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My 3 Favourite Female Writers

There were times when male authors were considered as literary writers from the start while women had to earn the adulation. 

But with time and proving their mettle in the literary world, readers are now seeking more and more of female authors who have come out with some award winning, sold out and must read books, taking the readers by storm with their writing. 

If I sit to write about all such authors, I will run out of writing space and you out of interest. When you get a taste of an authors writing, and it settles well within you, you wish to go back again and again. So I am going to share some of my favorite female writers whose books left a mark of my thoughts and made me ponder on certain things, time and situations.

Elif Shafak

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She is a Turkish British writer and writes in both Turkish and English with her work being translated in nearly 53 languages. The success of all her books hinges on her skill with which she deploys her narrations. Her writing is crystal clear and her understanding of human nature and behaviour helps strike the cord with her readers. Her books will give you a deep insight of the Turkish lifestyle and culture. Some of her work that I have read and loved are;

Bastard of Istanbul deals with a family’s connection with the event of 1915 Armenian genocide and at 19yrs of age, a girl comes to Istanbul in search of her Armenian roots. 

Forty rules of Love has over 9 lakh copies sold and it talks about love in the times of Rumi and Shams of Tabriz. When I got the book, I was a bit dicy about how it would be, but when I started reading, the book was an absolute page turner. BBC has listed the book as the 100 Books that shape our world. 

Honor is a book based on Honor killing; love-betrayals and clash in tradition and modernity while living in a foreign land- London. Everyone is seeking love but when its your own mother, things can get a little rocky as ego, arrogance and pride come in between.

Three daughters of Eve is about friendship, unrequited love and loyalty as the story swings between Istanbul and Oxford. Three friends, the theist, the agnostic and the atheist and the direction that they choose in their lives will leave you loving them all.

10 minutes 38 seconds in this strange world is a book about a girl who is murdered and stuck in after life for 10 minutes and 38 seconds and she goes back and recaps her entire life, from childhood till the last minute before her murder. And as she walks through her life, she talks about her 5 outcast friends who are now in a desperate search of her. 

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Image sourced through Google

She is an American Indian living in Houston. Her work is highly acclaimed, and she writes more on female protagonist be it in mythology or a fiction story. Her work is translated in more than 29 languages including Japanese, Dutch, Hebrew and Russian and some of her books have also been made into movies. Remember “Mistress of Spice” starring Aishwarya Rai. Here are her books that I have read;

Before we visit the goddess talks about mother and daughter relations as it traverses over generation, its complexities as the story moves from the streets of old Bengal to the modern day Houston. 

The Palace of Illusion with this book Divakaruni spins the story of Draupadi as she the protagonist of Mahabharata. This book is half mythical half fiction as its talks about the feminist side of the saga.  

The Forest of Enchantments Divakaruni has once again penned a compelling story of Ramayana from Sita’s point of view. Her happiness, sorrow, anguish and victory. It’s a simple and beautiful narration of the epic saga once written by Valmiki. 

Ayse Kulin

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Ayse Kulin also comes from a land where freedom of speech is still not a real concept. However she has voiced her views, opinions and facts in many of her books. She has dared to make a few critical statements about the leaders of Turkey, a country where she hails from. Her work has been translated in nearly 23 languages but she opines that a book looses its essence when translated into another language. Receiver of many literacy awards, her books will make you walk with all the characters as if they are next to you as you read. 

Without a Country” is a Historical Fiction as the book travels four generations. To escape the tyranny of Hitler in Germany, a Jewish couple flees to Turkey and as the time goes by and the family grows, they struggle to find their roots. Are they Turkish? – They have 4 generations staying here, or are they Jews from Germany? – Because that’s where they descent from. From World War 2 to the age of social media, the story talks about inter-religion marriage, love, tragedy and salvation. This book will make you think about people who are till date without a country. 

Last Train to Istanbul” tells the tale of a girl who comes from the last Ottoman pasha and choses to marry a Jew and to escape the family drama, they take their love and life to Paris. But Nazis come in search of all the Jews in France. The protagonist, with the help of Turkish Diplomats hatches a plan to save the Turks and some innocent Jews to get them back safely to Istanbul. A beautifully penned book which will get you nail biting at times and spurting with happiness the other. 

So these are some of the many books that I have devoured. Their writing at times speaks about the hardness of the world as life takes a sting from any barb and at other times, cherishes life. Authors have the ability to draw you into the life of some one else, who is totally different than you in terms of culture, nationality or religion but you still enjoy being with that person. At times when I turn the last page, the world seems to have changed, too bright or too dull, as it jolts me back to the reality of time and place where I am.

With this post, I am taking my blog to the next level with Blogchatter’s #MyFriendAlexa and you will find all my posts under the hashtag #mummatalkswrites and #mummatalksreads on all social media platforms.

By mummatalks

Mom of two brats, use to work as an analyst now a SAHM. Love books.

53 replies on “My 3 Favourite Female Writers”

You seem to have a good collection Hansa! Post pandemic, I would like to borrow some of your books and I know you would refuse! 😄 I’m surely gonna give your recommendations a read and share them with my friends.

Reading is a passion u follow greatly and writing about these authors with such enthusiasm is absolutely SUPERB…. keep on reading keep on implying…

I have definitely heard of some of the books, but have not read them nor read much about these authors.
perhaps because these are not quite the kind i read, but perhaps, next year would be a good time to explore different genres 🙂

honestly, sometimes i fear i am falling out of love of reading 🙁 is there a remedy?

Wow some amazing names and their incredible work. So much to read so less time. 😀
Well I would like to add another name whose writing I really admire – ‘Elizabeth Gilbert’.
Amazing list. Keep the great work going.
#MyFriendAlexa #ContemplationOfaJoker #Jokerophilia

I have only heard of Elif Shafak thought haven’t read any of her books yet. But I read good reviews about the forty rules of love from a fellow blogger.
Let’s hope I get to read books by the other authors.

This is one powerful list. I remember the movie ‘Mistress of Spices’ and had liked it.
Last Train to Istanbul has long been on my reading list. Speeding up my reading pace after such amazing recommendations!

This is a good list, Hansa. We called Chitra on Bloghatter Writing Festival last year and it was such a pleasure to have her on Twitter the whole day and learn so much from her on writing.

I’ve heard a lot about Elif Shafak but haven’t fread her books yet. Chitra D.B is one of my favourites. This is a wonderful list of authors and their books. Would love to read Without A Country.

I am a huge fan of Chitra D B. I have read most of her books. I even remember her first book that I read was Sister of my heart in the year 2003/2004. I read the book in 5 hours. Since that day I have loved her work. Also have read Forty rules of love but no other book of Elif Shafak. I will read other recommendations

I absolutely love the choices you made. These are strong female authors and the books they have written are absolutely brilliant

Some great suggestions… Read just a few, the most popular ones like Bastard of Istanbul and Last Train to Istanbul… Need the grab the others at the earliest… I’m still stuck at Taslima Nasreen, Anita Nair and Jhumpa Lahiri 😊

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is my absolute favourite and I’ve liked two books by Ayse Kulin too. Haven’t read Elif Shafak yet. Thank you for mentioning Ayse Kulin, I don’t think many Indian readers are aware of her writing.

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is my absolute favourite and I’ve liked two books by Ayse Kulin too. Haven’t read Elif Shafak yet. Thank you for mentioning Ayse Kulin, I don’t think many Indian readers are aware of her writing.

Nice compilation of your favourite female writers. Books nourish the mind and soul and the writers are an instrument to creating a peaceful space for us.
I visited your blog for the first time, thanks to MFA. Must say that I found your content very interesting! Keep writing 🙂

Elif’s work have been on my wish list for a long time now but I feel I will have to book mark your blog post and buy all of these writers work and read them. Thanks for sharing ❤️

Must book mark this. I’ve not heard about them. But will look up their work soon! Thanks for the list.

I have not read the books of any of the three authors you have mentioned but all of them seem to write very entertaining and good books. My favorite lady author is Ayn Rand and I simply loved The Fountainhead and Atlas shrugged written by her. I found her style of bringing out philosophical points of view through fiction really enchanting. I want to read a book by Chitra Bannerjee Divakurni as I have heard she is a brilliant writer. We follow each other on Twitter too.

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