The best 69 Gender & Sexuality books

Real Self-Care

Real Self-Care

Pooja Lakshmin
A Transformative Program for Redefining Wellness (Crystals, Cleanses, and Bubble Baths Not Included)
4.6 (14 ratings)

What's Real Self-Care about?

Real Self-Care (2023) exposes the dark side of the global self-care industry by connecting the systemic inequality faced by marginalized groups like women and people of color, and the stress, burnout and chronic illness faced by so many. It offers a science-based alternative and cognitive strategies for living with ease and purpose. 

Who should read Real Self-Care?

  • Frustrated self-carers who feel they’re somehow doing it wrong
  • Tired life-optimizers who wonder why they still feel behind
  • Those looking for kinder, gentler transformation from the inside-out

A Radical Awakening

A Radical Awakening

Shefali Tsabary
Turn Pain into Power, Embrace Your Truth, Live Free
4.1 (24 ratings)

What's A Radical Awakening about?

A Radical Awakening (2021) shows you how to heal by connecting to your authentic self – the person you were meant to be before society’s lies and conditioning morphed you into something else. It speaks from a woman’s point of view, but it doesn’t exclude men. Instead, it seeks to lift everyone from the pain of their past and into a higher consciousness.

Who should read A Radical Awakening?

  • Anyone who wants to heal from their past 
  • Women who’d like to discover their inner power
  • People who feel subjugated by society



An Ancient Greek Tragedy on Civil Disobedience, Morality and Gender
4.6 (15 ratings)

What's Antigone about?

Antigone (c. 441 BC) is a tragedy by Sophocles, one of ancient Greece’s greatest playwrights. After a civil war, two brothers – the leaders of rival factions – are dead. One is remembered as a patriotic hero; the other, as a treacherous usurper. The king of Thebes, Creon, has forbidden anyone to bury the traitor – an order the man’s sister, Antigone, can’t square with her conscience. The stage is set for a conflict pitting the individual against the state, justice against law, idealism against realism, and a defiant woman against a male-dominated world.

Who should read Antigone?

  • Theater enthusiasts interested in the history of drama
  • Fans of classical literature and mythology
  • Anyone interested in exploring themes of morality, family, and power

Lessons in Chemistry

Lessons in Chemistry

Bonnie Garmus
A Novel
4.3 (183 ratings)

What's Lessons in Chemistry about?

Lessons in Chemistry (2022) is the story of Elizabeth Zott, a brilliant scientist who has the misfortune of being a woman in 1950s America. After a frustrating failed academic career, Zott finds success in an unlikely place: as the host of a television cooking show.

Who should read Lessons in Chemistry?

  • Foodies interested in the science behind cooking
  • Feminists looking for a window into the history of women in STEM
  • Anyone who appreciates stories that are sharp and warm-hearted

Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights

Emily Brontë
A Passionate Tale of Revenge Fueled by Unfulfilled Love and Loss

What's Wuthering Heights about?

Wuthering Heights (1847) is a masterpiece of English literature. Set in Yorkshire, it tells the story of two families and their intense, often tumultuous relationships – in particular, the stormy romance between Heathcliff and Catherine.

Who should read Wuthering Heights?

  • Fans of family sagas
  • People drawn to unconventional love stories and antiheroes
  • Anyone interested in classic novels of the nineteenth century

Myth America

Myth America

Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer
Historians Take on the Biggest Legends and Lies about Our Past
2.9 (75 ratings)

What's Myth America about?

Myth America (2022) is a collection of essays that examine and dismantle some of the most pervasive myths about America: how it was founded, who’s allowed to be here, and how we define a ‘real’ American or American family.

Who should read Myth America?

  • History buffs
  • Students of American politics
  • Activists and social justice warriors

The Ethical Slut

The Ethical Slut

Janet W. Hardy and Dossie Easton
A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships, and Other Freedoms in Sex and Love
4.0 (48 ratings)

What's The Ethical Slut about?

The Ethical Slut (1997) has long been the trusted handbook for anyone exploring sex, romance, and intimacy outside the constraints of monogamy. An updated 2017 edition combines time-tested strategies for navigating polyamory with advice on how to embrace an even greater diversity of orientations and relationship configurations.

Who should read The Ethical Slut?

  • Pleasure-seekers who’d like to explore a greater variety of sexual partners
  • Seasoned polyamorists who want to make multiple partnerships really work
  • Anyone who lives – or would like to live – outside the strictures of conventional monogamy

The Evolution of Desire

The Evolution of Desire

David M. Buss
Strategies of Human Mating
3.4 (34 ratings)

What's The Evolution of Desire about?

The Evolution of Desire (1994) drew on the largest study of human mating at the time to analyze the evolutionary foundations that lie behind our everyday desires and mating preferences. It was updated with new material in 2016.

Who should read The Evolution of Desire?

  • Psychology nerds
  • Individuals looking to attract a mate
  • Anyone curious about how our deepest desires work

The Second Sex

The Second Sex

Simone de Beauvoir
The feminist classic about how woman has been shaped into the “other” sex
4.5 (144 ratings)

What's The Second Sex about?

The Second Sex (1949), an 800-page feminist classic, explains how woman has been shaped into the “Other,” second sex – the negative counterpart to man. By examining history, myths, biology and life experience, de Beauvoir paints a clear picture of why woman is subjugated to man, and how womankind should respond.

Who should read The Second Sex?

  • Feminists
  • People interested in philosophy
  • Anyone who loves classics

Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Brontë
A Victorian Heroine’s Struggle for Self-Realization
4.6 (18 ratings)

What's Jane Eyre about?

Jane Eyre (1874) is an intense, intimate portrait of a young woman’s search to find her place in Victorian society without compromising her passionate ideals. It follows her as she navigates life’s obstacles – and her developing love for the mysterious Edward Rochester.

Who should read Jane Eyre?

  • Hopeless romantics who crave plot twists and turns
  • History lovers keen to get a window into life as a nineteenth-century governess
  • Fans of period dramas like Outlander and Bridgerton

The Rational Male

The Rational Male

Rollo Tomassi
Sexual Strategy for Men and Insight Into the Red Pill Ideology
3.0 (60 ratings)

What's The Rational Male about?

The Rational Male (2013) implores men to adopt a pragmatic view of intersexual relationships founded on evolutionary and behavioral concepts. Waking up to the evidence, it argues, will set men on a course to prioritizing their needs over the survival instincts of women who currently (covertly) rule the roost.

Who should read The Rational Male?

  • Members of the Manospehere and Red Pill movement
  • Anyone trying to understand the key concepts of the Manosphere 
  • People looking to understand today’s gender conflicts

In Order to Live

In Order to Live

Yeonmi Park
A North Korean Girl's Journey to Freedom
4.7 (27 ratings)

What's In Order to Live about?

In Order to Live (2015) follows the survival story of Yeonmi Park, a North Korean woman who escaped from her home country. In this inspiring memoir, Yeonmi goes through her horrific journey from North Korea to China and finally to South Korea.

Who should read In Order to Live?

  • Human rights activists
  • Those curious about North Korea
  • Anyone looking for an uplifting story

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Mary Wollstonecraft
A masterpiece of feminist philosophy
4.3 (54 ratings)

What's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman about?

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792) is a historical text that details the gender disparities of the eighteenth century. These blinks explain the ways in which women were subservient to men at this time, why the author wanted a fairer world to take shape and how she suggested it could be done.

Who should read A Vindication of the Rights of Woman?

  • Feminists everywhere
  • History and sociology students
  • Men who want a historical look at women’s rights issues

The Female Brain

The Female Brain

Louann Brizendine
A Comprehensive New Look at What Makes Us Women
4.5 (305 ratings)

What's The Female Brain about?

The Female Brain (2006) is a classic of popular neuroscience which argues that hormone-driven neural development shapes many of women’s drives and behaviors. Just a few hormones chart a course through the cycle of changes that mark life with a female brain.

Who should read The Female Brain?

  • Anyone with a female brain wondering how it all works
  • Biology buffs curious about the intersections of nature and behavior
  • Those who interact with female brains looking for insight

Little Women

Little Women

Louisa M. Alcott
A Coming-of-Age Novel about True Love and Finding One's Place in Life
4.8 (16 ratings)

What's Little Women about?

Little Women (1868-1869) tells the story of the four March sisters, and the struggles and day-to-day obstacles they faced while becoming young adults. While the story takes place in the American Northeast, it’s a universal coming-of-age story that has been appreciated around the world.

Who should read Little Women?

  • Fans of stories told from a female perspective
  • Lovers of classic literature
  • Anyone who likes a good young adult story

The Male Brain

The Male Brain

Louann Brizendine
A Breakthrough Understanding of How Men and Boys Think
4.5 (362 ratings)

What's The Male Brain about?

The Male Brain (2010) is a neuroscientist’s account of the interplay between hormones and brain development that shapes the formation and growth of male brains and behavior. Based on decades of research, it argues that the roots of many masculine stereotypes can be seen in neurobiology, and that hormones shape the male brain and outlook for a lifetime.

Who should read The Male Brain?

  • Anyone with a male brain wondering about how it works
  • Minds curious about biology’s effect on culture
  • Those who interact with male brains looking for insights

Financial Feminist

Financial Feminist

Tori Dunlap
Overcome the Patriarchy's Bullsh*t to Master Your Money and Build a Life You Love
4.0 (293 ratings)

What's Financial Feminist about?

Financial Feminism (2022) debunks the money myths and exposes the systemic oppression that keeps many stuck in toxic jobs or cycles of debt. Offering practical solutions that everyone can start today to close the wage gap, ramp up financial fitness, and build the life of their dreams.

Who should read Financial Feminist?

  • Anyone feeling stuck living paycheck to paycheck
  • Those who want to retire someday
  • Anyone frustrated by the sexist wealth gap looking to build a more equal future

Mad Honey

Mad Honey

Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan
A Novel
4.3 (11 ratings)

What's Mad Honey about?

Mad Honey (2022) tells the story of two women who have fled abusive pasts to make a new life in the small town of Adams, New Hampshire. When one is found dead, and the other finds her son accused of the murder, the tense courtroom drama that unfolds shines light on the true cost of secrets kept for love.

Who should read Mad Honey?

  • Fiction lovers craving a well-told tale about timely issues
  • Courtroom drama fans looking for a story with suspenseful, emotional twists 
  • Anyone curious about a narrative of complex characters facing challenging times

We Should All Be Millionaires

We Should All Be Millionaires

Rachel Rodgers
Change Your Thinking, Build Bank, and Claim Your Independence
4.0 (476 ratings)

What's We Should All Be Millionaires about?

We Should All Be Millionaires (2021) shows how women can attain financial success by casting off impostor syndrome and demanding that they be paid what they’re really worth. Here, you’ll learn how the ability to earn, save, and manage money has been denied to women – and why that’s a bad thing for the world as a whole.

Who should read We Should All Be Millionaires?

  • Women looking to empower themselves with wealth
  • Those looking to found companies of their own
  • Any woman who has been underpaid and overworked

You Are Your Best Thing

You Are Your Best Thing

Edited by Tarana Burke and Brené Brown
Vulnerability, Shame Resilience, and the Black Experience
4.2 (90 ratings)

What's You Are Your Best Thing about?

You Are Your Best Thing (2021) is an anthology of original essays that explore Black experiences of living, loving, and parenting in America today. It examines concepts like vulnerability and shame, and shows that the key to personal healing lies in confronting white supremacy and the racist systems that make Black people feel unsafe in their communities. 

Who should read You Are Your Best Thing?

  • Black people looking for tools to heal from trauma
  • Psychology-lovers seeking new perspectives on how the personal and political intersect
  • Those who want to deepen their understanding of the impact of racism in America

Find Your Unicorn Space

Find Your Unicorn Space

Eve Rodsky
Reclaim Your Creative Life in a Too-Busy World
4.1 (249 ratings)

What's Find Your Unicorn Space about?

Find Your Unicorn Space (2021) opens the door to an important conversation about what makes us unique as individuals and offers a guide to discovering, claiming, and growing your creative interests.

Who should read Find Your Unicorn Space?

  • Women who give too much
  • Creatives who don’t have time to create
  • Recovering workaholics, martyrs, people pleasers, and moms

Invisible Women

Invisible Women

Caroline Criado Perez
Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men
4.6 (189 ratings)

What's Invisible Women about?

In Invisible Women (2019), Caroline Criado Perez argues that there is a “gender data gap” – that the bulk of the world’s data is based on male bodies and male behaviors. The result is a world that not only caters to men but often actively disadvantages women. Perez shows how the data underpinning everything from medicine and AI to the size of our smartphones fails to account for women’s needs. She explores the myriad problems this data gap causes and suggests how it might best be addressed.

Who should read Invisible Women?

  • Feminists of all genders
  • People interested in design, public policy, urban planning, AI and tech
  • Data scientists and analysts

Beat Gender Bias

Beat Gender Bias

Karen Morley
How to Play a Better Part in a More Inclusive World
4.0 (122 ratings)

What's Beat Gender Bias about?

Beat Gender Bias (2020) explores the beliefs and behaviors that underpin the glass ceiling and that stop women and girls from reaching their full potential. It explores the persistence of workplace sexism and explains how leaders can tackle it.

Who should read Beat Gender Bias?

  • Sociology buffs looking for a different perspective 
  • Feminists hoping to create change in their workplaces
  • Leaders seeking insights into equality and diversity issues

The Female Eunuch

The Female Eunuch

Germaine Greer
The landmark book in the history of the womens rights movement
4.4 (36 ratings)

What's The Female Eunuch about?

The Female Eunuch (1970) is an explosive feminist classic that confronts the societal expectations holding women back. These blinks argue that it’s womankind’s responsibility to create new definitions of femininity and take ownership of their bodies, sex and lives.

Who should read The Female Eunuch?

  • Sociology students looking for an introduction to second-wave feminism
  • Budding feminists seeking an empowering read
  • Men who’d like to learn about the forces shaping patriarchal society

Bedtime Biography: Vindication

Bedtime Biography: Vindication

Lyndall Gordon
A Life of Mary Wollstonecraft
4.6 (222 ratings)

What's Bedtime Biography: Vindication about?

Narrated by Karen Cass

(2006) tells the inspiring, thrilling, and often tragic tale of the life of Mary Wollstonecraft, known today as the founder of modern feminism. Drawing on significant moments in Wollstonecraft’s life, from her childhood in an abusive household to her experiences co-founding a school and living in Revolutionary France, it paints a picture of a woman who was as complex as she was brilliant. Throughout every stage of her life, Wollstonecraft was truly an original thinker, and her influence on feminist thought continues to ring out today.

Who should read Bedtime Biography: Vindication?

  • Feminists and people interested in the history of women
  • Fans of stories about tragic heroes
  • Anyone fascinated by the personal lives of famous historical figures

A Room of One’s Own

A Room of One’s Own

Virginia Woolf
An Essential Literary and Feminist Text
4.5 (213 ratings)

What's A Room of One’s Own about?

A Room of One's Own (1929) is a perceptive rumination on gender and self-expression. This extended essay explores the social and structural barriers women face when creating art.

Who should read A Room of One’s Own?

  • Artists looking for inspiring words
  • Women exploring the history of feminism 
  • Those struggling to understand social injustice

Girl, Stop Apologizing

Girl, Stop Apologizing

Rachel Hollis
A Shame-Free Plan For Embracing and Achieving Your Goals
4.3 (131 ratings)

What's Girl, Stop Apologizing about?

Girl, Stop Apologizing (2019) is a helpful and empowering guide for any woman who’s felt the need to apologize for pursuing their dreams and wanting more out of life. Author Rachel Hollis shares tips and advice that have helped her reach her personal goals – and that might help others realize their own dreams too.

Who should read Girl, Stop Apologizing?

  • Women eager to be more productive
  • Moms tired of being made to feel guilty for being ambitious
  • Anyone interested in being more driven



James B Stewart and Rachel Abrams
The Epic Battle for a Media Empire and the Redstone Family Legacy
3.6 (18 ratings)

What's Unscripted about?

Unscripted (2023) is the outrageous true story of Sumner Redstone, the former chairman and controlling shareholder of ViacomCBS (now Paramount Global). It focuses on the eventful final years of Redstone’s life, as well as the downfall of his successor at CBS, Les Moonves.

Who should read Unscripted?

  • Fans of TV dramas like Succession
  • People who enjoy juicy nonfiction and true crime
  • Anyone who wants a behind-the-scenes glimpse of corporate America

How Women Rise

How Women Rise

Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith
Break the 12 Habits Holding You Back from Your Next Raise, Promotion, or Job
4.5 (117 ratings)

What's How Women Rise about?

How Women Rise (2018) explores the surprising things that women say, do and think in the workplace that hold them back from progressing. Using real-world examples and practical advice, the blinks explain how professional women can meet their full potential and rise to the top of their chosen career ladder.

Who should read How Women Rise?

  • Women wanting to climb the career ladder
  • Employers who seek to make their workplace more female-friendly
  • Social psychology enthusiasts looking for fresh insights

Getting to 50/50

Getting to 50/50

Sharon Meers and Joanna Strober
How Working Parents Can Have it All
3.5 (37 ratings)

What's Getting to 50/50 about?

Getting to 50/50 (2009) exposes the myths surrounding traditional male and female parental roles and provides actionable techniques that allow both mothers and fathers to be independent earners, enjoy quality time with their children and share responsibilities in the household.

Who should read Getting to 50/50?

  • Parents who want to share their responsibilities but don’t know how
  • Pregnant women or mothers who want to continue working throughout motherhood

Girl, Wash Your Face

Girl, Wash Your Face

Rachel Hollis
Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be
3.8 (109 ratings)

What's Girl, Wash Your Face about?

Girl, Wash Your Face (2018) is about one crucial truth – you, and you alone, are responsible for your life and happiness. It’s an empowering and sometimes challenging guide to living a joyful, productive and ambitious life.

Who should read Girl, Wash Your Face?

  • Moms and women who feel overwhelmed by life
  • Anyone who needs a little inspiration to pursue their dreams

Fair Play

Fair Play

Eve Rodsky
A Game-Changing Solution for When You Have Too Much to Do (and More Life to Live)
4.4 (54 ratings)

What's Fair Play about?

Fair Play (2019) explores gender inequality in the division of domestic labor and the impact of this inequality on mothers. Packed with practical advice, these blinks also offer couples a radical approach to reallocating domestic chores so that women married to men can get a fairer deal. 

Who should read Fair Play?

  • Busy working mothers
  • Fathers seeking a better work-life balance
  • Stay-at-home moms wanting to change their lives

A Little Life

A Little Life

Hanya Yanagihara
An Epic Novel About Queer Life, Friendship & Human Endurance
4.7 (11 ratings)

What's A Little Life about?

A Little Life (2015) follows the lives of four friends in New York City: aspiring actor Willem, moody painter JB, quiet architect Malcolm, and the brilliant, mysterious litigator Jude. Over the years, the four friends grow together, drift apart, find love and success, and struggle with loss and addiction. As enigmatic Jude gradually moves into the center of the narrative, the full extent of his unbearable burden begins to reveal itself. 

Who should read A Little Life?

  • People who enjoy character-driven literature
  • Fans of stories about complex relationships 
  • Anyone in need of a good cry

We Should All Be Feminists

We Should All Be Feminists

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Why Feminism is the key to a better world
4.1 (103 ratings)

What's We Should All Be Feminists about?

In We Should All Be Feminists (2014), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie expands on her much admired TEDx talk to address our deepest misconceptions about feminism. By masterfully interweaving personal anecdotes, philosophy and her talent for prose, she explains how men and women are far from being equal, how women are systematically discriminated against and what we can do about it.

Who should read We Should All Be Feminists?

  • Anyone who doesn’t see the need for feminism
  • Feminists looking for more arguments and reasoning to strengthen their positions
  • Anyone on the fence about the role feminism can play in modern-day society



Elissa Stein and Susan Kim
The Cultural Story of Menstruation
4.4 (18 ratings)

What's Flow about?

Flow (2009) explores the historical and cultural context of menstruation. By doing so, it seeks to debunk the myths that surround periods and address the misperceptions people have of the basic bodily process of menstruation.

Who should read Flow?

  • Those interested in the history and cultural significance of menstruation
  • Women who are afraid to ask their friends and family about periods and sexual health
  • Women experiencing puberty or menopause

Men Explain Things To Me

Men Explain Things To Me

Rebecca Solnit
And Other Essays
3.8 (70 ratings)

What's Men Explain Things To Me about?

Men Explain Things To Me (2014) is a collection of essays that examine the range of misogyny in our culture, from everyday microaggressions to legal systems that fail to punish rape. Solnit explains how sexism perpetuates itself, and what we can all do to eliminate it.

Who should read Men Explain Things To Me?

  • Women who are tired of men talking down to them
  • Men who want to be allies in the fight against misogyny
  • Anyone curious about feminism or how deep-rooted sexism is in our society

Bad Feminist

Bad Feminist

Roxane Gay
4.3 (92 ratings)

What's Bad Feminist about?

Bad Feminist (2014) is a collection of often personal essays examining race, gender and feminism in the United States. The author, Roxane Gay, pays particular attention to the way media, politics and pop culture shape society’s views and champions her own brand of feminism – one that doesn’t always follow the rules.

Who should read Bad Feminist?

  • Anyone not sure if feminism is for them
  • Anyone looking to gain insight into racial equality in America
  • Students of politics, literature and creative writing



Robyn Ryle
For the Sisters, Misters, and Binary Resisters
2.8 (256 ratings)

What's She/He/They/Me about?

She/He/They/Me (2019) provides readers with a unique opportunity to explore the many concepts and phenomena of gender. Weaving anthropology, global history and gender studies into a fascinating blend of empirical information and theoretical speculation, author Robyn Ryle opens our eyes to the sheer vastness of the possible forms that gender can take.

Who should read She/He/They/Me?

  • People interested in fighting for a society that has more gender equality 
  • Those seeking a deeper understanding of masculinity and femininity 
  • Individuals interested in doing away with such dualities altogether

Women, Race & Class

Women, Race & Class

Angela Y. Davis
An Alternative View of the Feminist Struggle for Liberation
4.4 (128 ratings)

What's Women, Race & Class about?

Women, Race and Class (1981) is a collection of essays that expose how racism, sexism, and classism intertwined in the struggle for women’s suffrage in the United States. With special emphasis on the historical missteps of the mainstream feminist movement, it charts a path for an anti-racist and anti-classist feminism. 

Who should read Women, Race & Class?

  • Feminists looking to understand intersectionality more deeply
  • History buffs
  • Anyone invested in the ongoing struggle for justice

All In

All In

Billie Jean King
An Autobiography
4.3 (26 ratings)

What's All In about?

All In (2021) tells the remarkable life story of Billie Jean King, the woman who led a call for equality in women’s sports that soon reverberated around the world. King’s activism and refusal to back down led to real changes in the US legislature, with results that spread far beyond the realm of sports. All the while, King grappled with personal issues that would only find resolution later in life.

Who should read All In?

  • Sports fans
  • Activists and equal rights crusaders
  • Anyone who loves a good inspirational story

The Soul of a Woman

The Soul of a Woman

Isabel Allende
A personal meditation on life, feminism, and what it means to be a woman
4.4 (64 ratings)

What's The Soul of a Woman about?

The Soul of a Woman (2021) is an honest and personal meditation on life, feminism, and what it means to be a woman. Drawing on experiences from the author’s life, it explores issues around women’s oppression, love, ambition, aging, and abuse. It is at once the story of one woman and the story of all women.

Who should read The Soul of a Woman?

  • Anyone who has experienced misogyny
  • Men who want to understand what life is like for women
  • Fans of biographies and memoirs

Why Love Hurts

Why Love Hurts

Eva Illouz
A Sociological Explanation
3.5 (46 ratings)

What's Why Love Hurts about?

Why Love Hurts (2012) is about the history of love, romance and relationships. These blinks detail the gender differences, cultural expectations and social structures that shape our conception of love and make it one of the more difficult emotions to experience.

Who should read Why Love Hurts?

  • Men who are fed up with being called unemotional
  • Women who are tired of being considered clingy
  • Singles who struggle to maintain relationships

When Women Ruled the World

When Women Ruled the World

Kara Cooney
Six Queens of Egypt
4.1 (187 ratings)

What's When Women Ruled the World about?

Ancient Egypt is a historical anomaly: the Egyptians called upon women to lead their country more frequently than any other culture. Tracing their rise to power within the authoritarian system of divine kingship, When Women Ruled the World (2018) tells the stories of Egypt’s six most important female leaders – Merneith, Neferusobek, Hatshepsut, Nefertiti, Tawosret and Cleopatra – and explores what lessons they hold about female leadership for us today.

Who should read When Women Ruled the World?

  • Folks who are interested in the history of female leadership
  • Women who want to be inspired by female trailblazers of the past
  • History buffs who want to learn more about life and death in ancient Egypt

Good and Mad

Good and Mad

Rebecca Traister
The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger
4.5 (15 ratings)

What's Good and Mad about?

Good and Mad (2018) lists the many reasons for feminist political anger. This anger, though repressed for the past few decades, has recently reemerged, as evidenced by the 2017 Women’s March and the #MeToo movement. By understanding the historical, political, cultural and economic currents underlying these two landmark events, we can better understand history as it unfolds before our eyes.  

Who should read Good and Mad?

  • Women who are sick and tired of gender inequality 
  • Men trying to understand where feminist political anger is coming from
  • News followers who want a context for understanding the #MeToo movement

Moody Bitches

Moody Bitches

Julie Holland
The Truth About the Drugs You’re Taking, the Sleep You’re Missing, the Sex You’re Not Having, and What’s Really Making You Crazy
4.1 (48 ratings)

What's Moody Bitches about?

Moody Bitches (2015) is your guide to the female body and brain. These blinks explain some of the reasons behind the emotions and fluctuating moods that women can experience and how they can better tune into themselves, embrace their feelings and their bodies.

Who should read Moody Bitches?

  • Women who are frustrated by their mood swings
  • Young girls who want to know more about their brains and bodies
  • Women who want to have better sex

The Witches Are Coming

The Witches Are Coming

Lindy West
Education on gender politics
3.5 (50 ratings)

What's The Witches Are Coming about?

In The Witches are Coming (2019) writer and feminist activist Lindy West applies her scalpel-sharp intellect to today’s political landscape. She uncovers the ideological agendas behind everything from Adam Sandler movies to the wellness movement, abortion rights to Louis C.K.’s comeback. This is feminism for the post #metoo era.

Who should read The Witches Are Coming?

  • Feminists who feel frustrated by the state of contemporary gender politics
  • Men who want to be better allies to the women in their lives
  • Anyone who’s oppressed by the patriarchy

Good for a Girl

Good for a Girl

Lauren Fleshman
A Woman Running in a Man's World
4.9 (13 ratings)

What's Good for a Girl about?

Good for a Girl (2023) chronicles the career of pro runner Lauren Fleshman, and the issues with the sports system she encountered along the way. It’s both a memoir detailing her life and a manifesto crying for change.

Who should read Good for a Girl?

  • Aspiring female athletes and coaches
  • Advocates of sports industry change
  • Fans of Lauren Fleshman

Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions

Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Empower yourself, empower your daughter
4.2 (31 ratings)

What's Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions about?

Dear Ijeawele (2017) is a series of suggestions for raising young girls to be strong, independent women. A few years ago, a childhood friend of author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie asked her advice on a very important topic – how to raise her daughter to be a feminist. Her friend was called Ijeawele, and this book is the author’s response.

Who should read Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions?

  • Feminists
  • Parents of daughters
  • Men looking for insight into what it’s like to grow up as a girl

All The Single Ladies

All The Single Ladies

Rebecca Traister
Unmarried Women and The Rise of an Independent Nation
4.5 (39 ratings)

What's All The Single Ladies about?

All The Single Ladies (2016) chronicles the history and changing circumstances of single women in America. These blinks explain how cultivating female friendships and seeking alternative strategies to balancing personal and professional obligations help women achieve greater success and independence.

This is a Blinkist staff pick

“A book-in-blinks all about capital-L Love: love of place, love of one’s work, and most important, the romance of friendship between a single woman and her female familiars. Come for the history and politics, stay for the feels. The chapter on friendship made me cry.”

– Caitlin, Simplify Co-host & Podcast Lead

Who should read All The Single Ladies?

  • Career women frustrated with the dilemma of choosing between family and work
  • Newly single women looking to live happier lives
  • Readers interested in the history of gender roles in America

The Moment of Lift

The Moment of Lift

Melinda Gates
How Empowering Women Changes the World
4.2 (73 ratings)

What's The Moment of Lift about?

The Moment of Lift (2019) relates the journey that Melinda Gates embarked upon to help empower women all around the world. Whether through stories of people she met via her charitable work or from experiences recounted by others, this part-memoir, part-call-to-action explores the myriad social and economic issues women and girls face on a daily basis. But while many of these hurdles seem insurmountable, only by overcoming them can humanity as a whole move forward to a more egalitarian and just future.

Who should read The Moment of Lift?

  • Women who want to learn more about gender issues
  • Men looking to understand the hardships faced by women
  • Curious minds interested in the links between poverty, gender and inequality

Sex and the Citadel

Sex and the Citadel

Shereen El Feki
Intimate Life in a Changing Arab World
3.9 (37 ratings)

What's Sex and the Citadel about?

Sex and the Citadel (2013) offers a revealing look at the sex lives of people in Muslim countries, especially Egypt, which, about 200 years ago, was a hotbed of sensual and sexual activity, but has since become a conservative and sexually repressed society. These blinks take you through the taboos, censorship and gender discrimination that many Muslims continue to resist.

Who should read Sex and the Citadel?

  • Non-Muslims hoping to learn more about the diversity of Muslim society
  • Muslims interested in their culture’s sexuality
  • Feminists who want a better understanding of the struggles Muslim women face



Jaclyn Friedman
Women, Sex, Power, and How to Stop Letting the System Screw Us All
4.0 (21 ratings)

What's Unscrewed about?

Unscrewed (2017) looks at the numerous obstacles that women face every day on their path to equality and respect. Author Jaclyn Friedman shows the way forward. She shines a light on those who are already hard at work dismantling these barriers and explains why even though the current system may be imbalanced, but we can build a new one.

Who should read Unscrewed?

  • Women and men interested in sexual politics
  • Sociology students
  • Readers who want to be better sex educators

Women and Power

Women and Power

Mary Beard
A Manifesto
4.2 (38 ratings)

What's Women and Power about?

In Women and Power (2017), Mary Beard brings her considerable expertise and wry wit to bear on history's treatment of powerful women. Britain's best-known classicist retells stories from the ancient world and brings her analytical insight to the modern day. Beard explores the cultural roots of misogyny, the vilification of women’s voices, and asks whether it’s time for power to be redefined.

Who should read Women and Power?

  • History buffs
  • People interested in feminism
  • People looking for context to current discussions about sexual harassment, abuse of power and the #MeToo movement

The Managed Heart

The Managed Heart

Arlie Russell Hochschild
Commercialization of Human Feeling
3.5 (31 ratings)

What's The Managed Heart about?

The Managed Heart (1983) is the seminal sociological text that introduced the concept of emotional labor. These blinks reveal how we adjust our emotions to our advantage in social and professional contexts, and shed light on the risks and consequences of this form of self-management.

Who should read The Managed Heart?

  • Readers working customer-facing jobs
  • Students interested in gender issues in the workplace
  • Working mothers frustrated with the expectations they face

Unfinished Business

Unfinished Business

Anne-Marie Slaughter
Women, Men, Work, Family
3.7 (12 ratings)

What's Unfinished Business about?

Unfinished Business (2015) offers a frank analysis of a pressing question. Is it really possible for men and women to “have it all” in our modern society? Can we hope to have a great family life and great career? As these blinks reveal, striking a balance between the personal and the professional isn’t only possible; it’s easier than you might think.

Who should read Unfinished Business?

  • Women who want to have a successful career and a happy family
  • CEOs who want to provide a mother-friendly workplace
  • Men hoping to learn more about what equal romantic partnership means

Galileo’s Middle Finger

Galileo’s Middle Finger

Alice Dreger
Heretics, Activists, and One Scholar’s Search for Justice
3.5 (30 ratings)

What's Galileo’s Middle Finger about?

Galileo’s Middle Finger (2015) tackles head on the controversial issue of transgender research, intersex issues, and the conflicts that have arisen between academics, scientists and activists. It offers a behind-the-scenes look at just how dangerous an idea can be when it challenges a familiar narrative or an established ideology and  reminds us that, in the face of harmful threats and accusations, it’s important to be open, honest and persevering—and that science and social justice need each other in order to work.

Who should read Galileo’s Middle Finger?

  • Activists fighting for controversial causes
  • Scholars studying ground-breaking subjects
  • People who want to transcend identity politics

Know My Name

Know My Name

Chanel Miller
A Memoir
4.6 (29 ratings)

What's Know My Name about?

In Know My Name (2019), Chanel Miller presents her side of what happened when she was sexually assaulted by Stanford student Brock Turner and forced to endure a long and traumatizing trial in the public eye. Drawing parallels between her own experience and the structural mistreatment of women in the court system, she explains what made her determined to share her story and empower other survivors.

Who should read Know My Name?

  • People who want to learn more about the experience of sexual assault survivors in the US court system
  • Memoir-lovers who want to be inspired by the story of a remarkable woman 
  • Activists who want inspiration for effecting political change

Asking for It

Asking for It

Kate Harding
The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture – and What We Can Do about It
3.9 (16 ratings)

What's Asking for It about?

Asking for It (2015) is about rape culture, the social and cultural practices that normalize rape by diminishing the experiences of victims and vindicating perpetrators. These blinks outline the various manifestations and effects of rape culture, and the steps we can take to dismantle it.

Who should read Asking for It?

  • Anyone whose life has been affected by sexual violence
  • Romantic partners looking to understand more about consensual sex
  • Policy makers and sex educators

How Not To Be a Boy

How Not To Be a Boy

Robert Webb
A comedian's journey with masculinity and gender
3.8 (24 ratings)

What's How Not To Be a Boy about?

How Not To Be a Boy (2017) is writer and actor Robert Webb’s personal account of what it was like to grow up as a boy in rural England. In particular, what it was like to be the kind of boy who wasn’t all that into typically “manly” stuff. Webb’s tale is both a heartfelt autobiography and a humorously critical assessment of the pressures society can put on young men.

Who should read How Not To Be a Boy?

  • Readers who love a funny story
  • People opposed to gender stereotypes
  • Fans of Robert Webb and Peep Show



Tarana Burke
My Story of Liberation and the Birth of the Me Too Movement
4.5 (141 ratings)

What's Unbound about?

Unbound (2021) is a powerful memoir by Tarana Burke, the founder of the Me Too movement. Survivors of sexual abuse stay silent because of shame and victim-blaming around the abuse. The Me Too movement has created a remarkable community of survivors who support each other in challenging stigma and holding perpetrators to account. 

Who should read Unbound?

  • Followers of #MeToo who want to find out where it all began 
  • Survivors of sexual assault looking for an inspiring story about how to heal in spite of obstacles
  • Activists who want to learn more about Burke’s unique approach to fighting for social justice



Emily Chang
Breaking Up the Boys’ Club of Silicon Valley
4.6 (19 ratings)

What's Brotopia about?

Brotopia (2018) explores the male-dominated culture permeating the technology industry and looks at why and how women are excluded from it. Looking especially at Silicon Valley and the companies based there, the book argues that the tech world is anything but progressive.

Who should read Brotopia?

  • Those who work or want to work in the tech industry
  • Female employees who believe they are unfairly mistreated in the workplace
  • Tech company CEOs and managers 

The Professor in the Cage

The Professor in the Cage

Jonathan Gottschall
Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch
4.4 (16 ratings)

What's The Professor in the Cage about?

In The Professor in the Cage (2015), professor Jonathan Gottschall enters the world of mixed martial arts to discover the sources of our fascination with violence. Through the power of modern science and by applying the weight of human history, these blinks reveal how our love of fighting is grounded in our deepest human instincts.

Who should read The Professor in the Cage?

  • Anyone interested in the origins of violence
  • People fascinated by martial arts
  • Anyone hoping to learn more about humanity’s fascination with fighting

Bloody Brilliant Women

Bloody Brilliant Women

Cathy Newman
Pioneers, Revolutionaries, and Geniuses Your History Teacher Forgot to Mention
4.2 (34 ratings)

What's Bloody Brilliant Women about?

Bloody Brilliant Women (2018) shines a light on some of British history’s most remarkable women, who, for years, were conveniently left out of history books mainly written by men. Newman rights this wrong, providing an exhaustive history of the multitude of women responsible for shaping Britain from the 1880s to the present day.

Who should read Bloody Brilliant Women?

  • History buffs
  • Feminists
  • Anglophiles

Fast Forward

Fast Forward

Melanne Verveer and Kim K. Azzarelli
How Women Can Achieve Power and Purpose
4.8 (12 ratings)

What's Fast Forward about?

Fast Forward (2015) is about one of the most underappreciated resources on earth: women. These blinks, which argue that women will be the key to this century’s greatest achievements, outline many of the myriad problems that women face, as well as the steps we can take to solve them.

Who should read Fast Forward?

  • Feminists and human rights activists
  • Anyone interested in global power politics
  • People who want to make the world a better place

Power Up

Power Up

Magdalena Yesil
How Smart Women Win in the New Economy
4.1 (15 ratings)

What's Power Up about?

Power Up (2017) aims to empower women in the workplace with practical advice and heartfelt anecdotes from a Silicon Valley pioneer. Although primarily focused on the tech industry, it’s a guidebook that can be applied to breaking glass ceilings in all industries. From taking ownership of career choices to navigating sexist office politics, Magdalena Yesil offers a call to action for women who want appropriate credit for their hard work and a salary to match.

Who should read Power Up?

  • Women in business
  • Anyone working in the tech industry
  • Entrepreneurs and venture capitalists

Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism

Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism

Kristen Ghodsee
And Other Arguments for Economic Independence
3.7 (39 ratings)

What's Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism about?

Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism (2018) makes an argument that’s even more provocative than its title suggests. More than just better sex, it claims that women have better lives in general under socialism. To prove this claim, it compares and contrasts women’s lives under state socialism, democratic socialism, and neoliberal capitalism. 

Who should read Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism?

  • Socialists wanting ammunition for their next argument 
  • Capitalists wanting food for thought 
  • Women and men wanting a fresh take on gender equality

Abortion and the Law in America

Abortion and the Law in America

Mary Ziegler
Roe v. Wade to the Present
4.4 (127 ratings)

What's Abortion and the Law in America about?

Abortion and the Law in America (2020) offers a comprehensive legal history of abortion rights in the US. It highlights the social and cultural shifts that have contributed to the abortion debate and looks closely at the types of arguments invoked by both sides.

Who should read Abortion and the Law in America?

  • People who want to learn more about the complexity of the American abortion debate
  • Those interested in the relationship between cultural values and law
  • Anyone following US politics

Half the Sky

Half the Sky

Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
4.5 (16 ratings)

What's Half the Sky about?

Half the Sky is about unlocking the greatest untapped resource on Earth: women. It outlines some of the most serious problems facing women throughout the world, such as human trafficking and gender-based violence, and why it’s so difficult for the world to overcome them, and what we stand to gain if we do.

Who should read Half the Sky?

  • Women and men everywhere
  • Anyone interested in feminism and gender equality
  • Anyone who wants to make the world a better place

Engines of Liberty

Engines of Liberty

David Cole
The Power of Citizen Activists to Make Constitutional Law
3.6 (15 ratings)

What's Engines of Liberty about?

Engines of Liberty (2016) is an exploration into the influence citizens can have on government, and the changes that can be brought about through activism, the spreading of information and the mobilization of one’s peers. When it comes to the big issues of our time, like gay marriage, guns and human rights, it’s passionate citizens who are speaking up for what they believe in and bringing about change.

Who should read Engines of Liberty?

  • Activists passionate about civil liberties
  • Lawyers and politicians interested in the history of civil rights
  • Concerned citizens who want to become more active

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