Title: How to Be a Woman
Author: Caitlin Moran
Publisher: Ebury Press
Released: June 16th 2011
Pages: 312 (Paperback)
Buy: Amazon UK / Amazon US
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It's a good time to be a woman: we have the vote and the Pill, and we haven't been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain...
Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should we use Botox? Do men secretly hate us? And why does everyone ask you when you're going to have a baby?
Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin answers the questions that every modern woman is asking.
So a lot of my fellow feminists have told me to read this - something "every woman should read" so I thought hey, why not? How to Be a Woman is pure genius. It's hysterically funny and cringe-worthy, but at the same time, Moran addresses some issues that every woman is thinking. This book is basically a woman's guide to life.
In the book, Moran explores a variety of concepts that are forced on women - childbirth, abortion, marriage, love, fashion, weight and puberty, just to name a few. Taking these ideas, she tells the reader funny tales from her life, whilst also making them think and admit to the world: I am a strident feminist!
Although a lot of the humour is for adults, teens will understand a lot of it too. Well, I did, anyway. I may not get childbirth, but I do understand the immense pressure society puts women under to look the classic idea of "perfect". Throughout the entire book, I went through phases of just sitting there and thinking, Damn, is this woman reading my mind? Moran is unafraid to ask those questions a lot of us are burning to know the answers to.
As a narrator, Moran was pretty amazing. As I said earlier, she is hysterical - you can't go a page without laughing, let me tell you. It's also easy for women to relate to her, as she easily admits these embarrassing experiences most of us shy away from. Admittedly, her style isn't everyone's cup of tea; some may call her quite outgoing and crass, but to me, she was great. She's the kind of role model a lot of young women can look up to: she is a real woman. Not a celebrity with fake boobs and fake tan, but a real woman with saggy breasts and stretch marks! It's just refreshing.
I think it goes without saying that this isn't the kind of book most men will like. If you're male and this intrigues you, then go ahead and pick it up. But let me warn you: there is talk of menstruation and breast-naming. After you read this book, you will think women are insane. Which we are, kind of.
However, if you're a woman reading this and you find it intriguing, going and pick it up as soon as possible! And if you're a woman reading this and don't find it intriguing, go and pick it up anyway - you may find yourself pleasantly surprised. Moran offers the world in-depth knowledge into the brain of a woman, creating a read that a wide variety of people will enjoy. Although it was slow at parts, I'm glad to have read it. Guys have The LAD Bible? We have this.