Bad Feminist: Essays


Bad Feminist: Essays

Author: Roxane Gay

Publisher: Harper Perennial, 2014 (Paperback, 318 pages)

Rating: 4owls

Memorable Quotes:

“When feminism falls short of our expectations, we decide the problem is with feminism rather than with the flawed people who act in the name of the movement.” p. x

“We would live in a world of silence if the only people who were allowed to write or speak from experience or about difference were those absolutely without privilege.” p.18

“Feminists are celebrating our victories and acknowledging our privilege when we have it. We’re simply refusing to settle. We’re refusing to forget how much work there is yet to be done. We’re refusing to relish the comforts we have at the expense of the women who are still seeking comfort.” p.102

“This is the truth of my trouble with trigger warnings: there is nothing words on the screen can do that has not already been done. A visceral reaction to a trigger is nothing compared to the actual experience that created the trigger.” p.152

“Somewhere along the line we started misinterpreting the First Amendment and this idea of the freedom of speech the amendment grants us. We are free to speak as we choose without fear of prosecution or persecution, but we are not free to speak as we choose without consequence.” p.180

“It’s hard not to feel humorless, as a women and a feminist, to recognize misogyny in so many forms, some great and some small, and know you’re not imagining things. It’s hard to be told to lighten up because if you lighten up any more, you’re going to float the fuck away. The problem is not that one of these things is happening; it’s that they are all happening, concurrently and constantly.” p.189

“Social networks are more than just infinite repositories for trivial, snap judgments; they are more than merely convenient outlets for mindless joy and outrage. They offer more than the common ground and the solace we may find during culturally significant moments. Social networks also provide us with something of a flawed but necessary conscience, a constant reminder that commitment, compassion, and advocacy neither can nor ever should be finite.” p.265

“No matter what issues I have with feminism, I am a feminist. I cannot and will not deny the importance and absolute necessity of feminism. Like most people, I’m full of contradictions, but I also don’t want to be treated like shit for being a woman.” p. 318


On Immunity: An Inoculation

On Immunity

On Immunity: An Inoculation

Author: Eula Biss

Publisher: Graywolf Press, 2014 (Hardcover, 163 pages)

Read: July 2015

Rating: 4owls

Memorable Quotes:

“ Herd immunity, an observable phenomenon, now seems implausible only if we think of our bodies as inherently disconnected from other bodies. Which, of course, we do.” p. 20

“Even a modestly informed woman squinting at the rough outlines of a compressed history of medicine can discern that quite a bit of what has passed for science in the past two hundred years, particularly where women are concerned, has not been the product of scientific inquiry so much as it has been the refuse of science repurposed to support already existing ideologies.” p. 70

“Wealthier countries have the luxury of entertaining fears the rest of the world cannot afford.” p. 92

“Capitalism has already impoverished the working people who generate wealth for others. And capitalism has already impoverished us culturally, robbing unmarketable art of its value. But when we begin to see the pressures of capitalism as innate laws of human motivation, when we begin to believe that everyone is owned, then we are truly impoverished.” p. 97




Author: Rainbow Rowell

Publisher: Dutton, 2011 (Hardcover, 323 pages)

Read: July 2015

Rating: 4owls

Memorable Quotes:

“Money is a cruel thing. It’s the thing that stands between you and the people you love.” p. 32

“There are moments when you can’t believe something wonderful is happening. And there are moments when your entire consciousness is filled with knowing absolutely that something wonderful is happening. Lincoln felt like he’d dunked his head into a sink full of Pop Rocks and turned on the water.” p. 311

“‘I didn’t know love could leave the lights on all the time. Do you know what I mean?’…‘I thought it took more naps,’ she said, struggling to find the right words. ‘Or blinked. I didn’t know it could just go on and on like this without falling off an edge. Like pi.’” p. 323

The Handmaid’s Tale


The Handmaid’s Tale

Author: Margaret Atwood

Publisher: Everyman’s Library, 2006 (Hardcover, 350 pages)

Read: July 2015

Memorable Quotes:

“We lived, as usual, by ignoring. Ignoring isn’t the same as ignorance, you have to work at it.” p. 67

“Sanity is a valuable possession; I hoard it the way people once hoarded money. I save it, so I will have enough, when the time comes.” p. 125

“What we prayed for was emptiness, so we would be worthy to be filled: with grace, with love, with self-denial, semen and babies.” p. 222

“The more difficult it was to love the particular man beside us, the more we believed in Love, abstract and total. We were waiting, always, for the incarnation. That word, made flesh.” p. 257

“As all historians know, the past is a great darkness, and filled with echoes. Voices may reach us from it; but what they say to us is imbued with the obscurity of the matrix out of which they come; and, try as we may, we cannot always decipher them precisely in the clearer light of our own day.” p.350

Everything I Never Told You


Everything I Never Told You

Author: Celeste Ng

Publisher: Penguin Press, 2014 (Hardcover, 297 pages)

Read: July 2015

Rating: 5owls

Memorable Quotes:

“The window was open. He had not been praying, but dreaming—which, she would realize later, came to almost the same thing.”

“Marilyn, packing those dreams away in lavender for their daughter, disappointment layered beneath her smile. Triply sequestered by house and dead-end street and tiny college town, her hands soft and uncalloused but idle. The intricate gears of her mind ticking silently at no one, thoughts pinging the closed windows like a trapped bee. And now, alone in their daughter’s room, surrounded by the relics of their daughter’s life, no lavender, only dust, in the air.”

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And other concerns)


Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And other concerns)

Author: Mindy Kaling

Publisher: Three Rivers Press, 2011 (Paperback, 219 pages)

Rating: 4owls

Memorable Quote:

“One friend with whom you have a lot in common is better than three with whom you struggle to find things to talk about.” p. 43

Half of a Yellow Sun


Half of a Yellow Sun

Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Publisher: Knopf/Anchor, 2006 (Hardcover, 433 pages)

Read: June 2015

Rating: 5owls

Memorable Quotes:

“Olanna…sat thinking about how a single act could reverberate over time and space and leave stains that could never be washed off. She thought about how ephemeral life was, about not choosing misery.” p. 245

“It was the very sense of being inconsequential that pushed her from extreme fear to extreme fury. She had to matter. She would no longer exist limply, waiting to die.” p. 280