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Point72 Shares Book Recommendations to Celebrate Women’s History Month

March 2024

To celebrate Women’s History Month, we asked members of Point72’s Women in Finance Network to share reading recommendations that honor women’s achievements. Take a look below for books that bring light to significant—and sometimes overlooked—female figures across politics and business, as well as novels and firsthand stories on women’s perseverance and ongoing struggles for representation.

Anne Wymard, Market Intelligence: I recently read “The Daughters of Yalta” by Catherine Grace Katz for my book club. The book captures the unofficial yet influential roles of the daughters of some of the most powerful political leaders during the Yalta Conference in 1945, which brought together Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Joseph Stalin. Not only did the unique lives and ambitions of the women central to the story stand out to me, but so did the deep research that went into producing such a detailed depiction of the conference and the relationship between these women and their fathers.


Hollis Hanley, L/S Equity: “Overlooked No Moreis a recurring feature in The New York Times that retroactively publishes the obituaries of individuals who were previously overlooked. The effort was launched in 2018 for International Women’s Day and is now a weekly feature, frequently highlighting the lives of individuals who played a significant role in shaping today’s society.


Laura Sterner, Global Head of Capital Development and Investor Relations: I really enjoyed the “Magnificent Life of Marjorie Post” by Allison Pataki, which details the history of Post Cereal, the building of Mar-a-Lago, and a strong woman of her time.


Kristen Sullivan, Finance: If you’re interested in a biography, I’d recommend “The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It” by Tilar J. Mazzeo. The book is about the life of Barbe-Nicole Clicquot Ponsardin, who after her husband’s death in 1805 took over and grew Veuve Clicquot into the iconic champagne maker it is today. It’s a fascinating tale of one of the world’s first great businesswoman and a true visionary.


Deirdre Alphenaar, Market Intelligence: I have two books by author Carla Power: “Home, Land, Security—Deradicalization and the Journey Back from Extremism” and “If the Oceans Were Ink—Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran.” In both books, Power uses human stories to bridge ideas across different perspectives and challenge our own world views while giving us a glimpse behind media headlines. The stories in “Home, Land, Security” are often told through the unique view of motherhood, where Power tackles the complex topic of radicalization and extremism. In “If the Oceans Were Ink,” she takes a yearlong journey of conversations with the Dean of Cambridge Islamic College who is known for his unique research documenting the contributions and biographies of thousands of female scholars around the world.


Krista Murphy, Chief Administrative Officer: I’d recommend “Lessons in Chemistry” by Bonnie Garmus. The novel follows a brilliant chemist navigating the challenges of societal expectations for women in the 1960s. The book is smart, funny, and entertaining, while delivering powerful messages of resilience, empowerment, and representation. I was inspired by the main character’s unapologetic pursuit of her goals and the power that comes from staying true to oneself.


Malika Niazi, Technology: A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini is a powerful story set in Afghanistan that pulls the reader into the lives of two women. Their stories are heartbreaking and inspiring all at once, emphasizing the strength of the human spirit even in the most challenging circumstances. This book stayed with me and made me reflect on the privileges I took for granted. It takes you deep into the heart of a country and its people, opening one’s eyes to the realities of life in a part of the world that you may know little about, and is bound to leave a lasting impression.


Meredith Smart, Compliance: A book I enjoyed related to my line of work is “Spider Woman: A Life,” which is the autobiography of Lady Brenda Hale, who rose from humble beginnings to become the first woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court in the UK. Her motto is, “women are equal to everything,” and is responsible for helping bring more equality in the UK on issues such as divorce, domestic violence, mental health, and children’s rights. While potentially a lesser-known figure than her female US counterparts, she garnered a much broader following and appreciation in 2019 when she delivered a landmark ruling against the sitting UK Prime Minister, while wearing a large (fake, it turns out) diamond brooch in the shape of a spider.

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