6 Memoirs About Breast Cancer To Keep The Conversation Going All Year Long

If the world seems a little pinker lately, that is because October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and everyone from national brands to your local coffee shop are using different products and promotions to inform the public about the disease that claims the life of one woman every 13 minutes. But one of the best ways to learn about it and those who have experienced it is by reading memoirs about breast cancer. They're insightful, emotional, and they will give you a better understanding of what it means to live, recover, and even die from the disease.

Books serve many purposes. They're an endless source of entertainment and education, a constant source of inspiration and imagination. They breed empathy and compassion and understanding. In the case of memoirs about breast cancer, they can be all of these things as well as an effective tool for raising awareness.

One in eight women will have a breast cancer diagnosis in her lifetime, but the effects of the disease touch everyone. Raise your own awareness off it by reading one of these six memoirs about breast cancer. They will make you laugh, they will make you cry, and they will make you learn.

'Dangerous Boobies: Breaking Up with My Time-Bomb Breasts' by Caitlin Brodnick

When she tested positive for the BRCA1 gene mutilation at the age of 28, public speaker and comedian Caitlin Brodnick decided to have a preventative double mastectomy. Dangerous Boobies, her hilarious and honest memoir about breast cancer, body image, addiction, and mental health, chronicles Brodnick's diagnosis and the journey towards body positivity that unexpectedly followed.

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'The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying' by Nina Riggs

Celebrated poet and essayist Nina Riggs was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 37, and within a year, she learned it was terminal. The Bright Hour, an instant New York Times bestseller frequently compared to When Breath Becomes Air, is the author's heartbreaking but ultimately hopeful account of learning to live life to the fullest, to find beauty in every experience, even in the the face of death.

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'The Middle Place' by Kelly Corrigan

In The Middle Place, acclaimed essayist Kelly Corrigan opens up about life, marriage, motherhood, family, and what it was like to learn her father had late-stage cancer shortly after being diagnosed with breast cancer herself. Equal parts funny and emotional, it's not just a survivor's memoir, it's also a story about love, family, and learning to grow up.

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'Flat: Reclaiming My Body from Breast Cancer' by Catherine Guthrie

After years writing about women's health and breast cancer, Catherine Guthrie suddenly found herself in the shoes of so many people she reported on when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at thirty-eight. Flat is the devastating account of the medical journey through two bouts of cancer that followed, which included failed treatments, botched surgeries, doctor errors, and more. A painful and eye-opening memoir about womanhood, cancer, and the world of medicine, this book tells so much more than a cancer story.

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'Twisting Fate: My Journey with BRCA―from Breast Cancer Doctor to Patient and Back' by Pamela Munster M.D.

Dr. Pamela Munster has advised thousands of women on how to cope with breast cancer during, but not even that could prepare her for her own diagnosis. In Twisting Fate, an empowering and informative memoir, the leading oncologist opens up about what it was like to go from doctor to patient and shares practical tips for dealing with both the medical and emotional facets of a cancer diagnosis.

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'Survival Lessons' by Alice Hoffman

After being diagnosed with cancer, beloved author Alice Hoffman wrote a short but powerful book about making it through the tough times. It's not a straightforward memoir or a typical "cancer story," but Survival Lessons is an intimate and inspiring collection of suggestions for anyone who wants to find beauty even in the ugliest of times.

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