I am woman. Hear me roar.
Have you ever imagined a different life?
Have you ever stood at a crossroads, undecided?
Have you ever had a moment when you wanted to roar?
The women in these startlingly original stories are all of us: the women who befriend us, the women who encourage us, the women who make us brave. From The Woman Who Slowly Disappeared to The Woman Who Was Kept on the Shelf and The Woman Who Returned and Exchanged her Husband, discover thirty touching, often hilarious, stories and meet thirty very different women. Each discovers her strength; each realizes she holds the power to make a change.
Witty, tender, surprising, these keenly observed tales speak to us all, and capture the moment when we all want to roar.
Published in ebook and Hardback formats by HarperCollins on 1st November 2018
Available to buy here at Hive or at other bookshops.
The book opens with the famous epigraph:
I am woman, hear me roar, in numbers too big to ignore
-Helen Reddy and Ray Burton
Meaningful lyrics that epitomise the aim of this book as part of the movement to raise up voices of all women and their varying and important stories.
Each chapter is a short story (of varying length) that often takes a whimsical or even absurd twist, very cleverly done, to convey allegories of common phrases and realities of women throughout their lives (such as being “eaten up” by Mum guilt, gender policing, access to birth control, or “wanting the ground to swallow you up” after humiliation).
These stories are modern day parables for women. All women. Older women, trans women, Mums, married women, refugee women, grieving women, daughters, successful women, women who make unpopular decisions, etc.
I think the interesting thing about these stories are that they will resonate differently with you depending on your life experiences and what stage in life you are, but there will, I guarantee, be at least one story that hits you hard.
There were several favourite chapters of mine: The Woman Who Wore Pink, The Woman Who Spoke Woman, The Woman Who Found The World In Her Oyster, The Woman Who Was Pigeonholed, and The Woman Who Ate Photographs. This final one I recommend to any parents watching their kids grow and feeling that tug between holding them tightly and letting them go (welled up just writing that let alone reading the chapter!). The writing and the way significant, current issues are interwoven through the stories, presented from a woman’s perspective, was both emotive and powerful. As with most feminist literature, this isn’t packed full of ways that men are horrid (quite the opposite in many of the stories), it simply presents the reality of situations from alternative perspectives and with wit, satire and intuition.
This is definitely a book both women and men need to read. I truly adored it.
Also, a TV series focusing on the stories within this book is in production so it’s my top tip to be the next “Big Little Lies” particularly as Nicole Kidman is one of the producers.
Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for this free ARC to review in my own words.