Top 5 Books with Feminist Themes I Want to Read

Top 5 Books with Feminist Themes I Want to ReadThis Top 5 series started back in October 2018 and it has grown really big! This is a series of books that all have a common theme. I post the schedule for the next month the last week of the prior month. You can talk about books you want to read or books you have read and all prompts are open for interpretation! Feel free to get as creative as you want with the prompts.


Upcoming Schedule!

September 26th, 2020 — Guilty Pleasure Reads

October 3rd, 2020 — Intimidating Books

October 10th, 2020 — Feminist Themes

October 17th, 2020 — Animal on the Cover

October 24th, 2020 — Wishlist

October 31st, 2020 — Vampires

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people — So that more people can join us!!

Feminist Books

Feminist books have become pretty popular lately. There are tons of great books out there about powerful women who fight for equality. When feminist themes are explored in fiction you can’t help but think about the world today and how far we have come in the quest for equality, but you also can’t help see how much further we still have to go. I’ve read quite a few feminist books and some of them have really been important books for me. Some of my favorite books with feminist themes are: Vox, The Farm, The Grace Year, Unpregnant, The Furies, What Kind of Girl, The Ravens. Since I discovered #ownvoices novels I’ve really worked to diversify my reading and for me that also includes reading novels with feminist themes that explore the issues of inequality or just feature strong women.


untitledOnly Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill

Freida and Isabel have been best friends their whole lives.

Now, aged sixteen and in their final year at the School, they expect to be selected as companions—wives to wealthy and powerful men. The alternative—life as a concubine—is too horrible to contemplate.

But as the intensity of the final year takes hold, the pressure to remain perfect becomes almost unbearable. Isabel starts to self-destruct, putting her beauty—her only asset—in peril.

And then, the boys arrive, eager to choose a bride.

Freida must fight for her future—even if it means betraying the only friend, the only love, she has ever known…

The first feminist novel that really impacted me was Vox by Christina Dalcher. (Check out my review of Vox!) This book is also a dystopian novel where the rights of women are no longer equal to the rights that men have. These types of books tend to be incredibly thought provoking and this one looks incredible. I also am intrigued by the fact that Only Ever Yours is set at an all girls boarding school.


The Degenerates by J Albert MannThe Degenerates by J. Albert Mann

In the tradition of Girl, Interrupted, this fiery historical novel follows four young women in the early 20th century whose lives intersect when they are locked up by a world that took the poor, the disabled, the marginalized—and institutionalized them for life.

The Massachusetts School for the Feeble-Minded is not a happy place. The young women who are already there certainly don’t think so. Not Maxine, who is doing everything she can to protect her younger sister Rose in an institution where vicious attendants and bullying older girls treat them as the morons, imbeciles, and idiots the doctors have deemed them to be. Not Alice, either, who was left there when her brother couldn’t bring himself to support a sister with a club foot. And not London, who has just been dragged there from the best foster situation she’s ever had, thanks to one unexpected, life altering moment. Each girl is determined to change her fate, no matter what it takes.

This book has received a lot of amazing reviews and it looks pretty powerful. The fact that women used to be sent to insane asylums because they weren’t society’s version of “normal” is a really ugly part of history. This book is about female friendships and humanity. I have a copy of this book and hope to find time to pick it up soon!


The Scrapegracers by Hannah Abigail ClarkeThe Scrapegracers by Hannah Abigail Clarke

An outcast teenage lesbian witch finds her coven hidden amongst the popular girls in her school, and performs some seriously badass magic in the process.

Skulking near the bottom of West High’s social pyramid, Sideways Pike lurks under the bleachers doing magic tricks for Coke bottles. As a witch, lesbian, and lifelong outsider, she’s had a hard time making friends. But when the three most popular girls pay her $40 to cast a spell at their Halloween party, Sideways gets swept into a new clique. The unholy trinity are dangerous angels, sugar-coated rattlesnakes, and now–unbelievably–Sideways’ best friends.

Together, the four bond to form a ferocious and powerful coven. They plan parties, cast curses on dudebros, try to find Sideways a girlfriend, and elude the fundamentalist witch hunters hellbent on stealing their magic. But for Sideways, the hardest part is the whole ‘having friends’ thing. Who knew that balancing human interaction with supernatural peril could be so complicated?

Rich with the urgency of feral youth, The Scapegracers explores growing up and complex female friendship with all the rage of a teenage girl. It subverts the trope of competitive mean girls and instead portrays a mercilessly supportive clique of diverse and vivid characters. It is an atmospheric, voice-driven novel of the occult, and the first of a three-book series.

I love books about powerful women, but I love books about witches even more. This book is about a powerful coven of 4 high school girls. I actually just started this one and I’m SO obsessed. The writing is dark and vivid and I’m loving the female friendships.


The Once and Future Witches by Alix E HarrowThe Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.

But when the Eastwood sisters–James Juniper, Agnes Amaranth, and Beatrice Belladonna–join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten words and ways that might turn the women’s movement into the witch’s movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote-and perhaps not even to live-the sisters will need to delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.

There’s no such thing as witches. But there will be.

This book has been on my wishlist before it even had a title. Alix E. Harrow’s writing is absolutely incredible and when I heard she pitched a book about suffragist witches I knew I had to get my hands on it. I could not be more excited for this one!


The Midnight Bargain by CL PolkThe Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk

Beatrice Clayborn is a sorceress who practices magic in secret, terrified of the day she will be locked into a marital collar that will cut off her powers to protect her unborn children. She dreams of becoming a full-fledged Magus and pursuing magic as her calling as men do, but her family has staked everything to equip her for Bargaining Season, when young men and women of means descend upon the city to negotiate the best marriages. The Clayborns are in severe debt, and only she can save them, by securing an advantageous match before their creditors come calling.

In a stroke of luck, Beatrice finds a grimoire that contains the key to becoming a Magus, but before she can purchase it, a rival sorceress swindles the book right out of her hands. Beatrice summons a spirit to help her get it back, but her new ally exacts a price: Beatrice’s first kiss . . . with her adversary’s brother, the handsome, compassionate, and fabulously wealthy Ianthe Lavan.

The more Beatrice is entangled with the Lavan siblings, the harder her decision becomes: If she casts the spell to become a Magus, she will devastate her family and lose the only man to ever see her for who she is; but if she marries—even for love—she will sacrifice her magic, her identity, and her dreams. But how can she choose just one, knowing she will forever regret the path not taken?

This book caught my eye with its beautiful cover, but the blurb is super intriguing. It’s set in society full of magic and inequalities. It has a main character who has her own dreams, but has to participate in the Bargaining Season to find a husband. The plot sounds interesting and I love a strong main character who is willing to rebel against societal norms.


Check out other book blogger’s Top 5 picks!

Jill @ Jill’s Book Blog — Top 5 Saturday — Feminist Themes

Becky @ Becky’s Book Blog — Feminist Themes– Top 5 Saturday

Dini @ Dinipandareads — Top 5 Saturday: Feminist Themes


Tagged

Isabelle @ The Shaggy Shepherd

Emma @ EmmabBooks

24hrYABookBlog

Melinda @ Basement Bookcase

Luna @ Bookish Luna


Let’s Chat!

Do you enjoy books with feminist themes? What are some of your favorite books that have feminist themes? Have you read any of the books that I’ve mentioned? What did you think of them? Are there any books with feminist themes that should be at the top of my TBR? Make sure you comment below so we can chat!

15 thoughts on “Top 5 Books with Feminist Themes I Want to Read

Add yours

  1. Interesting. I don’t enjoy books that portray a world where all women are enslaved and no men are, because it seems so far from anything that has ever happened ever. (In the ancient world, many people were sex slaves, male and female, and women of high status had social power.) It really doesn’t match what I see going on today.

    I do enjoy books that explore motherhood and the ways it can go wrong. I think the main way that women are oppressed today is by our culture’s hostility toward the idea of motherhood. It’s treated as a liability rather than a superpower, and mothers are judged harshly for everything that goes wrong in their families, while being given very little support.

    Two books I have enjoyed, which you could call feminist, are Big Little Lies, which I am sure you have read, and The Woman Who Walked Into Doors. Both are about domestic abuse. Both MCs are mothers.

    Also, can’t remember if I mentioned it, but I have a book coming out Nov. 2. I don’t know if you’d call it feminist or not. No witches, sex slaves, or lesbians to be seen. It has an ensemble cast and one of the MCs is the matriarch of her family, who makes some decisions that do not please her sons. If just having a woman’s perspective is enough to make a book feminist, then mine is.

    Anyway, if you want an ARC of it, send me your mailing address through the contact button on my blog.

    Like

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