Interesting topic. Hard to choose 5.
But, choose 5 I must. So here I go.
1.) Princess: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia by Jean Sasson
I had to read this book for either a psychology class or a women in literature class; I don't remember which. Maybe it was for a philosophy class. It was for college; I do remember that much at least. (It appears I had better start taking a multi-vitamin and some omega 3 pills, because lately I feel like my mind has been going.)
Anyway. This book was a very interesting look into a culture completely different than my own. Some have speculated that it is not completely nonfiction (the princess divulging secrets could face death if her identity was discovered), but nonetheless it is a compelling look into what life is like for some women.
2.) Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
A classic. Pure and simple. And I love that this version is annotated. I love me a good annotated book, dorky as that may be. My favorite copy of Alice in Wonderland is the annotated version I bought at the Huntington Library years ago.
The Portable Dorothy Parker
I have an older version of this, but I should buy the updated version- they've added some more of Parker's work and a mini biography, apparently. Why should women read this? Because Dorothy Parker was clever and funny and honest.
Another classic. I don't think this should just be a book every woman should read; I think it should be a book that every person should read. But I don't think today's kids should read it when they are in the 8th or 9th grade; I think a lot of them are too young to appreciate what a fantastic character Atticus Finch is.
Maybe this title belongs more to "books every young woman" should read, but I love these books. The protagonist, who may be a bit of a brat sometimes, is a strong, smart, clever girl. Quite a lot of my favorite young adult novels (I read a lot of them, being a 5th grade teacher) happen to be about young men, but this book centers on Lyra and her adventures. I love that it is a girl who is setting out to save the world.
So, there's 5 of my top choices. I could add to the list, maybe a little Virginia Woolf or Kate Chopin, but 5 is 5 and I am done.
What books do you think every woman should read at least once?