If this winter is anything like the winters we have had before, it is due to stay chilly for a while. This sounds like the perfect excuse to sink your teeth into a great novel so that you can spend the colder days tucked under a duvet with your warming drink of choice, guilt free. BN1 Magazine has teamed up with The Feminist Bookshop to provide you with some winter reads recommended by Salomée, Hollie and Ruth. From a wonderful witch tale, to anti-colonial epic; hilarious queer texts, and motivational politics, these girls have rounded up some proper bad-ass stories.
Recommended Stories by Salomée
Briefly, A Delicious Life by Nell Stevens
A delightful novel narrated by Blanca, a fourteen year old ghost in 1473 on the hills of Mallorca. The teenage queer ghost is funny, endearing, and seeing the world through her eyes is a unique experience as a reader. She spies on the village inhabitants and her interest focuses on a family of newcomers (no other than Frederic Chopin and George Sand). We follow her thoughts, her reflections on the events leading up to her accidental death, and how she falls in love with George Sand. Historical fiction and sapphic love. Witty and beautiful prose. Unforgettable.
Witches by Brenda Lozano
One of a kind book. Beautifully immersive. Historical, mysterious, and deeply witchy. The two narrators echo each other in alternating chapters and resemble the interview they have to piece together what happened to Paloma, a trans femme healer (‘Muxe’) based in Mexico. One is the victim’s cousin, the other, an investigative journalist. Translated from the Spanish, I loved the translator’s note at the end of the book to explain certain choices and on the importance of linguistics – this added another layer to the story and paid tribute to the power of language, female friendship and transmission.
Have-to-Reads by Hollie
Babel by R. F. Kuang
This is a book everyone; it’s dark academia, it’s historical fiction, it’s an anti-colonial epic, and it’s an inspiring call for change. Set in an alternate version of Oxford, 1836, Babel tells the story of colonialism through the power and manipulation of language and translation. An essential read.
Nevada by Imogen Binnie
A trans-led road trip novel like no other, Nevada follows Maria who feels as though she’s hit a brick wall in life. Exploring everything from gender, sex, identity and class, you’ll want to pick up this hilarious and original cult classic.
Ruth’s Reading Recommendations
The Queens of Sarmiento Park by Camila Sosa Villada
A stunning novel following the lives of the residents of ‘the queerest boarding house in the world’. Beautiful and devastating in equal measure, this had me reading right through the night to see how the story ends.
Fix the System, Not the Women by Laura Bates
Another brilliant, searing inditement of the patriarchy by Laura Bates. A great read as we start a new year for everyone who is resolved to find ways to change the system, not the people oppressed by it.