Meg Wolitzer: TOP TEN BOOKS

Meg Wolitzer courtesy of Nina Subin

The author Meg Wolitzer, who lives in New York City, sold her first story to a children’s magazine at age 11. She has several books on the New York Times bestseller list, among them The Wife, which was made into a movie starring Glenn Close. Her writing, which often centers on explorations  of feminism and equality, includes the 2012 essay “The Second Shelf,” published in the New York Times Book Review, which addresses why women’s fiction is often less highly regarded as men’s. Her latest novel is “The Female Persuasion,” which dives into the complexities of second-wave feminism that has become so pertinent in the era of Me Too. About her new book, she posed these questions to New York Magazine: “What about female power? What about people’s ambivalence towards it? What about the excitement around it? And also, how do people make meaning of the world?”

Below are Meg Wolitzer’s favorite books, available to purchase individually or as a set.



Sylvia Plath
These poems, most of which were written in the last months of Plath’s life, remain startling, muscular, a true achievement.
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Toni Morrison
A strong, short, devastating novel that explores a female friendship and examines trauma as it informs and alters people’s lives.
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Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx

Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
The title lays out the contents of this masterful, groundbreaking work of immersive journalism that took over a decade to write, and is always absorbing.
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The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

Muriel Spark
A droll, precise novel about a charismatic teacher and her group of favorite students. Witty, chilling, divine.
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The House of Mirth

Edith Wharton
A great social novel that feels shockingly contemporary as it confronts ideas of class. (Also, it must be said that Wharton’s novels are so deeply pleasurable.)
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Never Let Me Go

Kazuo Ishiguro
This first-person dystopian narrative is disarming, chatty (for a while), and ultimately crushingly sad in its inevitability.
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Mrs. Bridge

Evan S. Connell 
A perfect 1959 character study of a Kansas City housewife before WWII. Sad, funny, wry, and simply brilliant. I press this book on everyone I meet, because I love it so much.
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James Joyce
This collection, which includes the masterpiece “The Dead,” is sweeping as well as specific about all the lives within it. Favorites include the much-read “Araby," and also the perfect, subtle, devastating short-short, “Clay.”
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The Member of the Wedding

Carson McCullers
A lushly written coming-of age novel that also has much to say about race, death, loneliness.
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To The Lighthouse

Virginia Woolf
This novel is just astonishing in its depth and reach and beauty. There is really nothing else like it, and no matter how many times I read it I find myself shocked at what Woolf was able to do.
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