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Archive for 'Biography'

Monster, She Wrote: The Women Who Pioneered Horror and Speculative Fiction

Monster, She Wrote: The Women Who Pioneered Horror and Speculative Fiction (2019) Lisa Kröger and Melanie R. Anderson It’s (somewhat) common knowledge that Mary Shelly wrote the first SFF book: Frankenstein. But there were so many other women at the start of the horror, science fiction, and speculative fiction genres, and this book tells you […]

Women in White Coats: How the First Women Doctors Changed the World of Medicine

Women in White Coats: How the First Women Doctors Changed the World of Medicine (2021) Olivia Campbell Although primarily about three women: Elizabeth Blackwell, Elizabeth Garrett Anderson and Sophia Jex-Blake, other women who were among the first to attend (or attempt to attend) medical school. Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman to receive a medical […]

18 Tiny Deaths: The Untold Story of Frances Glessner Lee and the Invention of Modern Forensics

18 Tiny Deaths: The Untold Story of Frances Glessner Lee and the Invention of Modern Forensics (2020) Bruce Goldfarb Frances Glessner Lee, daughter of wealthy Chicago socialites, ended up becoming the mother of Forensic Medicine. However, she did so not only without a medical degree, but she didn’t even have a high school diploma, teaching […]

Dead Men Do Tell Tales: The Strange and Fascinating Cases of a Forensic Anthropologist

Dead Men Do Tell Tales: The Strange and Fascinating Cases of a Forensic Anthropologist (1994) Dr. William Maples I’ll be honest. I bought this on sale, so the fact I only paid a dollar or two for it colors my opinion. If I’d paid full price, I’d have liked it a lot less. Take that […]

She-Wolves: The Women Who Ruled England Before Elizabeth

She-Wolves: The Women Who Ruled England Before Elizabeth (2011) Helen Castor This was my most recent “read before bed” book, so it took me quite awhile to finish, and I can’t say that a lot of it will stick with me, but it was interesting. The book looks at queens who attempted to rule England […]

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir)

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir) (2012) Jenny Lawson As readers of my twitter stream and blog already know, I love The Bloggess. I fully admit she isn’t for every. After all, this is the woman whose tag line could (and should) be “knock knock motherfucker” But if she does amuse you […]

The Fearless Mrs. Goodwin

The Fearless Mrs. Goodwin (2011) Elizabeth Mitchell This had the potential to be a fabulous story: Mrs Goodwin was the first woman to become an official New York City police detective. She worked undercover helping to take down not just fake spiritualists and others who preyed on women, but also dangerous criminals. Instead, the writing […]

Tender at the Bone

Tender at the Bone (1998) Ruth Reichl I’ve heard Ruth Reichl interviewed several times, and I’d heard her relate stories that were excerpts of the book, so I eventually picked up the book, but then it languished on the shelf for an embarrassingly long time. Here’s the bit I heard that first drew my attention […]

Reading Lolita in Tehran

Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books (2003) Azar Nafisi Azar Nafisi lived and taught English literature in Tehran during the upheaval of the Islamic Revolution. Her memoir is not only of her memories of that time, but of how attitudes towards women changed, and how not just she–but also her students–used English literature […]

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