13 Books That Inspire Modern Women To Speak Out

It’s as important as ever to have a strong voice as a woman in the 21st century. These authors have not forgotten.

It’s easy to lay back and relax in the 21st century, where everything seems more or less okay for women. Luckily, these authors inspire myself and others in having a confident and independent stance, whether you’re bringing up children or working through your mental health.

#1 Searching for God in the Garbage by Bracha Goetz

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Experience what goes on inside the mind of a Harvard grad who broke the habits that were imprisoning her in this raw, candid, and fascinating memoir about overcoming food addictions. Learn how to fill the inner emptiness by nourishing your uniquely beautiful soul so it can shine strongly.

#2 Confessions of a Bad, Ugly Singer by Collette McLafferty

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Confessions of a Bad, Ugly Singer follows veteran singer Collette McLafferty who randomly found herself in a $10,000,000 lawsuit filed against her after a one night gig in a P!NK cover band. Although she had never met the Plaintiff, a personal injury attorney from Long Island, it was alleged she conspired to steal the attorney’s idea to pay tribute to the pop star.

It was additionally stated in legal papers that McLafferty was “too unattractive” to perform in the band. Although this was a minor detail of the case, The New York Post ran the headline “Singer Sued for Being Too Old and Too Ugly for PINK Cover Band”. This fake news version of the lawsuit went viral worldwide, even though her age was never mentioned in the lawsuit.

McLafferty took her fight to Albany to talk to elected officials about frivolous lawsuits, which inspired the Frivolous Litigation Reduction Act aka, “Collette’s Law”. Additionally, she started a campaign urging women to freely talk about their age with the hashtag #feelnoshame while challenging ageism in the entertainment industry and media. She tattooed the lyrics from Jeff Buckley’s “New Year’s Prayer”- “Feel No Shame for What You Are” with her age at the time: 41.

Confessions of a Bad, Ugly Singer” is a true story of a journey of self love and speaking out.

#3 How Many Times Do I Have to Repeat Myself? Simple Steps to Stress-Free Parenting and Better Family Relationships

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I believe this is a great book for empowering women to take back control of their children and households from chaos while focus on increasing the enjoyment in their lives. This book presents parenting tips and strategies in a user-friendly format with ideas, examples, and reasons why these strategies work well. The strategies help to build better family relationships, increase respect and understanding, decrease time disciplining, and increase the time to spend together having fun as a family.

#4 Mature Sexual Intimacy by Maryann Karinch

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Women’s sexual health after menopause has been largely ignored by many physicians and, even worse, ignored by women themselves. Mature Sexual Intimacy gives clear woman-to-woman guidance on how to boost both desire for and enjoyment of sexual activities in the second half of life. It gives women a vocabulary to have meaningful conversations about sexual health with partners, friends, and physicians. This book is the author’s follow-on Sex and Cancer, featuring the results of the first-and only-study of sexual dysfunction after gynecologic cancers.

#5 You Can Do It!: Tools to Better Manage Your Healthcare

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I recommend the book here because it helps give women an effective set of tools to use and how to use them in almost any healthcare situation. We can have a voice in our healthcare.

The writing of this book was funded by a grant from the 2018 Women’s Empowerment Fund of the Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara. The purpose of this fund is to support women in taking action to promote the well-being of women in our diverse community and beyond. The book has no religious content.

As its author, I wrote the book to teach women how to advocate for ourselves to get better healthcare. I am passionate about helping women be heard by and cared for appropriately by the medical community. Gender bias is real, difficult to overcome and disproportionately affects women. The book was reviewed by female doctors, nurses, psychologists, and patients before publication. Their reaction? We NEED this book!

I will add that as a woman receiving the grant I was enabled both to write the book and start a health advocacy business. Empowerment indeed!

#6 Emotions Of The Mind: Breaking The Cycle by Tamela Todd

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I am a Mental Health Advocate and Author of “Emotions of The Mind” serves as a guide on how to thrive despite the trauma. It will also empower readers and raise awareness about the impact of mental and emotional health issues. The transparency of my journey will inspire readers to evaluate their own mental and emotional health.

#7 S(EX) by KJ Richards

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This book is about my journey in dealing with the mental, emotional and psychological abuse of being married to a narcissist who also battles sex addiction. I share my highs and lows in the relationship and show readers that there is a chance to heal and hope. Readers feel my hurt throughout the book, but also feel my hope. It’s an easy read, but takes you on an emotional journey that you can easily see yourself in, with hopes of rising above in your own toxic relationship(s).

#8 Emotional Detox for Anxiety by Sherianna Boyle

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The process teaches us the power of our emotions, how to use them in our favor as well as ways women might be holding themselves back form experiencing a life of joy and ease.

#9 The Huntress of Thornbeck Forrest by Melanie Dickerson

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Some might not think to look to a medieval fairytale setting for a book on female empowerment but they’re missing out. This gem by Melanie Dickerson casts the leading lady as Robinhood. Odette cannot bear to see the starvation and struggles of those around her so she is willing to do whatever it takes to bring about change for those in need. Even though she has to go against the system her desire to help prompts her to defy the local authorities. It’s a fun read that can inspire change and while written at the young adult level it can be enjoyed by children if read to, and adults alike. Books like this should not be swept under the rug. In this particular case, Odette stood up for herself and what was right even if it was socially unacceptable at the time.

#10 The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

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This is such an amazing, thought provoking and gut wrenching read. I could identify with Starr is many ways while reading this story. Starr is the key eye witness to the murder of her childhood friend, Khalil and she’s put in a tough position. Everyone is so quick to say what they would do in certain situations but when you’re point in that situation, it isn’t as easy as it seems. She goes through a lot of emotions dealing with the death of her friend and I felt her pain with her. As a person of color I’ve had several thoughts like Starr. I know what it’s like to be judge by the color of my skin. Having to act a certain way so you won’t be classified as the angry black girl. The automatic assumption I live in the ghetto, I don’t.

This book was such a powerful read and reflected heavily on current situations. I encourage everyone to read this book! White, black, brown, yellow, red, polka dot. Everyone can benefit from reading this powerful read. For a debut book Thomas knocked it out of the park! I loved her writing, the plot and the flow of the story. I felt like I was living it out alongside Starr and her family while reading. I’m looking forward to reading more books by her in the future!

#11 Accelerate your impact: Action-Based Strategies to Pave Your Professional Path

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Accelerate your Impact: Action-Based Strategies to Pave Your Professional Path is a book that empowers women to define their goals and align their actions to increase their impact! It is filled with meaningful advice and insights to why women have traditionally been in middle management from over 200 whitepapers, articles and authors. There are over 50 book reviews on Amazon for you to see how women have used the book as a tool to make their desires know and work toward their desired level of impact!

#12 The Working Woman’s GPS by JJ Digeronimo

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Are you plodding along stuck in the same-old patterns? Has your energy up and left? Are you overworked and overcommitted? Do you let fear keep you from taking the very risk that could energize your life? JJ DiGeronimo realized that during her pursuit to achieve society’s plan for women she was led astray from her best self. She then initiated a life evaluation that effectively enabled her to recalculate her course. In A Working Woman’s GPS, When the Plan to Have it All Leads You Astray, DiGeronimo shares her story and the stories of many women who have worked through their Plan to have it ALL. Through a collection of stories, exercises and advice, DiGeronimo helps women rediscover their own journey and bring energy, wisdom and inspiration back into their lives. In this engaging book, DiGeronimo invites readers to envision and become the women they are supposed to be.

#13 Joy from Fear by Carla Marie Manly

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This book encourages women to dive into any obstacles that are holding them back so that they can grow into themselves and be their strongest and best versions of themselves (AND most joyful)!

If you find yourself running away from fear, you’re running in the wrong direction. Fear demands that we move toward it, face it, and hear its messages. When we fail to do this, the price is high—chronic anxiety, sleeplessness, damaged relationships, skyrocketing pharmaceutical use, and more. In her enlightening book Joy from Fear, clinical psychologist Dr. Carla Marie Manly explains that fear is not the enemy we thought it was; fear, when faced with awareness, is the powerful ally and best friend we all need.

Dr. Manly’s work is firmly based in science but goes far beyond presenting the dry facts. Joy from Fear offers page after page of real-life examples, insights, easy-to-use tools, and life-changing exercises. Coining the term transformational fear, Dr. Manly illuminates the importance of embracing fear’s messages for a transformed life filled with freedom and lasting happiness.

Written by Eve O'Rourke

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