The verdict is in. Of the many Women’s fiction books I’ve read recently, below are some of the most captivating. Some of these books are just hitting the bookstores; others have been around for a while. But, the thing about a really good book is that, unlike the latest fashion, it never goes out of style. I’ve also found that when I start discussing books with someone, the avid reader recommends new and old books.
So below is an excellent assortment of books women, in particular, will enjoy – keep scrolling.
Historical Fiction Books For Women
The House Is On Fire by Rachel Beanland
True events inspire this story and features four memorable characters: an upper-middle-class widow who saved countless lives that night; an abused slave who sees the chaos as an opportunity to strive for a better existence; a theater stagehand who witnessed the events firsthand; and a blacksmith who sought to buy his freedom. The narrative is captivating and thought-provoking, offering a glimpse into the lives of these individuals and the circumstances surrounding their actions.
The story’s main characters effectively illustrate the unjust system of slavery and the societal view of women. Remarkable research and vivid characterizations make this exceptional historical fiction an excellent choice for book clubs.
The Tobacco Wives by Adele Myers
The tobacco industry in North Carolina in 1946 was aware of the dangers of tobacco use. Yet, they proceeded to market cigarettes as safe for everyone, including pregnant women and their unborn babies. This unethical behavior highlights the industry’s disregard for the well-being of its consumers and is both fascinating and concerning. This is good women’s fiction and Adels Meyer’s debut novel.
The main character, a young woman named Maggie, discovers the truth and faces a moral dilemma of staying quiet to protect others or revealing the facts that will save lives.
Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl by Renee Rosen
This book has two incredible storylines – one about Estee Lauder’s journey from being broke to achieving remarkable success and another about Gloria’s fight to overcome a major scandal that damaged her reputation and left her struggling financially. Estee and Gloria are courageous, intelligent, and determined to break free from society’s constraints. This wonderful, engaging historical fiction is one of the best books I read this month. Perfect women’s fiction. I loved it.
An American Beauty by Shana Able
This story follows a young woman from abject poverty, working in an illegal gambling parlor, to becoming one of the wealthiest women in the country. A true story also inspires it – and a beautiful setting and fantastic characters make you want to keep turning the pages. Great for those who enjoy reading about strong women who know what they want and go for it.
Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell
O’Farrell reimagines the tragic story of Shakespeare’s son, Hamlet, who died of the plague at age eleven. At its heart, this is the story of loss and grieving; through this, readers gain a unique insight into the trials and tribulations faced in the 1850s. These events inspired the legendary play Hamlet, written by William Shakespeare just four years later.
I recommend this book to fans of Maggie O’Farrell and those who enjoy engaging, insightful historical and literary fiction or books by an award-winning author. This book won the 2020 Women’s Prize for Fiction award.
Lady Tan’s Circle of Women by Lisa See
I loved this book. I love all of Lisa See’s books, but this is one of her best – captivating from start to finish. Set in 15th Century China, it’s a tale of culture, friendship, love, and heartache and is impossible to put down. Recommend to Lisa See’s fans and those who love books steeped in tradition or stories that show the strong bonds of female friendship. Lisa See is, without a doubt, my favorite of the best-selling authors. I think I’ve read all her books; they are all perfect women’s fiction.
The Spectacular By Fiona Davis
The Spectacular tells the story of Marion, an accomplished dancer and dance instructor who defies her family’s wishes and accepts a coveted spot as a Radio City Music Rockette. The book poignantly illustrates Marion’s inner struggle to balance her love for her family with her desire to live her own life and pursue her passion. I recommend this to fans of Fiona Davis and historical fiction fans. You’ll also love it if you love New York City or the theater.
Symphony of Secrets by Brendan Slocumb
An enthralling and captivating story with a compelling mystery, intriguing characters who are both dynamic and multi-faceted, and a fascinating exploration of social and historical elements. Excellent historical fiction that will keep readers invested from start to finish. One of my favorite books this year and definitely hard to put down. If you enjoyed The Violin Conspiracy, don’t miss this one. This one is not only great women’s fiction but my favorite historical novel I read this month.
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
I’m a huge fan of Jane Austen, and Pride and Prejudice is definitely one of my favorite works by her. I’ve read the book and watched several versions of the movie. I love all the characters, especially firey Elizabeth and the unapproachable Mr. Darcy. It’s a wonder his heart ever thawed. This is a fun engaging read, and Jane Austen’s work is binge-worthy in any form – books or movies. This is classic women’s fiction!
Contemporary Fiction and Romance Books For Women
It Happened One Summer by Tessa Bailey
If you enjoy rom-coms and love a good opposites attract love story, you’ll have fun with this light, engaging read. Spoiled rich girl Piper meets grumpy, down-to-earth Brendan. It’s a nice mix of over-the-top steamy sex, reconnecting with your past, and maybe learning something new about yourself.
Meet Me at the Lake by Carley Fortune
Fern has vowed never to take over her family’s resort, determined to follow her own passions in life. But, after her mother’s death, she finds herself back there and struggling to decide if she will continue running the place. Additionally, she is dealing with the emotional fallout of an old flame popping back into her life. This is an excellent solid character-driven book, perfect for those who love romance novels.
Book Lovers by Emily Henry
The witty banter is one of the best things about this book. The romance adds an engaging element to the story without overpowering it, making it a great book for fans of women’s fiction and those who enjoy a well-done love story. This book has some serious issues but is light and engaging overall. Perfect for beach, vacation, or a lazy Sunday afternoon.
People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry
This heartwarming romance will captivate readers with its charming mix of sizzling chemistry and clever dialogue. It follows the story of two best friends who are complete opposites and enjoy vacationing together and chatting for hours. However, their close relationship suddenly falls apart, and they make one last-ditch effort to save their friendship and make a fresh start. This second chance at love rom-com is the perfect feel-good read with engaging characters and an endearing storyline.
All the Days of Summer by Nancy Thayer
There are many layers to this engaging book. Heather, at age 47, is getting a divorce; her son Ross, just graduating from college, has a serious girlfriend, but unfortunately, she and Heather get off on the wrong foot. And she may have found love again.
So, you can see, this book had so much in it, family drama, beautiful settings, secrets, and so much more. I loved Heather and thought she was a great mother, and although she initially struggled with her future daughter-in-law, her heart was always in the right place. Perfect for those who love books about strong women who refuse to accept the mundane in search of their perfect happy life. This one won’t have a major plot twist, but it’s a great beach or vacation read. This is another perfect women’s fiction book.
Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner
One of the captivating themes throughout this beautifully written saga is the journey of self-discovery, the pursuit of finding your true self and staying true to it. This is especially evident in the characters of Jo and Bethie, whose journey is fraught with mistakes and wrong choices, some of which are unavoidable due to society’s constrictions. Ultimately, this is a thought-provoking and engaging story of resilient women and a good book for women.
The Measure by Nikki Erlick
Get ready for a unique and thought-provoking story that will capture your imagination. In this story, everyone twenty-two and older receives a box containing a string representing their lifespan. What would you do if given the option to know how long you will live? This exciting narrative explores how different people react to this profound question. I recommend this book to those who like intriguing, unique books.
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
This is an interesting story about terrorists taking over a social event in an attempt to kidnap the president. The president has, however, decided to skip the affair – so there is a standoff.
But, on a deeper level, it’s about the human condition. During four months of captivity, people bond and form friendships, even falling in love despite the difficult situation. Beautifully written women’s fiction, it’s perfect for those who enjoy a literary read.
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
The story chronicles the lives of four college graduates as they navigate through adulthood. It’s a polarizing book that stirs intense emotions. It’s 700-page length and sensitive themes, such as self-harm, substance abuse, and sexual and physical abuse, make it challenging to read. While it may not resonate with everyone, one thing is sure – it’s a compelling read that will leave an impression on you.
Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin
The main character is a young woman, Aviva, who has an affair with a married Congressman. After the scandal breaks, life goes on as usual for the congressman, but Aviva’s life is turned upside down, ruined. Sound familiar? Who doesn’t remember Monica Lewinsky?
As always, I loved the deeply flawed characters and the intense topic. Still, the writing style is light, making it an easy, enjoyable read.- with a message or two.
Celebrity Book Club Picks
Cassandra In Reverse by Holly Smale
A Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick. This light, engaging read has a lot going for it. A neurodivergent main character who is endearing and quirky – and she can time travel. She’s also realizing that she is different from others and trying to accept it. It’s heartwarming and inspiring to read.
Ink Blood Sister Scribe by Emma Törzs
A Good Morning America Book Club Pick. This is a captivating book about magic, where the magical libraries, books, and spells are just as intriguing as the bond between three unique and dynamic sisters. With an unpredictable and emotional storyline, readers will be entertained from start to finish. Recommend for those who like women’s fiction and fantasy.
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