How to be a Heroine (Or What I’ve Learned From Reading Too Much)- Samantha Ellis

Synopsis (by me)

In ‘How To Be a Heroine’ Ellis revisits her bookish heroines from the past and evaluates whether they really deserved to be heroines, and why they were her heroines to begin with.

Review

I mentioned in my review of Texts From Jane Eyre that this book has probably overtaken it in terms of book I am most likely to recommend. That’s probably true, although Texts from Jane Eyre may hold a wider appeal.

How to Be a Heroine is part memoir, part literary analysis, part feminist, part religious discussion. I didn’t expect all that. I expected a book simply about books.

It was interesting to see what Ellis got from her re-reads, and what her younger self had got from her initial reads. Sometimes she couldn’t see any heroism in the characters she had once wanted to emulate, sometimes she saw that the real heroines in the books were not the ones you would expect. Of course it all came together. Even if she couldn’t see someone as a heroine now they had helped shape her.

Ellis’ storytelling was what really drew me in. I really got a sense of what life was like for her, maybe because I saw some similarities with myself (whilst also having tons of differences).  I often wanted to read the books she had described when she wrote about reading them for the first time. Sometimes her more recent images made me change my mind, which was a shame in a way, but then maybe that means I’m not in the right stage of life or frame of mind to appreciate the books as she did first time. At other times her changes of mind made me want to read things more, or just the same, but maybe for different reasons.

I thoroughly recommend it, especially for female book readers (although there is no reason a man couldn’t enjoy it).

5/5

Buy it from amazon:

Hardback (£13.59)

Paperback (£9.99)

Kindle (£6.99)

Buy from an indie store (via Hive):

e-book (£7.99)

Other Reviews:

Lit Nerd

Did I miss your review? Leave me a link in comments and I will add it here

 

 

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under Biography, Feminism, Memoir, non-fiction review, Politics, Reading/reviews

7 responses to “How to be a Heroine (Or What I’ve Learned From Reading Too Much)- Samantha Ellis

  1. I thought the same when I first picked it up – that it is a book about books – and I was really pleasantly surprised to find out it goes deeper than that. I loved this one and I’m glad you did too! Thanks so much for linking my review 🙂

  2. Pingback: Sunday Surfing 4/1/15 | Lucybird's Book Blog

  3. Pingback: Review of the Year 2014- Non-Fiction | Lucybird's Book Blog

  4. Pingback: Top 10 Books of the Last 3 Years | Lucybird's Book Blog

  5. Pingback: Top 10 Books for Feminist Readers | Lucybird's Book Blog

  6. Pingback: Top 10 Tuesday: Non-Fiction | Lucybird's Book Blog

  7. Pingback: Top 10 Tuesday: Books Read in the Lifetime of this Blog | Lucybird's Book Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s