1913 - Suffragette throws herself under the King's horse. 1969 - Feminists storm Miss World. Now - Caitlin Moran rewrites The Female Eunuch from a bar stool and demands to know why pants are getting smaller. There's never been a better time to be a woman: We have the vote and the Pill, and we haven't been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain....
Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should you get Botox? Do men secretly hate us? What should you call your vagina? Why does your bra hurt? And why does everyone ask you when you're going to have a baby? Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin Moran answers these questions and more in "How To Be A Woman" - following her from her terrible 13th birthday ("I am 13 stone, have no friends, and boys throw gravel at me when they see me") through adolescence, the workplace, strip clubs, love, fat, abortion, TopShop, motherhood and beyond.
Caitlin Moran had literally no friends in 1990, and so had plenty of time to write her first novel, The Chronicles of Narmo, at the age of fifteen. At sixteen she joined music weekly Melody Maker and at eighteen briefly presented the pop show Naked City on Channel 4. Following this precocious start she then put in eighteen solid years as a columnist on the Times - both as a TV critic and also in the most-read part of the paper, the satirical celebrity column "Celebrity Watch".
The eldest of eight children, home-educated in a council house in Wolverhampton, Caitlin read lots of books about feminism - mainly in an attempt to be able to prove to her brother, Eddie, that she was scientifically better than him. Caitlin isn't really her name. She was christened "Catherine". But she saw 'Caitlin' in a Jilly Cooper novel when she was 13 and thought it looked exciting. That's why she pronounces it incorrectly: "Catlin". It causes trouble for everyone.
©2011 Caitlin Moran (P)2012 Random House Audiobooks
"Spectacular! Very, very funny, moving, and revealing" (Jonathan Ross)
"Moran's writing sparkles with wit and warmth. Like the confidences of your smartest friend." (Simon Pegg)
"I devoured How to Be A Woman in one sitting.... This is the book that frustrated boyfriends have wanted someone...to write for decades" (Dan Stevens, The Times)
A wonderful book. Moran really has nailed the funny, frustrating and infuriating absurdities and injustices of everyday life for the modern woman. For me this book expresses really well a lot of the things women need to be fighting against and fighting for. And every issue is explored with great thoroughness, every argument rigorously evidenced. But it's not an academic text or political manifesto - it's a very entertaining, funny and often heartwarming autobiography, sometimes uncomfortable (the chapter on childbirth is not for the faint-hearted) but rightly so. And the author's reading is vibrant, emphatic and life-affirming. I found fifteen minutes with Caitlin a great tonic! Can't recommend this highly enough.
This had me laughing out loud so much on the tube. I got some very quizzical looks from fellow commuters. It almost made me cry in places too. Strident, opinionated, witty and strong. An awesome book. Do listen.
Well narrated by the author. I loved this book and looked forward to my commute so I could carry on where I left off. It was laugh out loud funny in places and always interesting. It explained feminism to me in a way which made me realise that, yes actually, I am a feminist and I'd be proud of saying it. I only wish her first book was on Audible.
I was dubious initially about this one as I thought it might be faux feminisim but downloaded it when I needed something light and funny to listen to. I was really pleasantly surprised as its both genuinely amusing and moving at times but also contains some fresh perspectives. And Caitlin's Wolverhampton accent really added to the experience - nothing beats a book read by the author.
I didn't agree with everything Catlin writes but it has left me considering things from a feminist point of view and to basically stand up for my opinions and question other's opinions. It's definitely worth a read.
I can't decide if I enjoyed this, at times it was interesting and thought provoking, then I realised, I was being told my life isn't good enough if I don't think or live like Catlin Moran. She seems to have a way of putting everyone down that doesn't think like her, without you even realising. Not a feel good book.
I was always a bit suspicious of Caitlin Moran - her reputation as a clever, cool writer seemed to precede her. Then I heard her being interviewed on Radio 4 and her warmth and wit struck me. There is no pomposity, no intellectual superiority, even though she is quite probably intellectually superior to your average Joe. She is quite simply a funny woman with a quirky story, and tells it with style.
Laugh out loud funny, brutally honest and thought provoking in equal measure. Not just a guide on 'how to be a woman' but a guide for men to on how better to understand partners and daughters.
Expecting to laugh out loud, only the urge to get to the end got me through this. It does have some good reviews but just not to my taste in humour.
This book should probably come with a an explicit language warning, but once you get past that, Ms Moran writes with clarity, honesty and humour. Her reading feels like having a clever, funny friend sitting on your sofa.
This is the sort of writing that gives feminism a good name.
I shall be giving a copy to my teenage daughter.
"Cuts to the bone"
Every woman should know that there are other women who feel the same way.
The love that Caitlin feels for her siblings and her honesty in telling the story, a lot of people would shy away from the abortion.
It is like sitting on the sofa having a chat with your mate.
"Must read, especially for men (yes I am a man...)"
From a literature standpoint there may be things to criticize, basically that is 'too much' here and there. But the tone is light, Caitlin is frank and at the end of the day very sharp and refreshingly original on a very very important subject of which we should all be more conscious of.
"A great listen"
Caitlin Moran's take on the definition of being a woman, With wit and humour she covers l the whole range of being a woman, from anatomy to relationships, work, children, even a bit on fashion. All men should read it, it'll be an eye opener, even for honorary women!
She's great at reading her own book, brings some depth to the written word,
How to be a woman, of course
"This book is a friend you always wanted to have!"
I love this book- and to listen to it was an extraordinary experience!
it was like having a chat with your best feminist friend while she explained to you all you ever wanted to hear-about your womanhood- all the necessary detail every woman will go through in her life eventualy but nobody ever talks about it,or eplains or educate!
it is marvelous!
I wish I could give no stars. Terrible book, at the best times she contradicts herself in each chapter, at worse times she contradicts herself in the same sentence.
"Generally funny, but I expected something more"
In my opinion this book is a reasonably funny autobiography which talks about today's view of what it means to be a woman. Nicely read.
"Best way to get into feminism"
Feminism in a hilarious jacket. She talks about her way of finding out how to be a woman and threads recognizable situations in there!
"How Caitlin Moran Wants to be a Woman"
Really enjoyed listening to Caitlin read her book, and I loved and appreciated much of what she has to say about Being Woman. As a strident feminist, I marked her down a touch for the things I disagree with her on (just a couple!) but up for making me laugh so much. Down a wee bit for swearing so much I can't share it with my pre teen kids yet. Then again, I didn't want to have the abortion discussion with them just yet anyway. Good book; recommended to all over 16/18 yrs old, but I'm sure it will appeal most to over 30s.
"Ludicrousness, hilarity, and food for thought."
Self-narrated, Caitlin Moran addresses the struggles of the modern day woman through anecdotes of her own hilarious experiences. Instead of succumbing to patriarchal shaming of how a woman in contemporary society "should be", she calls out misogynistic tendencies as 'fucking bullshit' AND backs her arguments with solid reasoning. Though there are areas Moran could have explored further by substituting speculation, her presentation of feminist activism is flamboyant, fierce, but fun. If you can stomach a few gnarly details and embrace a northern-girl's choice of language, this book is bound to give you several PAAAHAH!!! moments.
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