Every Book I finished in 2017, in order

This year I had a goal to read books by female authors. I read 58 different books, including 29 novels and 17 memoirs; I try to alternate between fiction and non-fiction. There are many books on this list I would recommend and there is exactly one book on this list that I hated and struggled to finish.  Looking back on this list, I see that 18 of this year’s books had death as a primary theme, including the stand-out, “The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying” by Nina Riggs. If you have the courage to read a book written by a woman who is dying from cancer, give it a go. It was one of the highlights of my list. 


Hannah Arendt’s classic, “The Origins of Totalitarianism”

Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale”

“Furiously Happy” by Jenny Lawson

Kate DiCamillo’s “The Illuminated Adventures of Flora & Ulysses”

Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”

Issa Rae’s “Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl”

Magda Szabó’s exquisite novel “The Door”


Blair Braverman’s “Welcome to the Goddam Ice Cube”

“Americanah” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


Isabel Wilkerson’s “The Warmth of Other Sons”

bell hooks’s “Bone Black”

“Snow Flower and the Secret Fan” by Lisa See

“The Vegetarian” by Han Kang

“The Story of My Teeth” by Valeria Luiselli

“The Conservationist” by Nadine Gordimer

“Down City” by Leah Carroll

“Howl’s Moving Castle” by Diana Wynne Jones

“Word by Word” by Kory Stamper

“The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas

“Working Stiff” by  Judy Melinik MD and TJ Mitchell

“The Lovely Bones,” by Alice Sebold


“West with the Night” by Beryl Markham

“West with the Night” by Beryl Markham (yes, twice in a row)

Joy Fielding’s “She’s Not There”

Jennifer Egan’s “A Visit from the Goon Squad”

Jhumpa Lahiri’s “The Namesake”

“Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout” by Laura Jane Grace


Patti Smith’s “Just Kids”

Anita Brookner’s “Rules of Engagement”

Madeleine Eagle’s “A Wrinkle in Time”

Chrissie Hynde’s “Reckless: My Life as a Pretender”

“The Left Hand of Darkness” by Ursula K. Le Guin

Sarah Hepola’s “Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget”


“The Problem with Forever” by Jennifer L. Armentrout

TIna Fey’s “Bossypants”

“The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir” by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich


Janet Benton’s “Lilli De Jong”

“We Have Always Lived in the Castle” by Shirley Jackson

“The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying” by Nina Riggs

“The Time Traveler’s Wife” by Audrey Niffnegger


“The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks,” by Rebecca Skloot

Joan Aiken’s “The Wolves of Willoughby Chase”

“Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution,” by Ji-li Jiang

“An Unsuitable Job for a Woman,” by P.D. James

“Cover Her Face,” by P.D. James


“The Skull Beneath the Skin” by P.D. James

“We Were Feminists Once” by Andi Zeisler

“News of the World” by Paulette Jiles

“Shrill” by Lindy West


“Uncle Tom’s Cabin” by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Hillary Rodham Clinton’s “What Happened”

Alice Herdan-Zuckmayer’s excellent memoir “The Farm in the Green Mountains”


“Daughter of Smoke and Bone” by Laini Taylor

“Never Caught: the Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of their Runaway Slave Ona Judge,” by Erica Armstrong Dunbar


“The Children of Men,” by P.D. James

“Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest” by Zeynep Tufekci

“You & a Bike & a Road” by Eleanor Davis

Myriam Gurba’s “Mean”

My goal for 2018 is to keep reading books by women. 

3 thoughts on “Every Book I finished in 2017, in order”

  1. I did this back in 2012 and published in on my old blog. I’ll have to dig up my list on my old computer as I think I’ve read more books than my Goodreads account says.

    You may like Alice McDermott and also Kate Atkinson.


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