We need a Women's Prize for Non-Fiction, these books prove it

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Author Kate Mosse is looking to launch an annual book award for non-fiction works by women.

The good news is she’s already secured a benefactor, now she just needs sponsors to make it a reality.

‘I believe that books can change the world,’ she told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. ‘And I still believe that, in these rather challenging times, having expert work from whoever has written it all over the world matters.’

But why is it so important that we have a non-fiction prize for women?

Kate told the radio show: ‘There is extraordinary non-fiction being published by women but it appears that, for whatever reason, something like 75% of non-fiction that’s reviewed is by men or edited by men.

‘Only a third of books that ever make it on the best of the year [lists] in non-fiction are by women, and the same is true in terms of who gets shortlisted for non-fiction prizes.

‘And I still think prizes matter, because prizes put exceptional works, works of quality, in front of men and women who will love them.’

Essentially, the author believes the new award would allow women’s work to be seen as ‘valuable and global,’ because it will give them their moment in the light.

There’s no shortage of books that would fit the bill either – just think of all the titles that have launched in recent years helping women to learn about their health, for example.

Here at Metro, we are all about giving voices the platform they deserve, which is precisely what the non-fiction award will do.

But until it’s a reality, here are our top picks for non-fiction written by women.

Back to Earth

NASA Astronaut Nicole Stott shares her vision to help protect earth after seeing our planet from outer space.

Stott imparts the lesson that everyone should live like a crewmember, not like a passenger. After all, when disaster strikes in space, the astronauts have to work together to save themselves.

Get it here.

What I Wish People Knew About Dementia

Wendy Mitchell was diagnosed with early onset dementia at 58-years-old and shares her experience through witty anecdotes.

It’s practical and enlightens readers on the topic of dementia and what she wants them to know about the disease.

Get it here.

Couples therapist and former chair of the British Psychoanalytic Council, Susanna Abse, gives us expert advice on relationships and how to navigate love.

It covers why and how we love, as well as how to cope with infidelity and changing roles within a relationship.

Get it here.

Unlawful Killings: Life, Love and Murder

Old Bailey judge, Her Honour Wendy Joseph, takes us through the inner workings of the crown court from a unique vantage point.

The book covers six high profile murder and manslaughter cases and the step-by-step of what happens in the court room.

If you’ve ever wanted to know exactly what it’s like to be a murder trial judge and a witness to human good and bad – this is for you.

Get it here.

This data driven work by Caroline Criado Perez provides a fresh perspective on the unseen bias in our everyday lives.

It covers everything from government policy and medical research, to technology, workplaces, urban planning and the media.

Get it here.

We Are Electric: The New Science of Our Body’s Electrome

Award-winning science writer Sally Adee explores the history of bioelectricity in our bodies and the impact it can have on our health.

Bioelectricity has the ability to regenerate cells, organs, even limbs, and can slow ageing and so much more, Adee tells all.

Get it here.

Professor Sue Black talks us through what we can learn from our bones and they stories they can tell about our experiences.

What we eat, where we go, everything we do leaves a trace and Sue tells us how we can decipher it.

Get it here.

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