Too often in the past, women have had to fight to be heard. While things are far from perfect now, they are nevertheless better than they were in the past. Part of that is because it is easier for everyone to get their words out in the open. The internet has played a large role in this, but another part is the massive number of books by and about women coming out. These memoirs and biographies make up just a few.
Franci’s War: A Woman’s Story of Survival
By Franci Rabinek Epstein
Penguin Books, $17.00, 272 pages
Franci Rabinek, a dress designer from Prague, spent three years in the Terezin concentration camp. Her memoir, Franci’s War, details these years in a harrowing and powerful story. The book shows not only the struggles she had to go through to survive but also the spirit which carried her through the war, and through emigration to America.
The Nancy Pelosi Way: Advice on Success, Leadership, and Politics from America’s Most Powerful Woman (Women in Power)
By Christine Pelosi
Skyhorse, $19.99, 208 pages
Though she may be a polarizing figure, there is no denying that Nancy Pelosi is powerful and driven. She has to be, to be on her third term as Speaker of the House, and her daughter Christine Pelosi’s book details just how she got there. The Nancy Pelosi Way is more than just a biography. It’s packed with advice for any woman wishing to enter politics, or even just wishing to make a difference.
AOC: Fighter, Phenom, Changemaker
By Prachi Gupta
Workman Publishing Company, $14.95, 144 pages
Newer to the political scene but no less impressive (and just as polarizing) is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. In AOC: Fighter, Phenom, Changemaker, Prachi Gupta takes a look at her life, from her childhood in Westchester County to her career as a bartender to her election to the House of Representatives. If you’ve wanted to learn more about one of the newest faces in Congress, this book is an excellent place to turn.
Rachel Maddow: A Biography
By Lisa Rogak
Thomas Dunne Books, $28.99, 288 pages
Rachel Maddow, by Lisa Rogak, is a close look at the first openly lesbian anchor of a prime time news show. Her sexuality isn’t the only thing worth mentioning about Dr. Maddow, though; she’s a powerful figure in her own right, from the work she nearly had as an activist to her well-researched reports. This biography (the first written about her, but likely not the last) is well worth the read.
She Came to Slay: The Life and Times of Harriet Tubman
By Erica Armstrong Dunbar
37 Ink, $23.99, 176 pages
Most of us have heard of Harriet Tubman through history class, and we mainly know about her because of the Underground Railroad. It’s a shame that common knowledge of her tends to stop there, because as She Came to Slay illustrates, she did so much more. She was a suffragist as well, and an advocate for the elderly, not to mention a spy for the Union during the Civil War. This book is more than just a biography; it’s a tribute to an exceptional American woman.