Harper's Bazaar India


I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou: “She uses her autobiography to explore subjects such as identity, rape, racism, and literacy.”—Shaili Chopra. We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: “Through centuries women have walked new roads armed with nothing but their vision. In this novella, one of the world’s greatest writers brings alive the intersectionality of feminism for men and women, girls and boys.”—Meghna Pant. Reset by Ellen Pao: “Her experiences, lessons, and outcomes of dealing with a case of gender discrimination against her employer, as someone who attended A-list education institutions and still faced scorn at the peak of her career in the Silicon Valley.”—SC. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë: “It’s a great journey into the emotions and experiences of the protagonist from making choices, living up to society, and finding herself.”—SC.

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo: “A compilation of women who broke the glass ceiling and achieved many unusual feats, from Anita Borg in computer science to Amelia Earhart in aviation. Its crisp summary on each woman makes for an inspiring read.”—SC. The Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak: “In this philosophical book, that is relevant to contemporary life, Shafak throws into sharp relief an untold aspect of Rumi’s life.”—MP. The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi: “With the deftness of a surgeon and the earnestness of a schoolgirl, Satrapi shows us what lies between fear and courage is only silence.”—MP. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood: “It explores themes of women subjugated by misogyny in a patriarchal society and how they attempt to gain independence.”—SC. The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf: “It underscores why we need more ideas of sexuality, beauty, and the female body, and why, while critiquing representation, we must not shame sex and the body.”—MP. Aerogrammes and Other Stories by Tania James: “What really makes us is what we often forget. It is these ghosts, these forgotten memories, which James’s stories bring to the front.”—MP.

Lajja by Taslima Nasrin: “An unflinching expression of how religious sentiments affect politics and people of a nation. The controversial book also sketches the kind of patriarchy women were subject to.”—SC. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand: “For showing us how to write and how to live. For Howard Roark, who I’ve looked for in every man I’ve met. For making struggle and obscurity sexy. For daring us to think.”—MP. Indira by Sagarika Ghose: “For reinventing a leader oft written about and putting her and her father Jawaharlal Nehru through a feminist lens.”—SC. Prison and Chocolate Cake by Nayantara Sahgal: “She recounts the experience of being an observer of a time when Mahatma Gandhi was leading the movement for independence.”—SC. Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro: “These tales of loss and love, bone-dry wit, derailment and hope, will plunge into the recesses of your soul. You’ll never be whole again and you’ll never feel more complete.”—MP. Small Acts of Freedom by Gurmehar Kaur: “A memoir of losing her father when she was two, what it meant to grow up with her mom and grandmom.”—SC

Delta of Venus by Anaïs Nin: “For being an artist and muse in equal measure, and for embodying the heady early 20th-century Parisian dream of cafés, love affairs, casual genius, and unbridled passion.”—MP. Widows of Vidarbha by Kota Neelima: “For extracting the realities of how farmer suicides affect those who have died the least. How the wives and families of the dead farmers resurrect, or give up on, their lives.”—SC. The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni: “From the princess of Panchala, kingdom of spire and shining dome, to the queen with five husbands, this book pays ode to Draupadi’s blazing eyes and rankled bosom, as much as it does to her gentle vitality and lovelorn heart.”—MP. milk and honey by Rupi Kaur: “What’s the greatest thing a woman should learn? That since day one she’s already had everything she needs within herself. It’s the world that convinced her she did not. This poem tells you what this fantastic collection of poetry is like.”—SC. Difficult Daughters by Manju Kapur: “For this: ‘I hate the word ‘simple’. Nobody has any business to live in the world and know nothing about its ways.’”—MP. The Cosmopolitans by Anjum Hasan: “It is in art that we are truly free spirits. Hasan embodies this notion by painting a canvas of modern Indian life where vol-au-vents meet idli-vada without sublimating its texture.”—MP. A Bad Character by Deepti Kapoor: “Show me a woman without guilt and I’ll show you a man. In this neo-noir novel, Kapoor brings up life’s forgotten moments, fragments of secrets, and the magic and madness of raw sexuality.”—MP.