Women's Fiction

Girls Like Us by Randi Pink

Girls Like Us

4
Rated by Julia B.
Jul 24, 2020

As a teen invested in equal rights, I really enjoyed this book. I didn't know much history about this topic and because of that the most compelling aspect of the book is how it provided a new perspective. Lots of other teens like me will find this book informative and inspiring, and that is what makes it awesome. I also love books that have multiple POVs and make each person’s story come together in the end, and this book did a really good job with that. I think publishing novels like this one is really important to the current generation. We need books like this to empower us to do better

Deerskin

By Robin McKinley
4
Rated by Anne G
Feb 21, 2020

     You know, sometimes you just need some escapist fantasy about self-discovery in women.  McKinley's seventeen-year-old girl Lissar was just the ticket for me last night. Deesrkin is a beautiful, haunting, and sometimes painful coming-of-age story that ends with a message of hope.  The first half of the fantasy fiction is really about the traumatic aftermath of a violent assault and rape by the heroine's own father.  These dark themes are handled appropriately, realistically, and with great compassion but they do make for some hard reading in the gateway fantasy.   


     If you have any

The Woman in Cabin 10

By Ruth Ware
3
Rated by Megan K.
Dec 31, 2019

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware


Ruth Ware, a well established mystery author, created a captivating novel with The Woman in Cabin 10. I am not overly familiar with Ware’s writing style, as I have only read two (this one included) of her mysteries. The formula of this particular book reminded me of an Agatha Christie novel, as it followed the same “trapped with a group of people, one of whom is a murderer” formula as many of Christie’s own books. Lo Blacklock, a travel writer, is given the chance to report on a luxury cruise with a select few passengers, when she hears a splash in the

The Giver of Stars

By Moyes, Jojo
5
Rated by Lisa H
Oct 7, 2019

The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes is historical fiction at its very best!  Set in 1939 Southern Kentucky, the lives of five strong female characters come together to form and operate the Packhorse Library, where they deliver by horseback, books, magazines and newspapers to those living in remote, rural areas.


One of the main characters, Alice, an Englishwoman, marries an American and is brought to Kentucky where she hopes to start a new, dazzling life with her husband. That is not to be the case.  Alice finds living with her husband and her father-in-law to be stifling and oppressive. Alice

The Atonement Child

By Francine Rivers
4
Rated by Cheryl M.
May 13, 2019

The Atonement Child had me in its grips from the beginning and held me until the last word. The story centers around three women from the same family. Dynah Carey, a college student at a Christian university; her mother Hannah; and her grandmother, Eve. Dynah becomes pregnant through a rape and must decide if she will keep or terminate the pregnancy. As the novel progresses, each woman tells her unique story around the charged topic of abortion. This is the first Christian fiction that I have read, and I was a little unprepared for the emphasis on Christian doctrines of faith. However

The Harvey Way

By Carolyn Meyer
5
Rated by Heather McCartin
Apr 8, 2019

In the late 1800s and early-mid 1900s, the Harvey Girls were considered to be elite hostesses and servers for entrepreneur and businessman Fred Harvey.  Harvey developed the concept of the ‘Harvey House’ dining areas along various railways across the United States, including the Atchison, Topeka, and the Santa Fe.  These hospitality restaurants worked in tandem with the railways in order to provide first class service to passengers and railroad employees.  Meals were served promptly on a strict schedule and all Harvey Girls were expected to follow a strict code of conduct that included a

The Help

By Kathryn Stockett
5
Rated by Heather McCartin
Dec 5, 2018

The Helpthe debut novel by Kathryn Stockett, published nearly ten years ago, has the remarkable ability to remain relevant in today’s polarized climate of questions and the search for truth and justice.  Here we meet three different women: Skeeter Phelan, Aibileen Clark, and Minny Jackson, all wanting to change the status quo without knowing how or when to start.  Set in 1960s Jackson, Mississippi, there is a strong divide between the races that results in violence and fear among the residents as the Civil Rights Movement continues throughout the nation.  The power struggle exists in the

The Marriage Of Opposites

By Alice Hoffman
5
Rated by Stephanie S
Jul 31, 2018

I absolutely love this book and consider it one of my "top 10" favorites! I did not expect to like it when a friend lent me her copy to read, but it blew me away. 


Alice Hoffman's writing is so rich in detail that it's mesmerizing. The Marriage of Opposites is historical fiction set during the 19th century, based on the real life of Rachel Pomie', the mother of Camille Pissarro who became a famous artist and one of the fathers of impressionism. Most of the story is set on the island of St. Thomas, and then ultimately in Paris. Rachel Pomie' is a girl that does not like rules and is

I'll Be Your Blue Sky

By Marisa De los Santos
5
Rated by Stephanie S
Jul 1, 2018

I loved this book! Clare is a recent college graduate engaged to be married but is starting to have second thoughts. The weekend of her wedding, Clare has several chance encounters with a stranger named Edith, an elderly woman who happens to be staying at Clare's wedding venue. Clare's conversations with Edith change the trajectory of Clare's life. Without giving away any plot details, the book alternates between Clare's present and Edith's past. As Clare searches to uncover the mystery of Edith's past, she learns more about herself and what's important in life. 


I'll Be Your Blue Sky is

The Natural Way of Things

By Charlotte Wood
4
Rated by Amanda W.
Mar 31, 2017

The Natural Way of Things opens dramatically as Yolanda discovers she is being held captive in the Australian Outback. She is one of a small group of women who all have a curious, not immediately obvious, connection: they have all been part of public sex scandals. While the story leaves a lot unanswered and is incredibly dark in content and description, the beautiful writing was enough to keep me engaged until the end.


The story follows Yolanda and another captive, Verla, as they try to navigate survival in the extreme conditions they awoke to after being drugged and kidnapped. They sleep

A Hundred Pieces of Me

By Lucy Dillon
5
Rated by Emily D.
Feb 8, 2017

If you love dogs (and I sincerely hope you do), you'll love this heart warming story of a woman finding her place in the world and a dog finding a home. Gina Bellamy suddenly finds herself trying to figure it all out on her own after her recent divorce. As she struggles to find herself in all the clutter of life she decides to keep only one hundred essential things. Little does she know, she will find that Buzz, a neglected and anxious greyhound, fits perfectly in her new life and happy moments.


 


More on Lucy Dillon:


I have read all three books by Lucy Dillon that Johnson County

The Atomic Weight of Love

By Elizabeth J. Church
4
Rated by Kari E.
Jan 22, 2017

The Atomic Weight of Love is an outstanding debut novel. Meridian Wallace puts her dreams of a Masters and PhD. on hold and follows her husband, Alden Whetstone, to Los Alamos, New Mexico where he helps develop the atomic bomb. Meridian’s unfinished scholarly work in ornithology leads her to question her life with Alden, who becomes more interested in his work and must lead a rather secretive life. Clay Griffin, a Vietnam veteran, changes the course of Meridian’s life when he teaches her the value of an equal relationship and following her own path. Meridian’s growing interest in women’s

Eligible

By Curtis Sittenfeld
3
Rated by Rachel N.
Sep 11, 2016

Eligible is a retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. Set in modern day, the five Bennet sisters are all back at home after Mr. Bennet has health issues--though some of the sisters have never left. CrossFit, reality shows, fertility treatments, and dating make for some humorous situations. I found the plot enjoyable, funny, and sometimes refreshingly real when dealing with more serious situations. Unfortunately, I did not like our main character, Liz, very much. Liz is important as the glue that hold the Bennets together, but her modern-day past was a bit disappointing for me

Eight Hundred Grapes

By Laura Dave
4
Rated by Rachel N.
Jul 22, 2016

Georgia Ford runs away from problems in her own life and goes straight to her place of comfort: home. Unfortunately for Georgia, with her parents heading in different directions, her brothers not on speaking terms, and the uncertain future of the family vineyard, life at home is not what she was expecting. Georgia finds that among all her family's issues, she is still unable to escape her own.


This novel is all about the complexity of life's interruptions and how they affect relationships. I was hooked by the end of the first chapter when I found out why people out for a drink were staring

Miller's Valley

By Anna Quindlen
4
Rated by LeeAnn B.
May 11, 2016

Miller’s Valley is a coming of age novel about Mimi Miller, a girl growing up in the 1960s in rural Pennsylvania. Mimi and her family live on the same farm their family has lived on contentedly for generations. But things in Miller's Valley are beginning to change. Mimi’s dad is a farmer, but he’s really the fix-it man for the entire town. Mimi’s mom is a nurse who still manages to be around to raise Mimi and her two brothers. Mimi’s aunt, Ruth, also lives in a little house on their farm. In fact, she hasn’t left the inside of her house for many years. Over the years, their valley has been

What We Find

By Robyn Carr
4
Rated by Lisa J.
Apr 29, 2016

Denver neurosurgeon Maggie Sullivan has reached a low point and needs a break. After being named in a wrongful death lawsuit, her medical partners being indited for fraud, and a miscarriage and break up with her boyfriend, Maggie is yearning for the peace of the mountains where her father's country store and campground on the Continental Divide Trail reminds her of less complicated times. Cal Jones is an early arrival to the campground and is there for a specific purpose; letting go and moving on after his wife's prolonged illness and passing. Of course, he doesn't share that right away and

Lilac Girls

By Martha Hall Kelly
4
Rated by Lisa J.
Apr 4, 2016

It's September 1939 and as Hitler invades Poland with his sight set on France, the paths of Caroline, Kasia and Herta are set on a course that will change their lives forever. Socialite Caroline Ferriday lives in New York City and volunteers at the French Consulate, helping French nationals visiting the United States. She also organizes aide for French orphanages. Kasia Kuzmerick is a Polish teenager who sees her way of life disappearing with the occupation of Hitler and she works as a courier for the resistance movement in Poland. Meanwhile, German physician, Herta Oberheuser, frustrated at

Our Souls at Night

By Kent Haruf
5
Rated by Caitlin T.
Mar 24, 2016

A quick read with a poignant message, Our Souls at Night is a moving story of two elderly neighbors who find themselves lonely after both their spouses have gone, one by choice and one by death. In an act of bravery, Addie visits her longtime neighbor, Louis, and propositions him to be her sleeping partner. Addie has no hidden agenda or sordid intent; just a desire to sleep next to another person again. Taking her up on her offer, Louis and Addie get to know each other all while sharing their nights together. A wrench is thrown into their arrangement when Addie’s six-year-old grandson needs to

The Boston Girl

By Anita Diamant
4
Rated by Caitlin T.
Mar 8, 2016

The Boston Girl is a classic tale of a first generation American woman in the early 1900s trying to start a better life. Addie Baum, an ambitious and likeable Jewish woman now in her eighties, tells the story of her youth to her twenty-two year old granddaughter. Her misadventures in a world unimaginable to her family are touching and amusing, though a little too familiar. At its core, this is a historically based coming of age novel intended for adults about the search for knowledge, love and self.


I rate this book a seven out of ten mostly due to its predictability. I had high

My Name Is Lucy Barton

By Elizabeth Strout
4
Rated by Cheryl M.
Feb 25, 2016

My Name Is Lucy Barton by Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout is a novel to be read slowly and savored for its richness of story. At less than 200 pages, it is a novel with a simple plot: a woman, Lucy, is in the hospital for a prolonged stay, and her mother is visiting her. Lucy has been estranged from her mother since her marriage. She is grateful for her mother's presence, while at the same time she wants more than her mother is capable of giving her. In other words, the novel is rich in family dynamics and the complexities of the human heart.


What we as readers learn over the course

A Girls Guide to Moving On

By Debbie Macomber
3
Rated by Lisa J.
Dec 22, 2015

Leanne and Nichole are unlikely friends and confidants. When Leanne learns that her son Jake is cheating on his wife Nichole, she is sorely disappointed to find her son following in his father's footsteps. Sean, Leanne's husband has been cheating on her for years and up to this point she has just accepted and ignored his infidelity. After telling Nichole of Jake's indiscretion she admires the way Nichole instantly refuses to accept Jake's behavior and immediately moves to dissolve their marriage. Leanne draws courage from Nichole and leaves her cheating husband of thirty years. The two women

My Real Children

By Jo Walton
4
Rated by Diane H.
Oct 17, 2015

The science fiction aspect to this book is both obvious and subtle. The major plot point of the book is pure science fiction - parallel universes. The main character, Patricia Cowen, experiences two separate lives, stemming from a decision she makes shortly after college.


Once we reach the divergent paths, the chapters alternate between the two realities. From there, the story is pretty straightforward domestic fiction – the daily trials, tribulations, and joys of the main character.


What I found fascinating was how world events differed between these two lifelines. It makes me wonder

A Hundred Summers

By Beatriz Williams
4
Rated by Heather B.
Oct 15, 2015

In 1931, Lily Dane is dragged along to a college football game by her best friend Budgie Byrne, where Lily instantly becomes smitten with Nick Greenwald. Despite the fact that Budgie is generally the popular one, Nick quickly falls for Lily as well. There is one major stumbling block to their happily-ever-after, however--Nick is Jewish, and while Budgie warns Lily that this will be unacceptable to their high society friends and family, Lily refuses to believe it. She concedes that her mother might be a problem, but Lily is convinced that even she can eventually be brought around. It is

A Small Indiscretion

By Jan Ellison
2
Rated by Helen H.
Aug 18, 2015

I’m not sure Ellison’s family drama with its slow reveal shouldn’t be called A Series of Significant Indiscretions, as there are so many. Both past and present. The true title, A Small Indiscretion, leads a reader to believe that our protagonist, Annie Black’s happiness is at risk by the revelation of a past mistake. But really, she and her family might have overcome any part of her past, if only she will behave as the adult she’s grown into instead of the nineteen year old self she fled from twenty years ago.


When we first meet Annie she is a young, single American working in a London

First Frost

By Sarah Addison Allen
3
Rated by Octavia V.
Jul 29, 2015

The Waverley family, Claire and Sydney, both have the gift of helpful magic. They live in the charming town of Bascom, North Carolina where it’s autumn and as temperatures fall, everyone and everything grows restless and problems flourish.


Claire runs Waverley’s Candies out of her kitchen, making handcrafted confections. Business is so good she can’t keep up with demand on her own. When someone offers to buy the business, Claire is stuck in a quandary.


Sydney owns a successful hair salon and knows what hairstyle will look best on anyone. But she’s reluctant to fire a new hire who isn’t

The Curl Up & Dye

By Sharon Sala
4
Rated by Traci M.
Jul 25, 2015

Welcome to Blessings, Georgia!


If you head over to The Curl Up and Dye, Ruby, Vest, and Vera will freshen up your 'do while you catch up on the latest gossip. Did you hear about LilyAnn Bronte? It looks like she's ready to move on after the loss of her fiance. Is it possible the newcomer to town, T.J. Lachlan has sparked her interest? Or, has she finally noticed the boy next door, Mike Dalton?


The Curl Up & Dye is a Southern romance. While generally a sweet romance about a woman rediscovering herself, there are a few instances of violence that are a little unexpected. If you enjoy your

The Bikini Car Wash

By Pamela Morsi
4
Rated by Amanda H.
Jul 7, 2015

Pamela Morsi used to write wonderful Americana romances in the 90s, and I’m glad to see that her humor and poignant understanding of human behavior is still very much in evidence with her shift to contemporaries. The Bikini Car Wash feels a lot like her older historicals because of the small town setting and the ensemble cast. There have never been a ton of authors that wrote good Americana or Frontier Western romances, but Morsi is one of the best because of the way she portrays small town life with a realistic and sympathetic hand. Her characters are always drawn with lots of affectionate

Apr 21, 2015

Glory O'Brien is graduating high school with no idea of where her life is going to go, because she's afraid she'll follow in her mother's steps and commit suicide. One night, Glory drinks a petrified bat and begins to see things--horrible visions of a future in which America is torn in two, and women's rights are shattered to bits. As Glory races to record her visions, she ends up uncovering secrets of her family's past and finding her own (albeit twisted) purpose.


This book destroyed me in the best possible way. A.S. King is a brilliant author and she manages to weave minor characters into

Guilty Pleasures

By Laurell K. Hamilton
4
Rated by Nancy B.
Apr 6, 2015

Vampires in Saint Louis? Yes, and they need help. Guilty Pleasures is the first of the Laurell K. Hamilton’s wildly popular Vampire Hunter stories. Anita Blake is a necromancer, with an affinity for the dead in all their guises, but that doesn’t mean she wants to work for them. When the Master Vampire of Saint Louis sends sexy Jean Paul to procure Anita’s help her main response is, “I don’t date vampires. I kill them.”


I thoroughly enjoyed meeting Anita Blake. In this narrative told entirely from her point of view, Anita comes across as a sharp, strong woman with a biting sense of humor and

Rodin's Lover

By Heather Webb
3
Rated by Katie S.
Mar 20, 2015

Camille Claudel is a woman most women cannot stand – she’s arrogant, loud-mouthed and pretentious. She always has an opinion, the right one, and she’s never afraid to share it. If you think these characteristics annoying and rude in today’s society, imagine its late 19th century Paris where men rule society and women are just prizes on their arms. Predictably, Claudel doesn’t win friends in Heather Webb’s Rodin’s Lover, a fictionalized account of the real-life affair of Claudel and Auguste Rodin.


Claudel is born into a well-off but working-class family who spend their summers in Villeneuve