Retrato do autor
9+ Works 359 Membros 2 Críticas

About the Author

Anna Holmes is a writer whose work has appeared in Glamour, Entertainment Weekly, Harper's, Sports Illustrated, and the New York Times. She was born and raised in Northern California and lives in New York City.

Includes the name: Anna Holmes

Obras por Anna Holmes

Associated Works

Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading (2009) — Contribuidor — 351 exemplares, 26 críticas


Conhecimento Comum

Data de nascimento
20th century
Locais de residência
Los Angeles, California, USA
New York City, New York, USA



This is a truncated version of my full review [ ].

The Book of Jezebel has been called a feminist text/coffee table book that will be on the coffee table of every third-wave feminist. NPR suggests you choose it over the latest Bridget Jones book! I suggest that you should instead send the $27 to your local abortion fund, Planned Parenthood or other fave feminist organization.

Basically, "We can do better feminism."

Admittedly, as a critic of Jezebel, I went in wanting to not like the book. I tried to talk myself into being fair, especially after I saw that Kate Harding was a lead writer on it. As a disclaimer, Kate & I went to high school together, have hung out a few times since reconnecting at a Shakesville meet-up and she's bought Girl Scout cookies from my daughter. I also admire her brilliance. So the book can't be that bad, right? I went right for my personal music moment in the book...To the L's!

WHAT?! No Lilith Fair? OK, they covered it under Sarah McLachlan then...WHATTHEFUCK?! After cryptically posting to my FB page about this egregious error, I was told that an online second edition would be created and this error would be corrected. And it has. While I won't spend time outlining every person or idea I feel was left out, I will say that I do not think those left out on purpose, but as editor Anna Holmes points out in an interview with the Washington Post, "just were not thought of."

Thus began my journey to read the book in order, cover to cover. Come on with me as I Frodo this book...

It starts off strong with a full-page photo of Bella Abzug. Then I read the first entry on Aaliyah. Oh, my...I was not a huge fan of Aaliyah, so for me to read it and think, "This does not do justice to her legacy," says a lot. So let's move on my precious...We get to a pretty good entry on Abigail Adams. Jezebel defines her as "the baller behind President John Adams who was the real brains behind the American Revolution (p 6)." I chuckle. Then I hit "adoption" and I throw the book like Frodo tosses the ring:

"If you're pregnant and cannot raise the child yourself, antichoicers would have you believe this is a relatively easy process and morally superior alternative to abortion, even thought it means enduring forty weeks of pregnancy, labor, and any complications that might arise from those, then handing the baby over to stranger while you're physically exhausted and maximally hormonal (p 6-7)"

Now I've written about adoption before and the idea that feminists are best suited to look after the birth mother. I think everyone should read, "The Girls Who Went Away," before saying adoption is the best choice for an unwanted/planned pregnancy. But this description is offensive and not just in the normal Jezebel offensive manner. OK, deep breath...let's keep moving.

Overall I did end up pretty "meh" about the whole book. There are some excellent entries (A League of Their Own, Buffy Summers, Venus & Serena Williams, and Princess Diana), but also some low points such as summing up Deidre McCloskey's awesomeness with this entry: "As far as we know, the first out trans woman who's also a famous economist (p 179)." For me, she's important to know because lately she's been calling into question the idea of "statistical significance" and I think as feminists, we like people who question science in a manner that ensures that good science prevails.

I asked a few #NoJez folks what they would look up in "The Book of Jezebel," and the most requested idea was cis/transgender. I will say that I think their entries on these terms are fairly good despite the McCloskey entry.

But overall, the "meh" feeling came from a sense that some entries were just super shortchanged. That some individuals received well-rounded entries and others did not. I know not every entry can be perfect, but some glaring omissions did occur.

I also feel that the time and energy given to riot grrrl over all other musical genres was short-sighted, to say the least of the amazing feminist work in hip-hop, country and rap, not to mention the aforementioned Sarah McLachlan and her contemporaries. There were also entries that were rightly critical of the person or idea (Helen Thomas, Naomi Wolf), but others did not get that same critical eye (Gloria Steinem, SlutWalk).

Overall, "The Book of Jezebel" is uneven in how it treats lady things, presents some ideas in too snarkastic of a light and overall is just ok. It's not a terrible book, but if you are looking for something to give a young woman who might need a nudge towards claiming the feminist label there are plenty of other gift ideas.

full review at
… (mais)
roniweb | 1 outra crítica | May 30, 2019 |
This review is based on an advanced electronic copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Fellow feminists, put this in your must have coffee table book of the year.

Let's start with my disclaimer above. I haven't seen a hard copy of this book, what I'm hoping for is better illustrations. Glossy coffee table book magic illustrations. The illustrations and pictures in the e-book left me a little flat. I'm hoping for something more beautiful, I need to get down to a bookstore and see.

Moving on to actual content this book is funny, sassy, and totally unapologetic. You're getting far-left feminist entries, if you don't hail from that camp or you lack a sense of humor about your politics, religion, etc. this book is definitely not for you. The entries are absolutist with a healthy bias towards women, people of color, the poor, and the LGBT community. Punches are not pulled. Since it's written and edited by the fine people that run taking a peek at their website is a pretty good litmus test on whether or not this book is for you.

My other small complaint is that while the book is comprehensive in the range of things that it covers, (entries range from abortion to Little House on the Prairie to Michelle Bachmann) at times it lacks depth in the entries. Not a single entry covered more than two pages and most are just a few sentences. I think that it would be useful to have more said about prominent feminists, civil rights leaders, and movements.

That being said, while this book is educational in a way, I think the intent is to be more entertaining and it achieves that very very well.
… (mais)
steadfastreader | 1 outra crítica | Mar 18, 2014 |

You May Also Like

Associated Authors


Also by
½ 3.6

Tabelas & Gráficos