Mysteries of India

Cold, twenty-first century Chicago February got you down? Pick up one of these mystery novels and fall headfirst into the exotic locales offered by these atmospheric novels set in India that wear their exhaustive research lightly.   Perveen Mistry is many things: a devout Parsi, a divorcee, and India's first female lawyer. While she is…
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Novel Women of the ‘Teens

Independent women really started to come into their own in the early 20th century. It wasn't easy, but women felt invigorated by the nearing of the millenium, when everything seemed possible. I've collected some novels about unconventional women of the time period with great sensual and period detail. Albanian Eleanora and her father are a…
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The Novel Lives of Women Rulers

Historical novels are filled with kings, queens, and uprisings, and it's a vibrant genre. I'm focusing this post on female heads of state you may not be familiar with, at least not as they've usually been depicted. If you want suggestions about smart and capable women turning the patriarchy on its ear, read on. Andrea…
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A Novel Idea: Women Coming of Age in the Patriarchy

Women often don't fare well in patriarchal societies, yet somehow these societies continue. However, there is female rebellion, especially in the young realizing that they are about to become adults and responsible for propagating the culture. If you liked Gather the Daughters (see my review  here), then here are more books, but set in the recent…
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Weird Sisters and Others

Witchy women and feminine magic are favorite tropes in literature. They don't always get a fair shake, but in these books that could be filed under magical realism, they tend to come out on top in a (mostly male) world intent of keeping them down. Pull out your favorite throw blanket and curl up on…
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