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Sweatpants & Books | Memoirs of Extraordinary Women

By Heather Dyer

I have to admit, I was very frustrated trying to research badass women for this list. Most of the sources I went to overwhelmingly listed biographies about men. The women who were mentioned were all historical figures. Who says a woman has to be a significant historical figure to be interesting?  Hrumph! Baloney! So, there are badass women on my list, some of whom you’ve heard of and some you haven’t. One of them doesn’t even really exist.

Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World by Linda Hirshman

This story of the first and second women ever appointed to the United States Supreme Court chronicles their different backgrounds and the circumstances that brought them to serve together on the highest court.

Gloria Steinem: My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem

It’s Gloria Steinem. How are you not gonna read this? Steinem recounts her life as a young woman and the experiences that fueled her passion for activism.

A House in the Sky by Amanda Linhout and Sara Corbett

Canadian journalist Amanda Linhout was held captive in Somalia for over four hundred days. I am so intrigued by this, I can’t wait to start reading her story.

The Secret History of Wonder Woman by Jill Lepore

Okay, fine, she’s not a real person. But Lepore weaves Wonder Woman’s history in with feminist history, and will make you wish you could run right out and buy advance tickets for the new Wonder Woman movie currently in production.

D.V. by Diana Vreeland

Vreeland’s autobiography is the next best thing to sitting at a dinner party with her and listening with rapt attention to her tales of the high fashion world and the celebrities who inhabit it.

I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot By the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai

This young woman’s bravery inspired the entire world. If you haven’t read her story yet, now is the time.

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson

This is the funniest book I have ever read. Like ever. It’s the kind of thing you want to read out loud to other people because it’s just so freaking hilarious you have to share it. When I’m feeling down, I go back and re-read parts of this book and laugh until tears run down my face.

H is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald

This would be a great choice for a book group. Naturalist MacDonald raises a goshawk and deals with the death of her father at the same time. It’s not just for birders!

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