Book Review: “Women Of Interest, The Ultimate Book of Women’s Trivia,” by Alicia Alvrez


by Kathy A. Megyeri 

Did you know that 64% of women sleep on the left side of the bed? Or that being a judge was the only career not open to women in ancient Egypt? How about that divorce rates are 38% lower in cities with major league baseball teams, or the fact that the very first Artichoke Queen was Marilyn Monroe in 1947?  

Throughout history, women have been the story tellers, the keepers of family history, and the wellspring of general knowledge, but men are deemed superior as dispensers of minutiae. However, in “Women of Interest, The Ultimate Book of Women’s Trivia,” by Alicia Alvrez, information about us, our lives, our history, our loves, and our personalities are collected to be savored, shared and gloated upon.  

Women as Inventors

Women invented the bulletproof vest, the square-bottomed brown bag, the fire escape, the game Monopoly, the laser printer, and windshield wipers. Female nurses earn about 5% more than their male counterparts. Over 55% of all U.S. purchases are controlled by women. So, women should revel in their greatness and enjoy each morsel but give thanks to writer, women’s studies scholar, and avid trivia fan Alvrez. She’s collected this extensive, educational, and enjoyable compilation of facts about women, which is her specialty.  

The book isn’t just a simple listing of trivia – the facts are put in context and interspersed with caricatures of famous women and their charming quotes like actress Jean Harlow, who answered a reporter who inquired about her morning routine by saying, “I like to wake up feeling a new man.”  Bette Davis divulged the secret to a good marriage as “separate bedrooms and separate bathrooms.” Elizabeth Taylor also famously said, “I’ve only slept with men I’ve been married to. How many women can make that claim?” and Dolly Parton said, “I would never stoop so low as to be fashionable,” or Audrey Hepburn’s finest piece of advice, “Elegance is the only beauty that never fades.” 

Celebrating Her Accomplishments

Thus, in this humorous compendium of facts about us women, the reader will gain immense pride in herself and her accomplishments. She will be delighted in learning such facts like researchers at Northwestern University who found that men change their minds two to three times more than women. This book is the perfect gift for women who love to laugh, gossip, play trivia, or just feel good about themselves and their accomplishments throughout history and about those the world over who advanced civilization. One reader advised, “Get this book for every woman in your life.” I was so delighted with my copy that I ordered more for each of my girlfriend’s birthdays.  

“Women Of Interest, The Ultimate Book of Women’s Trivia,” is by Alicia Alvrez (Mango, 2021, 224 pp.). Alvrez is also the author of “The Ladies’ Room Reader” and “Mama Says: The Best Advice from Some of The World’s Best Mothers.”