50 Contemporary Books Every Woman’s Gotta Read: Nonfiction
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

$7.99$2.99Audiobook: 12.99 (WhisperSync)
This genre-defying narrative combines history, science, memoir, and biography. You've been affected by the HeLa cells derived from Maryland woman Henrietta Lacks, called “immortal” because they thrive in the lab: they’ve been used to develop the polio vaccine, cure cancer, and fight the flu. But her family didn't discover anything about the cells until more than twenty years after her 1951 death. Skloot unearths the incredible story of how that happened, weaving the tale of the HeLa cells together with Lacks' personal narrative. More info →
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I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time

I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time

Can a woman truly have it all? 168 Hours author Vanderkam explores what true balance looks like, meticulously upending the dominant culture narrative that presume a woman's professional success comes only at great personal cost. In this data-driven narrative, based on hundreds of time logs from successful professionals, she shows how women who “have it all” succeed at work, enjoy their families, and make time for themselves. An important (and readable) contribution to the ongoing discussion of work/life balance, and I'm not saying this just because a post on this blog inspired the study. More info →
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Being Mortal: Medicine And What Matters In The End

Being Mortal: Medicine And What Matters In The End

Gawande, a surgeon by trade, tackles weighty issues by sharing lots of stories to bring his research to life, making this book eminently readable. Ultimately, this book is about what it means—medically and philosophically—to live a good life. I'm so glad I didn't wait longer to read this: this book gave me a much better understanding of the wants and needs of my own aging family members. Riveting, absorbing, paradigm-shifting, life-changing. More info →
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The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are

The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are

$8.99$4.99
Brown's two-word summary of this book is be you. In it, she shares her ten guideposts for wholehearted living that must be cultivated and practiced in order to engage with the world from a place of worthiness. This is the kind of book you'll wish everyone would read: if you take her message to heart it will change your life. More info →
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Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

Stevenson's story-driven account describes his work with the Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit legal organization he founded that is devoted to defending the most desperate in our legal system: those who were convicted as children, the wrongly condemned, the poor, and the mentally ill. This story also follows the story of Walter, a man sentenced to Alabama's death row for a crime he didn't commit. Moving, eye-opening, beautifully written. More info →
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Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype

Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype

In the book, Dr. Estes interprets old tales to reveal an archetypal "wild woman" we don't see much of in contemporary culture, because those qualities have been tamed by a society that believes women should be "nice." She argues that though those qualities may have been submerged, they're still there—and Estes makes a strong argument for why that matters. More info →
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Women Don’t Ask: Negotiation and the Gender Divide

Women Don’t Ask: Negotiation and the Gender Divide

This 2003 book examines the difference between men and women in their propensity to negotiate from what they want. Drawing on years of research and interviews with dozens of women, the authors examine why women may not choose to ask for what they want, how they can learn to ask, and why it's worth doing. More info →
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The Truth About Style

The Truth About Style

In this how-to book, London explains her personal philosophy of style and why it's empowering for women to find their own. She then helps nine relatable women diagnose their style issues, and shows them how to embrace a look that makes them both look and feel good. More info →
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The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom

The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom

The Four Agreements are: Be Impeccable With Your Word, Don't Take Anything Personally, Don't Make Assumptions, Always Do Your Best, and this 168-page book unpacks why these four simple statements are so important. More info →
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The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict

The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict

This book from the well-respected Arbinger Institute focuses on healing the root cause of conflict, whether it's conflict between family members or conflict between nations. The authors focus on how conflicts take root, spread, and can ultimately be resolved—if we understand how to do it. More info →
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Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead

Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead

$4.99$2.99
Using equal parts memoir, instruction guide, and manifesto, Sandberg tells her story of how she built a career that made it worth staying in the workplace, and she encourages other women to do the same. More info →
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