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Spunky Old Ladies


Are you a female over 50?

Do you dream about breaking stereotypes about the older and wiser generation?

Would you rather be out skydiving or riding roller coasters than knitting sweaters in a rocking chair?

If you answered yes to those questions than this booklist is for you!

The month of February was “Spunky Old Ladies Month”. In honor of this celebration, we have compiled a list of books written by or about spunky old ladies. Spunky Old Ladies are classified as women over 50, who are interested in living a regret-free life.

Most of these spunky old ladies are still alive and kickin’, while others lived out their lives in a brazen and animated manner before they passed. Whether they’re contemporary actresses, comedians and writers, or noted historical figures, we hope you’ll find a spunky old lady here that you’ll enjoy reading about!

Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams: A Biography
by Phyllis Lee Levin [B Ad02l]

Jane Addams
Jane Addams and the Dream of American Democracy: A Life
by Jean Bethke Elshtain [B Ad15e]

Madeleine Albright
Read My Pins: Stories From a Diplomat’s Jewel Box
by Madeleine Albright [Biography Albright]

Isabel Allende
The Sum of Our Days
by Isabel Allende [Biography Allende]

Dorothy Allison
Two or Three Things I Know for Sure
by Dorothy Allison [B Al557]

Julie Andrews
Home: A Memoir of My Early Years
by Julie Andrews [Biography Andrews]

Mother Angelica
Mother Angelica: The Remarkable Story of a Nun, Her Nerve, and a Network of Miracles
by Raymond Arroyo [B An39a]

Maya Angelou
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
by Maya Angelous [B An424]

Susan B. Anthony
Not For Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony: An Illustrated History
by Geoffrey C. Ward [305.42 War]

Lucille Ball
Ball of Fire: The Tumultuous Life and Comic Art of Lucille Ball
by Stefan Kanfer [791.452 BalYk]

Tallulah Bankhead
Tallulah, Darling: A Biography of Tallulah Bankhead
by Denis Brian [792.092 BanYb]

Ingrid Bergman
Ingrid: Ingrid Bergman, a Personal Biography
by Charlotte Chandler [791.432 BerYc]

Carol Burnett
This Time Together: Laughter and Reflections
by Carol Burnett [Biography Burnett]

Willa Cather
On the Divide: The Many Lives of Willa Cather
by David Porter [Biography Cather]

Coco Chanel
Sleeping With the Enemy: Coco Chanel’s Secret War
by Hal Vaughan [Biography Chanel]

Cher: A Biography
by J. Randy Taraborrelli [791.432 CheYt]

Julia Child
My Life in France
by Julia Child [B C4349]

Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks: Fifty Years of Mysteries in the Making
by John Curran [823 ChrYc]

Hillary Clinton
Living History
by Hillary Rodham Clinton [B C6158]

Bette Davis
Dark Victory: The Life of Bette Davis
by Ed Sikov [791.432 DavYs]

Phyllis Diller
Like a Lampshade in a Whorehouse: My Life in Comedy
by Phyllis Diller [792.2 Dil]

Queen Elizabeth
Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch
by Sally Bedell Smith [Biography Elizabeth II]

Geraldine Ferraro
Framing a Life: A Family Memoir
by Geraldine Ferraro [B F398]

Carrie Fisher
Wishful Drinking
by Carrie Fisher [Biography Fisher]

Ava Gardner
Ava’s Men: The Private Life of Ava Gardner
by Jane Ellen Wayne [791.432 GarYw]

Judy Garland
Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland
by Gerald Clarke [781.64 GarYc]

Whoopi Goldberg
by Whoopi Goldberg [817 Gol]

Emma Goldman
Living My Life
by Emma Goldman [B G558]

Ruth Gordon
Myself Among Others
by Ruth Gordon [B G654]

EmmyLou Harris
EmmyLou Harris: Angel in Disguise
by Jim Brown [Music 781.642 HarYb]

Debbie Harry
Deborah Harry
by Cathy Che [Music 781.66 Har]

Goldie Hawn
A Lotus Grows in the Mud
by Goldie Hawn [791.432 Haw]

Lillian Hellman
An Unfinished Woman: A Memoir
by Lillian Hellman [B H3665]

Katharine Hepburn
I Know Where I’m Going: Katharine Hepburn, a Personal Biography
by Charlotte Chandler [Biography Hepburn]

Diane Keaton
Then Again
by Diane Keaton [Biography Keaton]

Grace Kelly
High Society: The Life of Grace Kelly
by Donald Spoto [Biography Grace]

Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury: A Biography
by Margaret Wander Bonanno [791.432 LanYb]

Cloris Leachman
Cloris: My Autobiography
by Cloris Leachman [Biography Leachman]

Jane Lynch
Happy Accidents
by Jane Lynch [Biography Lynch]

Life With My Sister Madonna
by Christopher Ciccone [781.66 Madonna]

Shirley MacLaine
I’m Over All That: And Other Confessions
by Shirley MacLaine [Biography MacLaine]

Rue McClanahan
My First Five Husbands — and the Ones Who Got Away
by Rue McClanahan [791.452 McC]

Reba McEntire
Reba: My Story
by Reba McEntire [781.642 McE]

Ethel Merman
Brass Diva: The Life and Legends of Ethel Merman
by Caryl Flinn [Music 782.14 MerYf]

Bette Midler
Bette: An Intimate Biography of Bette Midler
by George Mair [781.64 MidYm]

Helen Mirren
In the Frame: My Life in Words and Pictures
by Helen Mirren [Biography Mirren]

Mary Tyler Moore
Growing Up Again: Life, Loves, and Oh Yeah, Diabetes
by Mary Tyler Moore [Biography Moore]

Grandma Moses
Grandma Moses
by Margot Cleary [SOS 759.13 fMosYc]

Sandra Day O’Connor
Lazy B
by Sandra Day O’Connor [B Oc515]

Georgia O’Keefe
Portrait of an Artist: A Biography of Georgia O’Keefe
by Laurie Lisle [759.13 OkeYl]

Dorothy Parker
Dorothy Parker: What Fresh Hell is This?
by Marion Meade [B P2172m]

Rosa Parks
Rose Parks
by Douglas Brinkley [B P233b]

Dolly Parton
Dolly: My Life and Other Unfinished Business
by Dolly Parton [781.642 Par]

Paula Poundstone
There’s Nothing in This Book That I Meant to Say
by Paula Poundstone [817 Pou]

Nancy Reagan
Nancy: An Intimate Portrait of My Years With Nancy Reagan
by Michael K. Deaver [B R228d]

Debbie Reynolds
Debbie — My Life
by Debbie Reynolds [791.432 Rey]

Condoleeza Rice
No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington
by Condoleeza Rice [Biography Rice]

Joan Rivers
I Hate Everyone…Starting With Me
by Joan Rivers [817 Riv]

Margaret Sanger
Margaret Sanger: An Autobiography
by Margaret Sanger [B Sa55m]

Maggie Smith
Maggie Smith: A Bright, Particular Star
by Michael Coveney [792.092 SmiYc]

Pattie Smith
Patti Smith: A Biography
by Victor Bockris [781.66 SmiYb]

Gertrude Stein
Gertrude and Alice
by Diana Souhami [Biography Stein]

Harriet Beecher Stowe
Loves of Harriet Beecher Stowe
by Philip McFarland [Biography Stowe]

Elizabeth Taylor
by J. Randy Taraborrelli [791.432 TayYt]

Margaret Thatcher
The Iron Lady: Margaret Thatcher, From Grocer’s Daughter to Prime Minister
by John Campbell [Biography Thatcher]

Marlo Thomas
Growing Up Laughing: My Story and the Story of Funny
by Marlo Thomas [Biography Thomas]

Harriet Tubman
Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom
by Catherine Clinton [B T785c]

Lana Turner
Lana: The Memories, the Myths, the Movies
by Cheryl Crane [Biography Turner]

Tina Turner
I, Tina
by Tina Tuner [Music 781.66 Tur]

Barbara Walters
Audition: A Memoir
by Barbara Walters [Biography Walters]

Betty White
If You Ask Me (and Of Course You Won’t)
by Betty White [Biography White]

Vanna White
Vanna Speaks
by Vanna White [791.452 Whi]

Vanessa Williams
You Have No Idea: A Famous Daughter, Her No-Nonsense Mother, and How They Survived Pageants, Hollywood, Love Loss and Each Other
by Vanessa Williams and Helen Tinch Williams [Biography Williams]

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah: A Biography
by Kitty Kelley [Biography Winfrey]

Compiled July 2012 carrie k | adapted for the web July 2012 sdc | last updated November 2016 sdc