dassin are given the chance at a brighter future. They are chosen for a one-in-a-lifetime honour; taking part in the creation of Princess Elizabeth’s wedding gown. More than half a century later, Heather Mackenzie seeks to unravel the mystery of her late grandmother’s legacy and her connection to the textile artist and holocaust survivor, Miriam Dassin. Jennifer Robson introduces readers to three unforgettable heroines, their points of view alternating and intersecting throughout its pages, whose lives are woven together by the pain of survival, the bonds of friendship, and the redemptive power of love. That’s badass!

The Lost Girls of Paris – Pam Jenoff

A New York Times bestseller, Cosmopolitan Best Book Club Book of 2019 and Glamour Best Book of 2019, The Lost Girls of Paris and its talented creator Pam Jenoff are the definition of power. Kate Quinn says “Pam Jenoff’s meticulous research and gorgeous historical world-building lift her books to must-buy status. An intriguing mystery and a captivating heroine make The Lost Girls of Paris a read to savor!” What says power more than women supporting each other? The book itself follows Grace Healey who discovers an abandoned suitcase of photographs which turns out to be the suitcase of Eleanor Trigg, leader of a network of female secret agents deployed out of London during the war. Grace sets out to learn more about these women in a novel that shines light on the incredible heroics of the brave women of the war and weaves a mesmerizing tale of courage, sisterhood and the great strength of women to survive in the hardest of circumstances. That’s badass!

The Home for Unwanted Girls – Joanna Goodman

Joanna Goodman’s power shows through her suspenseful, provocative story and her emotive characters. The Home for Unwanted Girls is the story of a mother who is forcibly separated from her daughter at birth and the lengths that they will go to find each other. Pregnant at fifteen in 1950s Quebec, Maggie is forced to give up her daughter for adoption. Elodie is raised in Quebec’s impoverished orphanage system and transferred, along with thousands of others, to a psychiatric hospital where funding is abundant.  As time passes, the stories of Maggie and Elodie intertwine but never touch, until Maggie realizes she must take what she wants from life and go in search of her long-lost daughter, finally reclaiming the truth that has been denied them both. That’s badass!

Which books are you reading to celebrate International Women’s Day? Don’t forget to add these books to your 50 Book Pledge Shelf! Follow us on twitter @SavvyReader!

Happy reading!

Alice

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