International Women’s Day

image by Annie Spratt via Unsplash

Happy International Women’s Day

I thought I’d do a little post about some of my favourite women authors to celebrate.


Jane Austen – I’ve loved her books since I had to read Pride & Prejudice for my Higher English.   My favourite is Persuasion for it’s breadth of characters and wry wit and because Ann is by far the most likeable of all the Austen heroines. .


Alice Walker – The Colour Purple has long been a favourite of mine.  I’ve read it several times and thought there wasn’t much more I could get out of it (other than the sheer joy of reading that beautiful flow of consciousness prose).  But recently it popped up on Borrowbox as an audiobook read by Alice Walker herself and her reading brought a whole new perspective to the book.  I can highly recommend that audio version.  (Borrowbox is a service used by some libraries to provide free audio and e-books to their customers – check out your local library –  they might use it, or a similar service)


Val McDermid – the queen of gritty Scottish crime fiction.  I first discovered her by reading  Common Murder loosely based around the Greenham Common women. She’s brought so many great, feisty women detectives to the page. (although The Mermaids Singing does make you want to read it with your eyes shut). And she does all her plotting in her head, apparently.  Genius level skills. Plus she’s just a really nice person. 


Elly Griffiths – she manages to write 3 separate crime series – all excellent. The Ruth Galloway stories are about a forensic archeologist in Norfolk.  The Mephisto and Stephens books are set in post-war Brighton, and there’s the Harbinder Kaur books set in Shoreham in the present day. Oh and she writes a series for children too. I don’t know how she finds the time!


Laurie R King – She writes a fantastic series re-imagining Sherlock Holmes and told from the point of view of his wife Mary Russell. There’s loads of historical detail and deft plotting.  They’re just delightful.


These are just a few highlights from many, many favourite women authors – Toni Morrison, Kate Atkinson, Robin Hobb, Becky Chambers, Ursula LeGuin, Ann Cleeves, Jacqueline Winspear, Jodi Taylor……  


I could go on and on but I think you’ve probably had enough. I’m sure I’ve forgotten someone very important.  Who are your favourites?

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