As many of us prepare to spend significant family time together in the coming weeks, it feels like a particularly good moment to explore nontraditional narratives and remember (or to remind fellow family members) that taking a different path shouldn’t be met with assumptions and unwanted advice. Whether you’re single, married, or divorced, Glynnis MacNicol’s memoir of her own adventures navigating these choices will move you deeply, make you think and ignite an important conversation. NO ONE TELLS YOU THIS was published by Simon & Schuster this summer, is getting shout outs left and right, so we’ve gathered a few here for your reading pleasure.
Esquire named NO ONE TELLS YOU THIS one of the 40 Best Nonfiction titles of 2018, citing it as creating “a new version of the feminine standard.” Her memoir is one of CBC’s selections for best Canadian Nonfiction, and a Financial Times Best Book of 2018.
And in this fascinating Atlantic piece on the film Mary Queen of Scots, “Hollywood Still Doesn’t Know What to Make of Childless Women,” Megan Garber writes about a few surprisingly skeptical responses to Glynnis’ work, emphasizing the necessity of her book. She quotes MacNicol, who says: “We don’t understand how to talk about women’s lives as fulfilling unless we incorporate babies or weddings. [There are] no stories about women over the age of 40, really, where they aren’t primarily accessories in their own lives or support systems.”
So if you’ve got a favorite single lady on your list, or just a bad-ass woman looking for a good read, this book is for them.