11 Non-Fiction Books About Famous Women That You Should Read

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Cover of Notorious RBG, by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik. Image via the Notorious RBG Tumblr and publisher Dey Street Books

Move over, Katniss and Wonder Woman! These 11 books about famous women deserve a spot on your bookshelf…or at least on your to-read list.

Let’s face it: fiction doesn’t always cut it, even if your reading list tends to favor strong heroines. Sometimes, the truth really can be stranger than fiction, especially when it comes to famous women around the world. Besides, a good non-fiction book not only teaches you about its subject, it makes you want to read more of the book and hopefully more about that person!

However, jumping into the genre of non-fiction from the comfortable world of fiction doesn’t always go very well. We’ve been there, too.

That’s why we’ve put together this starting list. Books featured here cover history stretching all the way back to ancient Egypt and coming all the way here to today with a Nobel Prize winner and a rather notorious judge. Each book features one — or more — real women.

Some books are autobiographies. Others instead put together several shorter entries about plenty of different women, gathered around a theme. Many of these entries have plenty of pages to consume, but some shrink it down to about the length of a normal novel.

We’ll also include more books about famous women as additional recommended reading on each slide.

Together, they represent a very short introduction to women in history around the world, and how to find them in the world of non-fiction, all presented in no particular order. All that said, let’s get started.