The Most Iconic Books from Female Authors This Decade
The gender equality movement has been a series of small steps, slowly taking women’s rights into alignment with men’s.
While there is still work to be done, the past decade has definitely made much larger strides in equanimity.
Women of the last decade seem to have discovered their voice and demanded to be heard.
It should come as no surprise that the biggest books of the last decade have come from female authors.
Here are five books – by female authors – from the past decade that have made their mark in history.
There are so many things to love in Gillian Flynn’s breakout novel, Gone Girl. Flynn’s novel didn’t just make its mark in its own story, it created a new standard by which mysteries are told.
The psychological thriller: domestic noir genre has crept up in countless Gone Girl copycats, although it’s virtually impossible to compete with the original.
Flynn’s Gone Girl gave thriller authors the template by which the unreliable narrator is written.
Containing captivating prose, an ongoing foreboding, and perfectly timed reveals, Gone Girl gave readers a twist worthy of The Sixth Sense.
We believe this one will stand the test of time.
In Order to Live by Yeonmi Park
Born in the North Korean city of Hyesan, near the Chinese border, Yeonmi Park was raised in constant hunger and deplorable poverty.
At school Park was taught to hate North Korea’s enemies, and to trust nobody other than Kim Jong-Il. In Order to Live gives a rare insight into what the people of North Korea endure.
In Order To Live documents Yeonmi’s dangerous escape from North Korea – the human traffickers who abused her, and her first taste of freedom in South Korea.
While chiefly a tale of survival, it is also a reminder of the power of hope.
Now working as a human rights activist, Park’s memoir stands out not only for what she overcame but also for what the rest of the world ignores.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
The Goldfinch is a coming-of-age tale marred by tragedy. Part page-turning mystery, part heart-wrenching drama, Donna Tartt’s novel delivers us one of the most sympathetic narrators in fiction.
It’s easy for readers to see why the word masterpiece is thrown about in reference to the story.
When 13-year-old Theo Decker miraculously survives the museum bombing that kills his mother, his father abandons him, and he moves in with a wealthy friend.
His whole life upended, Theo’s only link to his mother, a mysteriously captivating painting, becomes the catalyst for his entrance into the insular art community.
The Goldfinch tells a tale of love, survival, obsession and re-invention.
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
In the last decade, Jesmyn Ward’s voice has risen.
Her novels on black life in the South of the United States have made her the first female author to win two National Book Awards for fiction.
Sing, Unburied, Sing, was Ward’s crowning achievement of the decade.
Sing, Unburied, Sing follows a vulnerable, drug-abusing black woman named Leonie on a road trip with her two children to bring their white father home from prison.
The complex story that follows brings readers through past and present, uncovering trauma in this unforgettable story of family, hope, and struggle.
Three Women by Lisa Taddeo
Lisa Taddeo spent eight years travelling across the USA to find, listen to and write the stories of Sloane, Maggie and Lina.
Focusing that much time on subjects lives, relationships, and desires is unheard of in a journalistic sense. However, Taddeo’s gamble pays off in Three Women.
The story covers illegal relationships with teachers, divorce, polyamory and more.
Three Women questions the boundaries put on women by ourselves, the patriarchy and the law.
Taddeo’s immersion in the story gives it a surprising frankness, even as she explores desire, heartbreak, and infatuation.
Both captivating and important, Three Women feels like a reminder to women everywhere that we’re not alone.
Who were your favourite female authors of the 2010s?