16 Must Read Books That Made The Women's Longlist


Last week we not only had International Women's day but the Women's Long List was released.

And at Iggy & Burt we cannot get enough of our books. You may have seen some of these reads featured before and we are pretty proud to say some of the books featured on the Women's Long List made it on to our previous monthly reads.

Here's a few more to add to your Spring reading list:

My Sister The Serial Killer

My Sister, The Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

Braithwaite tells the story of two sisters, nurse Korede and younger sister Ayoola, a clothing designer whose boyfriends seem to find themselves winding up dead under her claim of self-defence.

Korede, is always there to help clean up the mess, with the bleach and rubber gloves in tow.

That is until Ayoola’s newest boyfriend happens to be the doctor where Korede works as a nurse. The same doctor that Korede has been in love with and doesn’t want to see dead. 

Korede must decide who she will save, when saving one means sacrificing the other.

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Milkman By Anna Burns

Milkman by Anna Burns

Anna Burns takes on the Northern Ireland conflict but from the perspective of an 18-year-old girl who does not want to engage with the issues surrounding her and does not want to be noticed or deemed interesting.

Described as Middle Sister, the protagonist is trying to keep her mother from discovering her maybe boyfriend and to keep everyone in the dark about her encounter with Milkman. Who has taken a particular interest in her.

Burns creates a tale of gossip and hearsay, silence and deliberate deafness. It is a story of inaction with enormous consequences. 

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 Lost Children Archive

Lost Children Archive by Valerie Luiselli

Luiselli tells the story of a family from New York who embark on a road trip to Apacheria, a region of the US that used to be Mexico.

The mother who is a radio journalist becomes consumed by the news she hears on the radio, about thousands of children getting stranded at the southern border in detention centres. 

But as the road trip continues we gather that all is not well with this family.

Told through the voices of the mother and son, as well as through the tapestry of texts and images, including stories of migration and displacement, Lost Children Archive is a story of how we document our experiences, and how we remember the things that matter most to us.

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 Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss

Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss

In the north of England, Silvie and her family are living as if they are ancient Britons, surviving by the tools and knowledge of the Iron Age in an exercise of experimental archaeology.

Silvie begins to see, hear, and imagine another kind of life, one that might include going to university, travelling beyond England, choosing her own clothes and food, speaking her mind.

Moss’ story urges us to wonder how far we have come from the ‘primitive minds’ of our ancestors.

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Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

Emezi’s novel Freshwater explores the surreal experience of having a fractured self. Centring around young Nigerian women called Ada, who develops separate selves within her. All as a result of being born “with one foot on the other side.”

Narrated from the perspective of the various selves, Freshwater is a sharp evocation of a rare way of experiencing the world.

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Circe By Madeline Miller

Circe by Madeline Miller

A daughter is born to the god of sun and the mightiest of the Titans. She is named Circe, she is not powerful like her father and not alluring like her mother. Scorned and rejected by her kin, Circe is isolated and turns to mortals for companionship, leading her to discover witchcraft, a power forbidden to the gods.

Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her craft, drawing strength from nature. Crossing paths with many famous figures of Greek mythology including Hermes, Odysseus and the doomed Icarus.

In this world of gods, there is danger for a woman who stands alone as her independence draws the wrath of both men and gods.

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 Bottled Goods

Bottled Goods by Sophie Van Llewyn

When Alina’s brother-in-law defects to the West, she and her husband become persons of interest to the secret services, causing both of their careers to come to a halt.

As the strain takes its toll on their marriage, Alina turns to her aunt for help - the wife of a communist leader and a secret practitioner of the old folk ways.

Set in 70s communist Romania, this novella – in – flash draws upon magic realism to weave a talk of everyday troubles, that can’t be put down.

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 An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

The embodiment of the American dream is portrayed by newlywed couple Celestial and Roy. He is a young executive and she is an artist at the brink of an exciting career.

That is until Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit.

After struggling to hold on to the love that has been her centre she takes comfort in Andre, their closest friend. That is until Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, returning home to resume their life together.

Jones’ explores love, loyalty, race and justice as well as black masculinity and black womanhood in the 21stCentury.

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 Normal People by Sally Rooney

Normal People by Sally Rooney

Rooney tells the story of Connell and Marianne who grow up in the same small town in rural Ireland but are both from very different families.

After they both earn places at Trinity College in Dublin, they form a connection that lasts the years.

As well as being a political novel, it is a story about love and the impact that someone can have on another person’s life.

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Number One Chinese restaurant by Lillian Li

Number One Chinese Restaurant by Lillian Li

Set in Rockville, Maryland, the Beijing Duck House has been serving devoted regulars for decades. But the restaurant serves as a whole different world for the waiters and kitchen staff who have been loving and fighting within its walls.

When disaster comes to the Beijing Duck House, and the controlled chaos unravels, each character has to confront the conflicts that the fast-paced restaurant life had kept at bay. 

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 Ordinary People by Diana Evans

Ordinary People by Diana Evans

Set on 2008 in south London against the backdrop of Barack Obama’s historic election victory, Ordinary People is an intimate look at identity, parenthood, sex, grief, friendship, ageing and the fragile architecture of love, through the lives of two couples.

It is the story of our lives, and those moments that threaten to unravel us.

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Praise song for the butterflies by Bernice McFadden 

Praise Song For The Butterflies by Bernice McFadden 

An eye-opening account of the practice of ritual servitude in West Africa.

McFadden tells the story of Abeto Kata, who lives a comfortable life in West Africa. Raised by a stay at home mother and a father who is a government employee, Kata lives a quite idyllic lifestyle.

That is until her father sacrifices his daughter for religious atonement. Where for fifteen years she endured unspeakable acts. 

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 Remembered by Yvonne Battle Felton

Remembered by Yvonne Battle Felton

In 1910, Spring sits up with her son Edwards, who lies in a hospital bed dying, having been charged with committing a crime on the streets of Philadelphia.

He has been charged with driving a car into a shop window, but is he guilty? Can they find the truth? The police are sure that he was part of a darker agenda. 

Surrounded by ghosts and the wounded, Spring is forced to rewrite her past and face what could be a future without her child.

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Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott 

Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott

They were the elite, sipping martinis over Manhattan lunches, their lives consisted of exclusive yachts sailing the Mediterranean and private jets to the Caribbean.

They gossiped about sex, fame, love, money and power.

They never expected to be betrayed so absolutely.

After decades of intimate friendship, Truman Capote detonated a literary grenade, forever rupturing the elite circle he worked so hard to infiltrate.

Why did he do it?

To punish them?

To make them pay for manners, money and celebrated names?

Whatever was his motive Capote, committed professional and social suicide with his words.

Swan song is the tragic story of the literary icon of his age and the beautiful, wealthy, vulnerable women he called his Swans.  

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The Pisces by Melissa Border

The Pisces by Melissa Border

It’s been 9 years and Lucy is still writing her dissertation and she has just gone through a dramatic breakup with her boyfriend. 

Reaching rock bottom Lucy’s sister in Los Angeles insists she needs to dog sit for the summer.

Staying in a beautiful home in Venice Beach, Lucy can find little relief from her anxiety.

But everything changes when Lucy becomes entranced by an eerily beautiful swimmer while sitting on the beach alone one night.

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 The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

Briseis was a queen until her city was destroyed. Now a slave to Achilles, the man who butchered her husband and her brothers. Trapped in a world dominated and defined by men, can she survive to become the author of her own story.

Rediscover the greatest Greek myth retold by the witness that history forgot.

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