13 Insightful Contemporary Novels Written By Women

All too often, media is focused on the perspective of men. If you want to stay well-rounded as a reader, it's important to make sure that you're reading books written by women as well. Luckily, there are plenty of talented female authors who have written wonderful books, like the thirteen novels listed here. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

13 Insightful Contemporary Novels Written By Women

Title Author
1. His Favorites Kate Walbert
2. The Cast Amy Blumenfeld
3. Happiness Aminatta Forna
4. Love and Ordinary Creatures Gwyn Hyman Rubio
5. Blame Michelle Huneven
6. Grief Cottage Gail Godwin
7. Putney Sofka Zinovieff
8. The Museum of Modern Love Heather Rose
9. Close to Hugh Marina Endicott
10. The Mourning Parade Dawn Reno Langley
11. The Birth of Love Joanna Kavenna
12. The Next Stephanie Gangi
13. Scout's Honor Dori Ann Dupré

8 Great Films Written & Directed by Women

  1. Julie & Julia (2009)
  2. We Go Way Back (2006)
  3. Sweetie (1989)
  4. Wendy and Lucy (2008)
  5. Thirteen (2003)
  6. You've Got Mail (1998)
  7. An Angel at My Table (1990)
  8. Little Women (1994)

Literary Charities

If you want to spread your love of literature with those in need, then you should consider looking into these non-profit organizations that help kids and teens get access to books and high-quality education.

How to Write a Novel

In Depth

Recent years have seen the rise of a group of talented and perceptive female writers, and some of their exceptional work is listed here. Each of these books provides a compelling look into situations of emotional complexity and moral confusion. These titles explore the labyrinthine and sometimes dark corners of the mind and soul. Here, in no particular order, are thirteen books that offer a unique glimpse into human nature.

In the #1 position is "His Favorites" by Kate Walbert. After a drunken accident kills her best friend, fifteen-year-old Jo is sent to boarding school in New England. What at first seems like a chance to start over turns into a nightmare when Jo becomes the subject of the unwanted attentions of an older teacher. As she becomes the latest in a string of "favorites," Jo must struggle with her feelings of guilt, and with the constraints of a society which covers up or ignores the misdoings of powerful men.

Taking the #2 spot is "The Cast" by Amy Blumenfeld. When ninth-grader Becca fell ill, her friends Jordana, Seth, Lex, and Holly banded together to create a comedy tape in the style of "Saturday Night Live," hoping to cheer her up. Twenty-five years later, the five are still close friends, and they get together to celebrate the anniversary of "Becca Night Live." The celebration, however, is short-lived, as the three-day trip exposes the struggles and traumas of all involved, and tests the strength of a bond that has lasted nearly three decades.

The celebration, however, is short-lived, as the three-day trip exposes the struggles and traumas of all involved, and tests the strength of a bond that has lasted nearly three decades.

At #3 is "Happiness" by Aminatta Forna. An accident on a London bridge leads to the chance encounter of two strangers: Jean, an American scientist, and Attila, a Ghanaian psychiatrist. Both are in London to pursue academic goals, but Attila is also on a more personal mission. He is looking for the daughter of two friends of his, who has gone missing. When Jean becomes involved in his search, she begins to develop a friendship with Attila which will change both their lives.

At #4 is Gwyn Hyman Rubio's "Love and Ordinary Creatures." Caruso is a cockatoo who has spent most of his life owned by a man obsessed with his childhood sweetheart. When he's taken to live with a new owner, the gifted and lovely Clarissa, Caruso falls hopelessly in love with her. All seems well until a new man comes into Clarissa's life. Caruso immediately decides to get rid of this rival by any means necessary. His plan is interrupted, however, by the arrival of a hurricane.

In the #5 spot is "Blame" by Michelle Huneven. History professor Patsy MacLemoore wakes up in jail following an alcoholic bender, and is informed that there are two dead women in her driveway. They've been run over, and Patsy has been driving with a revoked license. Patsy spends the next few decades in prison and Alcoholics Anonymous, attempting to come to terms with what she has done. Then, many years later, a new piece of information comes to light, one which casts doubt on everything.

History professor Patsy MacLemoore wakes up in jail following an alcoholic bender, and is informed that there are two dead women in her driveway.

At #6 is Gail Godwin's "Grief Cottage." When his mother dies, eleven-year-old Marcus is sent to live with his great-aunt Charlotte on a small island off the coast of South Carolina. Charlotte shows him a decrepit house on the island, called "Grief Cottage" by the locals. Fifty years ago, a boy and his parents vanished from the cottage during a hurricane. Marcus starts to visit the house every day, and ultimately makes contact with the ghost of the boy from all those years ago.

At #7 is "Putney" by Sofka Zinovieff. In 1970s London, up-and-coming composer Ralph Boyd receives an invitation from famous novelist Edmund Greenslay to write the score for the stage version of one of his works. As Ralph becomes a part of the Greenslay household, he is particularly friendly with Edmund's nine-year-old daughter Daphne. As Daphne gets older, her relationship with Ralph moves from platonic to romantic, and when she is thirteen, he molests her. Forty years later, Daphne returns to London, and must face what was done to her, as well as the man who did it.

At #8 is "The Museum of Modern Love" by Heather Rose. Arky Levin is a New York film composer who has recently separated from his wife. One day, he goes to the Museum of Modern Art and discovers Marina Abramovic's groundbreaking performance art piece, "The Artist is Present." Arky returns day after day to watch the exhibit and meet the people who are drawn to it in the same way that he is. Through doing so, he begins to understand some important truths about love, art, and himself.

Arky returns day after day to watch the exhibit and meet the people who are drawn to it in the same way that he is.

Taking the #9 spot is "Close to Hugh" by Marina Endicott, which follows one week in the life of Hugh Argylle, an art gallery owner who takes an unfortunate fall from a ladder and receives a strange vision of all the things that are wrong in the lives of the people closest to him. As Hugh sets out to fix these problems, another drama is unfolding in the younger generation, as the children of Hugh and his friends deal with the struggles of adolescence. These two stories evolve in parallel to one another as both children and parents face an uncertain future.

At #10 is "The Mourning Parade" by Dawn Reno Langley. Natalie DeAngelo's life is torn apart when her two sons are killed in a school shooting. Looking for an escape, she volunteers to work as a veterinarian in a Thai elephant sanctuary. There, she meets an injured elephant named Sophie, whose experiences have left her angry and suspicious of human beings. Natalie struggles to communicate with Sophie and to overcome her own enormous loss, searching for some way in which both of them can heal.

In the #11 spot is "The Birth of Love" by Joanna Kavenna. This book covers three stories over three centuries, each having to do with childbirth. In 1865 Vienna, Dr. Ignasz Semmelweiss has been committed to an insane asylum for suggesting that hand washing for doctors can reduce mortality among birthing mothers. In modern London, Bridget Hughes prepares herself for home birth. In 2135, a nameless prisoner is on trial for attempting to arrange a live human birth in a world ravaged by overpopulation, where forced sterilization is the norm. These three tales explore the experience of motherhood across centuries and continents.

In modern London, Bridget Hughes prepares herself for home birth.

At #12 is "The Next" by Stephanie Gangi. In the last days of her stage 4 cancer, Joanna DeAngelis is abandoned by her much younger lover, Ned, for another woman. After she dies, she has nothing but revenge on her mind. Even as her daughters and her dog mourn for her, Joanna is tracking Ned through Manhattan, looking for an opportunity for retribution. As she pursues her errand of vengeance, she revisits many of the scenes and people from her life, and begins to reconsider what she wants to do with her ghostly existence.

At #13 is "Scout's Honor" by Dori Ann Dupre. In August of 1983, fourteen-year-old Scout Webb is living a peaceful life in her small North Carolina town. She's mostly busy playing baseball with her best friend Charlie and anticipating spending a few weeks at Camp Judah, a Christian summer camp. More than anything, she wants to see Brother Doug, the adult lifeguard at Camp Judah and Scout's secret crush. But what happens that summer at camp alters the course of her life forever, as she feels doomed to repeat behaviors that cause her pain.