Brown Girl Like Me by Jaspreet Kaur
This part-memoir, part-manifesto from Jaspreet Kaur aims to “equip women with the confidence and tools they need to navigate the difficulties that come with an intersectional identity”. Kaur pulls no punches, tackling difficult topics from mental health and menstruation stigma to education and beauty standards. Essential reading for South Asian women as well as people with an interest in feminism and cultural issues, it will educate, inspire and spark urgent conversations for change.
Burning Questions: Essays and Occasional Pieces by Margaret Atwood
Cultural icon Margaret Atwood turns her gaze to answering some burning questions in a brilliant collection of essays on the human experience. Questions like: how much of yourself can you give away without evaporating? And, what do zombies have to do with authoritarianism? Covering the climate crisis, the pandemic, Donald Trump and granola, the novelist blends intellect and humour in a way only she can.
The Invisible Kingdom, Reimagining Chronic Illness by Meghan O’Rourke
“I got sick the way Hemingway says you go broke: ‘gradually and then suddenly’,” O’Rourke writes in soon-to-be-iconic opener of The Invisible Kingdom, describing the beginning of her decades-long struggle with chronic autoimmune disease. Combining personal experience with a decade of interviews with doctors, patients and researchers, O’Rourke makes the case for radical change in our understanding of our bodies and our health.
Lost & Found: A Memoir by Kathryn Schulz
Kathryn Schulz, a staff writer at The New Yorker and winner of the Pulitzer Prize, writes an incredibly moving memoir about loss and discovery. In Lost & Found, she illustrates simultaneous feelings of grief and love, after meeting the person she would marry 18 months before her father died. This is a beautiful example of what a memoir can do and how deeply it can make us feel.
Like what you’ve read and want more? Check out Five Powerful Memoirs To Add To Your Reading List.