What I Know Now Review
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It’s not just you. Even the most successful and extraordinary women—celebrities, politicians, authors, and Olympic gold medallists—look back on their lives and wish they’d known when they were younger what they know now. They wish they’d been told to be independent, to enjoy time spent with loved ones who won’t be around forever, to do what they truly love.

In What I Know Now: Letters to My Younger Self, editor Ellyn Spragins gives 41 famous women the opportunity to sit down and write a letter to themselves as young women—to pass on the advice and wisdom that they wish they’d had back then. These women—from Madeline Albright and Queen Noor of Jordan to Jane Kaczmarek and Phylicia Rashad to Shannon Miller and Picabo Street—tell about the young women they once were. They reveal the ups and downs of their youth, the mistakes they made, and the steps that made them the successful women they are today.

While a few of the letters are silly and flippant (like author Naomi Wolf’s short note, giving herself tips on stocks, boyfriends, and birth control), most are thoughtful, sincere and moving. It’s an inspiring book that reminds readers that even the most extraordinary of women have lived through the same struggles, heartbreak, and hardship that the rest of us have. They’ve been insecure, too. They’ve made mistakes. They’ve fought with their own weaknesses.

This isn’t a book to read all at once. Instead, it’s best to read one or two at a time, allowing yourself to appreciate each one and take its advice to heart.

What I Know Now is an inspiring book that would make a great gift for any of the women in your life—no matter what their age.

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