Welcome to the Nomo BOOK CLUB
For many, myself included, reading is a sanctuary, an escape.
For some, reading stories that always have a happy ending (for example, the ‘miracle baby’) can cause severe emotional distress and make us feel that our sanctuary is no longer a safe place.
I want to highlight more books that tell the other story — sometimes the miracle doesn’t happen, and that’s okay. Women are more than just wombs. That’s just as important in literature as it is in life.
Follow me as I share my favourite NoMo reads (‘Not Mothers’ — credit to Jody Day of Gateway Women for the terminology) featuring women who live a fulfillng, satisfying or just plain ol’ happy life without children. Whether this is because they chose to be childfree, weren’t able to have children, or just never got around to it.
Due to the expressiveness of the written word, there may be triggers in some of the books I recommend and I have added a button which will take you to this information should you wish to check before you read. If there is anything I have not picked up on, get in touch and I will add it to the page.
FEATURED BOOKS for self discovery
Since finding my tribe on Gateway Women, I have been so inspired to find and help other women struggling to navigate the unexpected (and often unwanted) life of childlessness. These two books have helped immeasurably and I recommend you start here if you are at the beginning of your journey through this new reality.
FICTION BOOKS WITH STRONG FEMALE LEADS
— charlotte wood
Sylvie, Jude, Wendy and Adele have a lifelong friendship of the best kind: loving, practical, frank and steadfast. But when Sylvie dies, the ground shifts dangerously for the remaining three.
These women couldn’t be more different: Jude, a once-famous restaurateur with a spotless life and a long-standing affair with a married man; Wendy, an acclaimed feminist intellectual; Adele, a former star of the stage, now practically homeless.
Struggling to recall exactly why they’ve remained close all these years, the grieving women gather for one last weekend at Sylvie’s old beach house. But fraying tempers, an elderly dog, unwelcome guests and too much wine collide in a storm that brings long-buried hurts to the surface – a storm that will either remind them of the bond they share, or sweep away their friendship for good.
*Blurb taken from Amazon UK
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine — Gail Honeyman
Click the image to buy your copy now from Amazon UK
Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive – but not how to live.
Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend.
Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything.
One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted – while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life.
Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than… fine?
An astonishing story that powerfully depicts the loneliness of life, and the simple power of a little kindness
*Blurb taken from Amazon UK
short stories and novellas
middle, lost, and found — jamie ford
A very short (27 page) novella from the author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. The story takes a closer look at one of the secondary characters who is struggling with her marriage and figuring out what her life has meant.