One of my personal goals for this year is to read more books written by women. Recently, I realized that most of the books I count as favorites were written by men: THE GREAT GATSBY, THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, and NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR. While there’s nothing wrong with reading books written by men, I think female-authored books are too often overlooked.
Last year, I powered through all three of Gillian Flynn’s novels: DARK PLACES (my favorite!), SHARP OBJECTS, and the famous GONE GIRL. I love every page of those books. Again, the fact that they’re written by a woman has little to do with their literary merit, but it means a lot to me on a personal level. Reading those books made me feel like I had a real shot at being published, woman or not. Also, it doesn’t hurt that Gillian Flynn is amazing.
After hearing about BIG LITTLE LIES (which I still need to read), I decided to check out Liane Moriarty. I was looking for something on Audibleto occupy my mind while I drove home for Christmas. Somehow, I stumbled upon WHAT ALICE FORGOT.
In this novel, Alice Love faints during spinning class and hits her head hard enough to rattle her memory. Ten years’ worth of thoughts, feelings, and personal growth go out the window with the injury. Alice thinks she’s back in 1998, pregnant with her first child and happily married to the love of her life. She must sort through the fragments of her shattered mind while carrying out her “normal” life–one in which she’s a Type A, sophisticated and separated mum to three beautiful children. Along the way, she learns how much can change in ten years, and how relationships can wax and wane with the passage of time. Above all, she learns more about herself than she ever imagined.
I didn’t know what to expect from this book going in. It’s the first thing I’ve read of Moriarty’s, and I couldn’t stop listening (since I got it on Audible). I found that this novel made me look forward to my daily commute, which is no easy task. I’m not sure who to recommend this book to because I think almost everyone would enjoy it. My only complaint is that it felt a little deus ex machina toward the end. Still, the narrative itself more than makes up for that. If you’re looking for a gripping, somewhat suspenseful read, get this book as soon as possible.
What other female authors do you think I should read? How do you feel about WHAT ALICE FORGOT?