by Kate Bolick
Reviewed by Molly Ford
There are 158 million women in the United States, and 102 million of them are single. In this groundbreaking new book, based off a 2011 Atlantic magazine cover story, Kate Bolick examines why, how and what the future holds for the growing number of these women.
Guided by her own journey as a single woman and her experiences as a writer in New York City, Bolick’s stories give color and life to the statistics she shares about being a single woman in America.
To give a more complete view of single women throughout American history, Bolick weaves in anecdotes from her late mother’s life and also profiles five pioneering women from the past century who have defined and embodied being single. These women include such notables as journalist Neith Boyce and essayist Maeve Brennan.
Bolich has richly researched each of these “awakeners,” as she calls them. By including quotes from their original work, visiting their homes and talking to surviving relatives and friends, “Spinster” becomes as much a historical read as a commentary on contemporary singleness.
And although it’s the title of her book, Bolich puts the somewhat derogatory label of “spinster” to rest for good, showing how single woman have been a rich, if slightly ignored, part of American history, and how they are influencing culture and lifestyles choices across the country today.
If you want to know more about this powerful and intriguing demographic shaping life in America, this is your read.
To read more reviews by Molly Ford, visit www.smartprettyandawkward.com.