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The 25 Books Every Young Woman Should Read At Least Once In Their Life

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Here are the books I personally suggest every young woman should read… kidding, what do I know. I reached out to leading and successful women (and a few men) in a plethora of different industries to ask them the books they think every young woman should read at least once in their life. Here are their suggestions.

#1 Am I Going to Be Okay

The book is the author's journey through a life of dysfunctional relationships and how she weathers the storm of mental illness, addiction, and grief.

She is a mental health therapist who offers tips throughout her book on how to overcome anxiety and addiction.

Also, she discusses her experiences in college and love. It won the Dragonfly Award for first-time authors.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Mary Ortega

Company: debrawhittam.com

15 points
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  1. Great book, Once i picked this book up and I didn’t put it down till I was done reading it …Fantastic Book

  2. This book was such a quick read because I could put it down. Debra’s story is one hat many people can relate to and find strength from.

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#2 The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

The first book I read as a college student that featured Asian women as the main characters. The children in these stories had complicated relationships with their families, not like the syrupy sweetness of the Brady Brunch or that of Anglo families.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar

Company: mohadoha.com

7 points
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  1. Anglo families don’t all have syrup-y sweetness. Probably shouldn’t categorize everyone like that.😏

#3 Searching for God in the Garbage

My new and very candid memoir: Searching for God in the Garbage, is helpful to any young woman who struggles with dieting. You too will joyfully discover this simple and freeing tidbit from a Harvard grad: When overeating, it's not your body that is hungry - it's your soul!

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Bracha Goetz | Author: Explore Her Books Here

7 points
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#4 Who Moved My Cheese?

This book is short and impactful. 90 pages that can be read in about an hour. The book cover says it is an Amazing way to deal with change in your work and in your life and I couldn't agree more. The story is very simple and reads almost like a children's fable. Young girls can learn that what matters most in a world that is everchanging is their attitude and their ability to expect change, welcome change, and to never stop changing.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Courtney Carrera | Personal Website | Blog

7 points
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#5 For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf

This choreopoem, which was made into a film by Tyler Perry, is still relevant more than 40 years after publication. This book conveys the plight, struggles, triumphs, fears, internal and interpersonal struggles of black women across the diaspora.

Readers learn the impact of rape, abortion, loss, sexual exploitation, isolation and domestic violence on black women's mind, bodies and souls. Feminists cannot call themselves such without this book which reveals the need for intersectionality. Also, this book and its performances on Broadway were the original #TimesUp and #MeToo movements.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor:  Aisha K Staggers

6 points
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#6 Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys’ Club of Silicon Valley

Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys' Club of Silicon Valley by Emily Chang gives an unvarnished behind the scenes look at the uphill battle women face in Silicon Valley. Women need to know what they are up against. A trap known is a trap avoided.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Bobbie Carlton

Company: innovationwomen.com

5 points
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#7 Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

This book taught me how to communicate my ideas and presentations in a way that people remember.

When you're teaching people about your passion, it can be difficult to relate. You're invested in whatever it is you do, say journalism-they don't see why people still read the paper.

Chip and Dan Heath do a phenomenal job at explaining principles behind why some ideas are more memorable than others. If we can all learn to speak in ways that people understand, with concrete language, immersion in experience and memory hooks, then we can get our message across.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Steven Mack

Company: simplesolutionsfitness.com

5 points
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#8 Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace With Marriage

[This book] is about a skeptic that makes peace with marriage. It tracks the history of marriage in various cultures, shines a light on the stats of American marriage, and tells an unusual love story. Young women should read this book because marriage is too often fantasized. This book talks about marriage in a very real way through two unique people.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Vanessa Valiente

Company: vstyleblog.com | vstyleformen.com

5 points
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#9 Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead

Sheryl Sandberg addresses the full struggles of women trying to get to the top. Every woman needs to read this to help them be successful and support other women to be successful. It's a wonderful read that can open one's eyes to obvious as well as the unseen issues that women face in the workplace.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Vanessa Valiente

Company: vstyleblog.com | vstyleformen.com

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#10 Prince Harming Syndrome

Unfortunately, there are far too many sociopaths, narcissists and emotionally unavailable men out there who are breaking hearts and making women question their minds and lovability. 

Prince Harming Syndrome explains why women might have a psychological vulnerability for dating these heartbreakers - and offers a range of tools to vet better in dating - and heal and move on from Heartbreakers. 

Prince Harming Syndrome mixes the latest psychological research on relationships with the philosophy of Aristotle! 

The book was loved & recommended on Oprah's site. In fact, Prince Harming Syndrome was loved so much by the people at Oprah, I was asked to write a relationship column on Oprah.com! 

Note from the author: The book was loved & recommended on Oprah's site - and I'm now offering the book for FREE on my site because I want to help as many women as possible! Get the book here.

Contributor: Karen Salmansohn 

Company: NotSalmon.com | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

4 points
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#11 Just the Funny Parts

An inspiring book by a female comedian about how she made it in Hollywood. This book is insightful for anyone trying to breakthrough in a male-dominated industry.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Kristina Libby

Company: lomskincare.com | Twitter

4 points
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#12 The Glass Castle

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls is a must-read for young women. Its focus on change, human connection, and intrapersonal relationships is relevant for anyone, but especially young women. The story follows Jeanette, a strong-willed young woman who struggles to find a balance in responsibilities to her family and herself.

While the Walls family story is unique, Jeannette's experience as a young woman learning to prioritize herself, her career and goals, over those of others, is extremely relatable.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Nicole Quaste | Twitter | Instagram

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#13 Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. Not everyone is a fan of Jane Eyre as a novel, but I've always admired Jane's steadfastness in knowing who she is and what she stands for. She has a quiet strength about her that I feel is vital for a young woman to come to find in herself.

There's a lot of role models for young women who yell their anger and hurt, which is sometimes necessary, but I think there's also something to be said for the quiet fight and steadfastness Jane has in her that she never lets go of.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Jazmin Cybulski

Company: bellaellaboutique.com

4 points
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#14 Decolonial Daughter: Letters from a Black Woman to Her European

This book is essential reading not only to get the perspective of a black American woman - which is important for any young woman to understand how life experience can differ depending on the color of your skin. It's also the story of growing up as a black girl in NYC, dealing with an abusive father, and making a successful media career in NYC.

Then Brown took a huge risk and leap of faith by moving to another country, Denmark, for love. Brown's marriage in Denmark didn't work out, and she had a nervous breakdown in her thirties.

In this book, she reflects on her experiences, on love, on taking a risk, how to deal with racial and socio-economic barriers, and on how you gain self-knowledge through painful experience.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Jonathan Maunder

Company: repeaterbooks.com | Instagram

4 points
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#15 Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed

I think every single person should read this book. This book is a series of letters written to love and life advice columnist, Dear Sugar, and Ms. Sugar's responses. They are heartbreaking, funny, captivating, and utterly human. It reminds you of all the other people out there in the world. It reminds you to be good. And it surprises you. It addresses the many internal struggles within us all.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Vanessa Valiente

Company: vstyleblog.com | vstyleformen.com

4 points
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#16 The Art of Extreme Self-Care

Women are often taught that to be “good” means making other people’s needs much more important than their own. Unfortunately, that can leave women burned out and unable to truly serve anyone. Learning healthy self-care at an early age could save a young woman from a great deal of stress, overwhelm, and pain.

This book is a powerful guide to creating a balanced and fulfilling life. It also offers a ton of resources for doing so.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Kim McIntyre

Company: joyfulbeing.com 

4 points
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#17 Disrupters: Success Strategies From Women Who Break the Mold

On the other end of the spectrum (from Brotopia) is Disrupters: Success Strategies From Women Who Break the Mold by Dr. Patti Fletcher. While Fletcher is also open about our challenges and how the odds are frequently stacked against us, she offers ways to rise above the situation, concrete suggestions and a path to the top, as well as some inspiring examples of women who have made it.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Bobbie Carlton

Company: innovationwomen.com

3 points
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#18 Mating in Captivity

In Mating in Captivity, recent Harvard grad Helen Zuman enters a cult, in part because she's yet to learn self-trust. Her story shows how one young woman surrenders her power—and how she takes it back...

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Helen Zuman

Company: helenzuman.com

3 points
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#19 The Power

This book is a powerful look at how power degrades everyone. Insightful and inspiring for women particularly. I devoured it in a single day on vacation.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor:  Kristina Libby

Company: lomskincare.com | Twitter

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#20 Quench Your Own Thirst

This book by Sam Adam's founder Jim Koch helps all entrepreneurs find their journey - female or not. That being said, most women are not recommended business books which can hurt their ability to understand, find and progress in their own journey. Read more business books, ladies.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor:  Kristina Libby

Company: lomskincare.com | Twitter

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#21 The Pisces

I believe that every young woman should read The Pisces by Melissa Broder, which, put simply is about a woman who falls in love with a merman. Every young woman should read this book because of it's depressingly artful representation of obsession and love. Lucy, the main character, brings to life the angst and confusion that comes when your identity is wrapped up in who you love. Seeing the extremes of Lucy's existential predicaments, readers can find themselves: obsessively checking to see if Tinder Date #444 texted back; leaving homegirl on read, just because you can. Every one can find a little of themselves in Lucy, and maybe, just maybe, they'll also fall in love with a merman (who knows?).

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Ashley Collom

Company: magicalmind.co

2 points
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#22 Nonviolent Communication by Marshall B. Rosenberg

When people talk about excellent communications skills, they usually mean clear business writing or confident public speaking. What's often not taught is how to communicate with your husband so that you won't have the same fights over and over again, how to ease a tense or violent situation with your words, or how to teach your children to express their needs in a way that will lead to a good relationship. This book teaches that kind of communication.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Lisa

Company: thegiveandget.com

2 points
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#23 Beyond Barriers: How to Unlock Your Limitless Potential

This book is about how Nikki, an Indian immigrant, found success in America after choosing to embrace her culture rather than hiding it. She is now the CEO of BeyondCurious. She coaches other goal-setters to do the same. Super amazing.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Kathryn Gisi

Company: bookinabox.com

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#24 The Third Option

Shannon's book is all about telling young women that they don't have to choose between a career and having a family...that there is actually a third option for them. She lays it out in the book.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Kathryn Gisi

Company: bookinabox.com

2 points
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#25 Personal (R)evolution

Allison is a well-known life coach. This book is all about goal achieving. It's an interactive book that she encourages readers to write in. There are reflection point stops along the way. Her big thing is learning to set the right goals, rather than just making a list of unachievable goals and getting frustrated with yourself. Very cool woman.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

Contributor: Kathryn Gisi

Company: bookinabox.com

2 points
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