Customer Reviews for

How to Be a Woman

Average Rating 4
( 67 )
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5 Star

(27)

4 Star

(18)

3 Star

(8)

2 Star

(7)

1 Star

(7)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

32 out of 33 people found this review helpful.

Terrific--But Not For Everyone

This is a terrific, provocative and thought provoking book on feminisim and all things, "woman," in general; however, it is not for everyone's tastes.

***If you are easily offended by four letter words on a broad, or body-specific basis--you'll probably want to stay ...
This is a terrific, provocative and thought provoking book on feminisim and all things, "woman," in general; however, it is not for everyone's tastes.

***If you are easily offended by four letter words on a broad, or body-specific basis--you'll probably want to stay away. Moran is an intelligent, articulate writer, but she gleefully embraces her vulgarities, even defending her use of one particularly offensive word. While the language can be blunt, it simply comes across as being HER, her personality and her view of womanhood; for me, it did not come across as a blatant attempt to be shocking--it's just who she is, her experience. I found it alternately appropriate, funny and question-raising; I had no problem with it--but some readers might.

***As Moran is English, based in London and the book was originally published there--there are many references to British personalities, pop culture and every day life that some readers will not be familiar with. If it's bothersome, be prepared to do some Googling.

***A feminist-treatise, this is also a memoir; Moran is "no holds barred" on her personal revelations. At times, this reads as "TMI" with raw, humiliating, cringe-worthy recounts of her coming of age: as one of 8 kids she relates, with brutal honesty, the traumas of being welfare-poor to the point her hand-me-downs included her mother's old underpants and the stifling lack of privacy.

***Her sister, Caz, emerges as a prize scene-stealing supporting character--some of the best lines are from her

***Moran is a wickedly funny, highly intelligent writer and thinker; don't assume because this book is funny, it's not serious. It tackles everything from body image/hair/functions, to sex, marriage, kids and abortion. It is a perfect read for discussion with your closest friends as Moran talks about these subjects in intimate ways that many of us wish we could emmulate.

I find her views refreshing and bold--and comforting: it reminds us that being a woman--struggling to come into our womanhood--is traumatic, often gross, humilating and heartbreaking. Yet Moran reminds us we are not alone in our "female" struggles and ultimately, to find joy, in who and what we are.

Not for everyone's taste, but for those who jump in--I think you will enjoy the ride--this is a worthwhile read that absolutely needs to be discussed, laughed over, and debated.

posted by irishclaireKG on July 21, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

I bought this book because it was described as the British versi

I bought this book because it was described as the British version of Jenny Lawson's book, which I loved. After reading 80 pages of How To Be A Woman, I am not planning on finishing it. Its humor is sub par compared to Let's Pretend This Never Happened. I hope my mother...
I bought this book because it was described as the British version of Jenny Lawson's book, which I loved. After reading 80 pages of How To Be A Woman, I am not planning on finishing it. Its humor is sub par compared to Let's Pretend This Never Happened. I hope my mother doesn't pick this book up off our bookshelf and be horrified to read that 13 year olds are masturbating, and getting bikini waxes and fingered. It wasn't true for me 7 years ago when I was that age, and I really don't think that much has changed since then. It's just a really weird book so far, but I suppose that is Britain for ya?
Anyway, if you're interested in the subject of feminism, this book should suit your fancy; otherwise, don't pick it up expecting a similar book to Jenny Lawson's!

posted by 804569 on July 29, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2012

    Terrific--But Not For Everyone

    This is a terrific, provocative and thought provoking book on feminisim and all things, "woman," in general; however, it is not for everyone's tastes.

    ***If you are easily offended by four letter words on a broad, or body-specific basis--you'll probably want to stay away. Moran is an intelligent, articulate writer, but she gleefully embraces her vulgarities, even defending her use of one particularly offensive word. While the language can be blunt, it simply comes across as being HER, her personality and her view of womanhood; for me, it did not come across as a blatant attempt to be shocking--it's just who she is, her experience. I found it alternately appropriate, funny and question-raising; I had no problem with it--but some readers might.

    ***As Moran is English, based in London and the book was originally published there--there are many references to British personalities, pop culture and every day life that some readers will not be familiar with. If it's bothersome, be prepared to do some Googling.

    ***A feminist-treatise, this is also a memoir; Moran is "no holds barred" on her personal revelations. At times, this reads as "TMI" with raw, humiliating, cringe-worthy recounts of her coming of age: as one of 8 kids she relates, with brutal honesty, the traumas of being welfare-poor to the point her hand-me-downs included her mother's old underpants and the stifling lack of privacy.

    ***Her sister, Caz, emerges as a prize scene-stealing supporting character--some of the best lines are from her

    ***Moran is a wickedly funny, highly intelligent writer and thinker; don't assume because this book is funny, it's not serious. It tackles everything from body image/hair/functions, to sex, marriage, kids and abortion. It is a perfect read for discussion with your closest friends as Moran talks about these subjects in intimate ways that many of us wish we could emmulate.

    I find her views refreshing and bold--and comforting: it reminds us that being a woman--struggling to come into our womanhood--is traumatic, often gross, humilating and heartbreaking. Yet Moran reminds us we are not alone in our "female" struggles and ultimately, to find joy, in who and what we are.

    Not for everyone's taste, but for those who jump in--I think you will enjoy the ride--this is a worthwhile read that absolutely needs to be discussed, laughed over, and debated.

    32 out of 33 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 20, 2012

    Absolutely hilarious (and thought provoking)!

    Caitlin Moran's How To Be a Woman is wildly funny and at the same time a great introduction to a modern idea of what it means to be a feminist. To quote the author, "a. Do you have a vagina? and b. Do you want to be in charge of it? If you said "yes" to both, then congratulations! You're a feminist." Moran tackles everything from menstruation to masturbation, hair removal, underwear size, and abortion in a very honest and hilarious fashion. As a side note, I learned about this book when Caitlin and Jenny Lawson aka The Blogess (who is also ridiculously funny and the author of Let's Pretend This Never Happened) interviewed each other.

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    good feminist rant with humor

    This book is an unapologetic feminist rant, wrapped in an entertaining autobiography. It treats some very important issues with thought-provoking comments, but also is peppered with a good deal of humor. There are some really important take-away messages that nicely summarize the situation for women and our place in society. I really liked how she suggested that asking simple questions could help assess important problems like harassment and oppression/inequality: "is that polite?" and "are the men doing this?"

    There is a lot of strong language that may be off-putting to some readers, and as the author is from the U.K. there is some usage that may be unfamiliar to US readers. In addition, there is quite a bit of slang that may be unfamiliar to readers who are not as steeped in popular culture, but it does not interfere with the reading of the book (and can be entertaining to look up). This is the sort of book that our daughters should read and consider, but it might be better (depending on the daughter's age) if we didn't know they were reading it!

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2012

    Not funny

    I was very excited to read this. Once I started I was disappointed almost immediately. I gave it a chance and kept plugging away at it hoping it would get funny. It never did. Had to stop reading it. It is very rare for me to not finish a book. Yes, it was that bad.

    4 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2012

    I bought this book because it was described as the British versi

    I bought this book because it was described as the British version of Jenny Lawson's book, which I loved. After reading 80 pages of How To Be A Woman, I am not planning on finishing it. Its humor is sub par compared to Let's Pretend This Never Happened. I hope my mother doesn't pick this book up off our bookshelf and be horrified to read that 13 year olds are masturbating, and getting bikini waxes and fingered. It wasn't true for me 7 years ago when I was that age, and I really don't think that much has changed since then. It's just a really weird book so far, but I suppose that is Britain for ya?
    Anyway, if you're interested in the subject of feminism, this book should suit your fancy; otherwise, don't pick it up expecting a similar book to Jenny Lawson's!

    4 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2012

    For me, this book was a revelation. It didn't move anyone out of

    For me, this book was a revelation. It didn't move anyone out of my
    "top ten" list, but I hope my daughters read it when they are
    18ish. they are strident feminists at age 6 and 9. ya know....because
    that's how all kids are born.....as strident feminists. which is the
    exact thing about this book that causes me to call it a revelation.
    feminism isn't something you aspire too, or want. being a feminist isn't
    something you become. it's the opposite of feminism that's unnatural and
    enforced on us by people that don't have our best interests at heart. we
    are all born with the tools. they get taken away. this book helped me
    realize that I don't want those tools taken away from my kids. for that
    reason, I think *you* should read it.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2012

    A must read for women AND men

    Everyone, male or female, should read this book. Funny, fierce, and relevant as hell. The cover says it's a British Bossypants, but its much funnier, and more important, than that. Mixes memoir, humor, and polemic in a wonderfully readable way. Yeah, if you're squeamish and too precious for profanity it probably won't be your cup of tea. But women's bodies and lives are messy and real, and the way women's bodies and lives are cheapened and commodified, especially by the pronography industry, deserves to be called the bull**** that it is. Caitlin Moran comes across as someone you'd love to have a pint or two with down at the pub.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Thought provoking, funny

    No, it's not Jenny Lawson - she's a different kind of funny. This has some similar moments BUT is more of memoir/polemic. Happy to see feminism is alive and well in the world. Definitely worth reading!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 20, 2013

    Caitlin absolutely nails it

    This is a hilariously vulgar and accurate book about what some women experience with life. Only a snobbish bore wouldn't be able to find a good laugh in this book! Caitlin shares a very intimate part of what most women endure in their lives. Her profanity and honesty may bother some. But as a fellow user of profanity in a male dominated world where women are encouraged to be more ladylike with the way we speak, it is a breath of fresh air.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 14, 2012

    Do not waste your time

    All I can say about this book is that I with I had not bought it. It was boring to me.

    2 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2012

    Can not finish...

    Not good, do not buy!

    2 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2012

    Fantastic read... necessary for anyone who has or likes vaginas.

    Hilarious. I laughed so much while nursing my toddler that i woke her up. I would love to use excerpts of this in the feminism course i am teaching this fall.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Nothing funny about it and I was disappointed. I was laughing l

    Nothing funny about it and I was disappointed. I was laughing like a maniac while reading Jenny Lawrence's book, I love Chelsea Handler and Jen Lancaster, I anticipated this book to be in that genre. Repulsive, nothing funny about it offensive, never cracked a smile.

    2 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2013

    I don't understand why these books are published... the world do

    I don't understand why these books are published... the world doesn't need to know about her abortion, and all other terrible things she's done.  

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2013

    Rambles on and on

    I`m sure some people woukd like this, but she just goes off on tangents. A five minute story turns into an hour of uninteresting tales.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2012

    No Stars for You

    A MAJOR waste of my $ and time - one of the first books I couldn't even stand to read more than a few pages and I really did try!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2012

    One woman's funny and honest (sometimes painfully so) account of

    One woman's funny and honest (sometimes painfully so) account of her experience as a woman. If you are on the prudish side this book is not for you.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2012

    Not funny

    LAME I WAS EXITED AT FIRST THEN AT THE BEGGING IT WAS LAME

    1 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2014

    Important Read

    If you are of the female gender, read this book! READ IT!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2013

    Maybe if I was British?

    There was some humor and I definitely appreciated the overall message, but I found this to be quite difficult to finish and I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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