Women’s History Month Books to Read

Celebrate Women’s History Month on BookBaby Bookshop! Whether you read an inspiring autobiography, an exciting fiction novel, or a trendy new cookbook, you are making an impact by directly supporting women’s work on this fair trade bookstore. Check out this list and learn about some of our picks that recognize women this month.

The Viola Factor by Sheridan Brown

(Biography / History)

The Viola Factor chronicles the life of an extraordinary woman who fought for what was fair and just. In the book, you’re taken back to a time when the country was divided as it’s ever been. The American Civil War recently came to an end, and the country was attempting to grow and heal after from the war’s darkness. Viola Knapp Ruffner at the time was a school teacher, a mother, a wife, and a friend.

With her mother’s dying wish, she left her New England roots and embarked on journey to fight for the justice and rightful education of the enslaved and once enslaved. She was recognized as one of Booker T. Washington’s friend and a model for life. In this captivating account of a remarkable woman’s life, you’ll see how Viola realized her own principles to fulfill her future goals. Most notably, fate leads her to a newly freed slave with a desire to read and become a difference maker in a country desperate for leaders.

Making Sense of My Life in Science by Evelyn Fox Keller

(Biography & Autobiography / Science & Technology)

Evelyn Fox Keller is a feminist trailblazer who pushed the boundaries of science and revolutionized academia. After an illustrious career and fourteen published books, she reflects on her life, influences, successes, and struggles.

Her memoir is one of a wandering academic who managed a long and successful career without ever quite answering the question of who she is or where she belongs. She was trained as a theoretical physicist at a time when women didn’t “do physics”. Unable to find a supportive adviser, she moved into the new field of molecular biology as it just got off the ground. Eventually, she returned to physics but joined a small interdisciplinary effort to develop mathematical models of biological systems. Soon, she began to think of herself as a dual citizen of the proverbial two cultures – science and humanities.

The trajectory was hardly straightforward, and her life story is both riveting and inspiring. This is truly a remarkable story about a difference-maker who paved the way for women in science.

Tehran to Miami by Donya Ziraksari 

(Biography & Autobiography / Women)

Both an inspiring personal memoir and also an impactful resource that shares the complexities of Iranian history and traditions, Tehran to Miami is a must-read non-fiction masterpiece. In the book, author Donya Ziraksari shares her experience suffering religious persecution in 1980s Iran. This unique survival story highlights the plight and difficulties experienced by the largest Iranian minority, women.

As you read this book, you gain first-hand insight into Persian homes during the 1980s and 90s. Through tragic but captivating detail, the book reveals the oppressive plight under the Iranian government.

Women faced a bleak reality. Stripped of their rights, they were forced to cover themselves in public, often lashed in the streets, or imprisoned if not wearing a decent hijab. They were not granted divorce rights, even in the case of infidelity or abuse. Donya Ziraksari is a masterful storyteller who writes with honesty and passion, and she successfully takes on the challenge of speaking on behalf of an entire Iranian generation.

This triumphant memoir captures the profound challenges that people faced and eventually adapted to so they could survive. Ziraksari is a refugee herself, and her ability to tell this story with such vigor is an inspiration to others who are facing similar struggles. There is no other memoir like this, as it presents the myriad of Iranian cultures and traditions through personal stories and approachable language.

Mother Teresa: Inspirations from a Friend by Hannelore Angela Benjamin

(Biography & Autobiography / Religious)

Mother Teresa was one of the greatest humanitarians of our age. In this remarkable book, Hannelore Angela Benjamin recounts a Saint’s life, and shares inspirations and personal confidences from one of the most admired missionaries of all time.

The book chronicles an extraordinary journey of friendship and offers anecdotes about Mother Teresa that give us a unique insight into her inspiring character. Benjamin makes us a part of the conversations she held with Mother Teresa, from a flight over Europe, to the gardens of the Missionaries of Charity in Rome, to a National Prayer Breakfast in Washington DC, and in the process brings out the humor, humility and devotion of this modern day saint.

I recommend this book to all looking to learn more about a remarkable woman who touched so many lives. There will never be someone else like Mother Teresa, and this book reminds us of her life’s profound impact.

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