Lately I’ve been reading memoirs

So I’ve decided to stop being anxious about money and bought some of the books that have been on my amazon wishlist for a while. All I want to read right now are memoirs by awesome women. Here are a few of the best:

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How a bad girl fell in love by Girl on the Net

I have been reading Girl on the Net‘s blogs for years, mainly for the erotica, but fully on board with the feminism too. I knew this was going to be different to her blog and to her first book, since writing about love tends to be different to writing about sex. What I didn’t expect was how much, despite having a very different relationship history, I was able to relate. This book is as much about living with high functioning anxiety as it is about relationships. Girl on the Net writes about both with intelligence and self-awareness. I gave me the opportunity to reflect on my own approach to relationships, as well as being a very entertaining read.

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Becoming: Sex, Second Chances, and Figuring Out Who the Hell I am by Laura Jane Williams

I love how Laura Jane Williams writes. I devoured this book in just a few sittings. Laura writes about heartbreak and about growing up in a way that is entertaining, thought provoking and at times very moving. The book made me think a lot about my own becoming, and the person I want to be. Laura’s honesty and openness was probably an influential factor in my decision to share some of my awkward and traumatic sexual history. She’s an inspiring lady and I would definitely recommend this book.

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The Latte Years by Philippa Moore

I was skeptical about this, since it’s at least partially advertised as a memoir about weight loss. I can see why this is – Philippa become known on the internet for writing about her health, fitness and losing weight. But this book is about so much more than that. It’s about what it is like to try hard for something that you want and to stop being a victim. It’s about working to change your life and what happens to your relationships when you do.

I had a lot of empathy with the Philippa at the start of this story, a natural people pleaser who put her own dreams aside for the security of a small life. As such, I found her journey hugely inspiring. Over the course of the book she leaves behind her first marriage, unsatisfactory jobs, an unhealthy lifestyle and the country in which she lives, and learns a ton about herself on the way. I would recommend this book to anyone seeking to make any changes in their life.

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Shoot The Damn Dog: a Memoir of Depression by Sally Brampton

This book is much bleaker than the ones above. In it, Sally describes the pain of living with severe medication-resistant depression for years of her life. It is very eye-opening, and has left me with more compassion for depressives who commit suicide. Nobody could read this book and not understand how some people simply cannot bear to be alive anymore. She talks about the roots of her depression, the impact it had on her life, and the various treatments she went through.

Despite it’s subject matter, Sally writes so beautifully I found that I looked forward to reading more at the end of the day. The book has allowed me to reflect on the roots and manifestation of my own (admittedly much milder) depression, and to find out a lot more about the condition. All in all, not a fun read, but an important one.

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