93 books like To Die for

By Lucy Siegle,

Here are 93 books that To Die for fans have personally recommended if you like To Die for. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Song of the Shirt: The High Price of Cheap Garments from Blackburn to Bangladesh

Tansy E. Hoskins Author Of Foot Work: What Your Shoes Are Doing to the World

From my list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a journalist and author writing (mostly) about labour rights and the politics of the fashion industry. This work has taken me to Bangladesh, Kenya, Macedonia, and the Topshop warehouses in Solihull. I am the author of Foot Work – What Your Shoes Are Doing To The World, an exposé of the dark origins of the shoes on our feet. My award-winning first book Stitched Up – The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion, is available in six languages and was selected by Emma Watson for her "Ultimate Book List".

Tansy's book list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry

Tansy E. Hoskins Why did Tansy love this book?

This is an award winning book by an extraordinary social commentator who turned his anthropological eye to the Bangladeshi garment industry in the aftermath of Rana Plaza – the 2012 factory collapse that killed 1,138 people. This is painstaking and sensitive work documenting the lives of workers and the poverty and instability that drives people into garment factories. It is also a detailed explanation of how Rana Plaza was the latest in a long list of industrial homicides that stretches back to imperialism and the East India Company. It is exceptional.

By Jeremy Seabrook,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Song of the Shirt as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Oh, Men, with Sisters dear! Oh, Men, with Mothers and Wives! It is not linen you re wearing out, But human creatures lives! Stitch stitch stitch, In poverty, hunger and dirt, Sewing at once, with a double thread, A Shroud as well as a Shirt. --from The Song of the Shirt by Thomas Hood (1843) Labour in Bangladesh flows like its rivers -- in excess of what is required. Often, both take a huge toll. Labour that costs $1.66 an hour in China and 52 cents in India can be had for a song in Bangladesh -- 18 cents. It…


Book cover of Sweatshop Warriors: Immigrant Women Workers Take On the Global Factory

Tansy E. Hoskins Author Of Foot Work: What Your Shoes Are Doing to the World

From my list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a journalist and author writing (mostly) about labour rights and the politics of the fashion industry. This work has taken me to Bangladesh, Kenya, Macedonia, and the Topshop warehouses in Solihull. I am the author of Foot Work – What Your Shoes Are Doing To The World, an exposé of the dark origins of the shoes on our feet. My award-winning first book Stitched Up – The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion, is available in six languages and was selected by Emma Watson for her "Ultimate Book List".

Tansy's book list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry

Tansy E. Hoskins Why did Tansy love this book?

This is such an inspirational book from the heart of the anti-globalisation movement in 2001. It documents the lives of immigrant women working in underground sweatshops not just in the USA but right across the world. It resolutely stands as a monument against the ‘down trodden’ woman stereotype and welcomes you into an often ignored world where workers are fighting back against some of the biggest corporations on the planet.

By Miriam Ching Yoon Louie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sweatshop Warriors as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this up-close and personal look at the heroines who make family, community, and society tick, Miriam Ching Yoon Louie showcases immigrant women workers speaking out for themselves, in their own words. While public outrage over sweatshops builds in intensity, this book shows us who these workers really are and how they are leading campaigns to fight for their rights.

In-depth, accessible analyses of the immigration, labor, and trade policies, which together have forced these women into the most dangerous, poorly paid jobs, dovetail with vivid portraits of the women themselves. Louie, a longtime writer/activist and well-known figure in feminist,…


Book cover of Labor, Global Supply Chains, and the Garment Industry in South Asia: Bangladesh After Rana Plaza

Tansy E. Hoskins Author Of Foot Work: What Your Shoes Are Doing to the World

From my list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a journalist and author writing (mostly) about labour rights and the politics of the fashion industry. This work has taken me to Bangladesh, Kenya, Macedonia, and the Topshop warehouses in Solihull. I am the author of Foot Work – What Your Shoes Are Doing To The World, an exposé of the dark origins of the shoes on our feet. My award-winning first book Stitched Up – The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion, is available in six languages and was selected by Emma Watson for her "Ultimate Book List".

Tansy's book list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry

Tansy E. Hoskins Why did Tansy love this book?

This is an anthology of work about the Bangladeshi garment industry in the months and years following the Rana Plaza factory collapse that killed 1,138 people. It is rigorous academic work that doesn’t shy away from asking hard questions, and which seeks to tackle the gigantic problem of how to end exploitation in the garment industry.

By Sanchita Banerjee Saxena,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Labor, Global Supply Chains, and the Garment Industry in South Asia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book argues that larger flaws in the global supply chain must first be addressed to change the way business is conducted to prevent factory owners from taking deadly risks to meet clients' demands in the garment industry in Bangladesh.

Using the 2013 Rana Plaza disaster as a departure point, and to prevent such tragedies from occurring in the future, this book presents an interdisciplinary analysis to address the disaster which resulted in a radical change in the functioning of the garment industry. The chapters present innovative ways of thinking about solutions that go beyond third-party monitoring. They open up…


Book cover of Slave to Fashion

Tansy E. Hoskins Author Of Foot Work: What Your Shoes Are Doing to the World

From my list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a journalist and author writing (mostly) about labour rights and the politics of the fashion industry. This work has taken me to Bangladesh, Kenya, Macedonia, and the Topshop warehouses in Solihull. I am the author of Foot Work – What Your Shoes Are Doing To The World, an exposé of the dark origins of the shoes on our feet. My award-winning first book Stitched Up – The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion, is available in six languages and was selected by Emma Watson for her "Ultimate Book List".

Tansy's book list on workers’ rights in the fashion industry

Tansy E. Hoskins Why did Tansy love this book?

This book is an excellent chance to hear straight from the people on the sharp end of the fashion industry. From India to Cambodia, it is full of detailed interviews with garment workers and workers’ rights advocates. As well as taking you behind the scenes of the fashion industry, it also serves as a best practise guide – from a real industry expert – for how fashion could one day be made fair and sustainable.

By Safia Minney,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Slave to Fashion as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Slave to Fashion offers hope of a fairer, more ethical world and gives the reader plenty of tools to navigate a challenging fashion system.”―Livia Firth

There are over 35 million people trapped in modern slavery today―the largest number of slaves in modern history. This is fueled by the global demand for cheap labor―which is what makes the fast fashion industry work.

Slave to Fashion is a highly accessible book which uses brilliant design, personal stories, and easy-to-grasp infographics to raise awareness among common brand consumers.

Fair trade and sustainable fashion expert Safia Minney draws on her extensive knowledge and personal…


Book cover of The Value of Nothing

Uwe Westphal Author Of Ehrenfried and Cohn: Goodbye, Berlin - The Last Fashion Show

From my list on fashion and the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

I published the novel Ehrenfried & Cohn in 2016 about the decimation of the Jewish fashion industry in Berlin by the Nazis. I studied at the University of Arts in Berlin and became a fashion reporter for newspapers. Later I worked as a producer and journalist for German Public Broadcasting, the BBC in London, and PBS and CBS in New York City. I currently share my time between London and Berlin writing fact books on Jewish fashion and as a lecturer on fashion history in the US.

Uwe's book list on fashion and the fashion industry

Uwe Westphal Why did Uwe love this book?

Fashion is, without any question, a matter of one's own taste. Or so one would think. But no other successful fashion designer has ever analysed and observed the New York fashion world of the 1950s to mid-60s as mercilessly and literarily as John Weitz did in his novel published in 1970. With his clearly English-influenced men’s designs he kept his distance from New York’s high society. Perhaps this was due to his unusual life path.

John Weitz, born to a famous Berlin Jewish family. To guarantee his education, in 1936 his parents send him to London. After his A-levels, John and a short apprenticeship emigrated to the US and worked after 1944 for the OSS (now the CIA) during the Second World War as an under-cover agent in German-occupied France and witnessed the liberation of the Nazi concentration camp Dachau.

Weitz's reputation as a men's fashion designer had the name…

By John Weitz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Value of Nothing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Here is the world of haute couture, racing cars, Seventh Avenue, Palm Beach, Sebring, New York, where the Beautiful People - and their vultures and hangers-on - pretend to live. It is a world where young Philip Ross, through a sexual arrangement that provides him with his first break, crawls onto the lowest rung of the fashion ladder and begins the great climb, over backs and bodies, from couturier's assistant to nationwide fame as an avant-garde American designer.


Book cover of A Bunch of Pretty Things I Did Not Buy

Amanda Sullivan Author Of Organized Enough: The Anti-Perfectionist's Guide to Getting -- and Staying -- Organized

From my list on to reimagine your relationship to stuff.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a professional organizer since 1999, I’ve realized that the problem isn’t so much that we are disorganized, but that we are out-matched. We have too much stuff, it is too cheap and we are too busy and we can’t keep up. If you really want to stay organized, you have to examine your relationship to stuff. Why we want what we want and buy what we buy. Less but better! 

Amanda's book list on to reimagine your relationship to stuff

Amanda Sullivan Why did Amanda love this book?

This tiny gem of a book was born when Lazarovic decided to go on a shopping diet and paint the things she coveted instead of buying them. In the first half of her wonderfully illustrated and hand-lettered book, she explains her evolution from “I want it” child, to mall-rat teen to coming of age in the age of fast fashion. She chronicles her clothes, her awakening to the downsides of late-stage capitalism, and ends with several wise tips to help slow our consumption. A dynamo of a political pill wrapped in utterly playful confection of art and humor. One thing I do not regret buying is this book!

By Sarah Lazarovic,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Bunch of Pretty Things I Did Not Buy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Like most people, Sarah Lazarovic covets beautiful things. But rather than giving in to her impulse to spend and acquire, Sarah spent a year painting the objects she wanted to buy instead. Based on a visual essay that was first published on The Hairpin, A Bunch of Pretty Things I Did Not Buy is a beautiful and witty take on the growing 'slow shopping' movement. Sarah is a well-known blogger and illustrator, and she writes brilliantly without preaching or guilt-tripping. Whether she's trying to justify the purchase of yet another particleboard IKEA home furnishing, debating the pros and cons of…


Book cover of The Corset

Kate Strasdin Author Of The Dress Diary: Secrets from a Victorian Woman's Wardrobe

From my list on featuring fashion.

Why am I passionate about this?

For as long as I can remember I have been absolutely gripped by the stories that old clothes can tell. From visiting fashion museums as a child to collecting books on the subject, I was drawn to the shapes, the fabrics, and the tales. I can remember a curator once telling me that clothes are the closest we can get to people in the past. They are the ghostly outlines of our ancestors and that has stayed with me. We give so much away about ourselves through the clothes we choose to wear and so they really do matter.

Kate's book list on featuring fashion

Kate Strasdin Why did Kate love this book?

I do love a novel with history and objects at the core and The Corset adds an extra layer of spine tingling to the mix as well.

Ruth is a poorly paid seamstress, awaiting trial for murder. She is visited by the well-to-do Dorothea who wants to hear her story. The object, the corset, lies at the heart of Ruth’s tale and every stitch that she made in the creation of high-end pieces for her mistress begins to carry a greater significance.

In a world of fast fashion I have become increasingly fascinated by the handmade, the art of the needle, and the skill of the maker and here it has a slightly sinister facet to it.

By Laura Purcell,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Corset as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Laura is a masterful writer, her deliciously gothic stories so skilfully woven that you can't get them out of your head even if you wanted to' Stacey Halls, author of The Familiars 'The Corset is a contender for my Book of the Year. Beautifully written, intricately plotted, a masterpiece' Sarah Hilary Is prisoner Ruth Butterham mad or a murderer? Victim or villain? Dorothea Truelove is young, wealthy and beautiful. Ruth Butterham is young, poor and awaiting trial for murder. When Dorothea's charitable work leads her to Oakgate Prison, she finds herself drawn to Ruth, a teenage seamstress - and self-confessed…


Book cover of Designer Dirty Laundry

Susie Black Author Of Death by Sample Size

From my list on humorous cozy mysteries set in the fashion industry.

Why am I passionate about this?

Like the protagonist in my Holly Swimsuit Mystery Series, I am a ladies’ swimwear sales exec. I love solving puzzles, asking a lot of questions, and am naturally curious (some narrow-minded people say I am nosy…go figure…LOL). So, writing mysteries set in the fashion industry was the natural next step for me to take. From the beginning of my career, I have kept a daily journal chronicling the interesting, quirky, and sometimes quite challenging people I have encountered as well as the crazy situations I’ve gotten myself into and out of. My daily journal entries are the foundation of everything I write.

Susie's book list on humorous cozy mysteries set in the fashion industry

Susie Black Why did Susie love this book?

I love cozy mysteries with a witty protagonist who usually discovers the corpse. Clever dialogue in a fashion setting, with wacky supporting characters get me laughing, and a twisty plot I can’t figure out keeps me turning the pages. Designer Dirty Laundry is all of that rolled up into one laugh-out-loud story. I credit this book and series with giving me the impetus to write my debut cozy.

By Diane Vallere,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Designer Dirty Laundry as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Wonderful read regardless of your fashion sense. Samantha Kidd could not be more entertaining and, surprisingly, relatable." ~Shawna, Reviewer

National bestselling author Diane Vallere delivers your new favorite fashionable amateur sleuth! Join Samantha Kidd as she trades high fashion for dirty laundry and learns a great wardrobe isn't enough to turn her life around, let alone catch a killer.

She expected the fashion industry to be ruthless. She wasn't prepared for it to turn deadly.

Ready to redesign her life, style expert Samantha Kidd accepts a job in her Pennsylvania hometown as a trend specialist. But her first day goes…


Book cover of Fashion on the Ration: Style in the Second World War

Jillianne Hamilton Author Of The Hobby Shop on Barnaby Street: A Heartwarming WW2 Historical Romance

From my list on daily life on the British homefront during WWII.

Why am I passionate about this?

I fell in love with English history around age 10 when I began reading historical fiction and non-fiction. I have maintained a history blog, The Lazy Historian, since 2015 and I published a casually written non-fiction book, The Lazy Historian’s Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII, in 2018. When I began writing my Homefront Hearts WWII romance trilogy, I threw myself into researching the well-documented daily lives of the English and the various challenges that came from “keeping calm and carrying on.”

Jillianne's book list on daily life on the British homefront during WWII

Jillianne Hamilton Why did Jillianne love this book?

In 1941, Britain was shocked to find out that the extra margarine coupons in their food ration books were actually to be used for clothing starting immediately since clothing was now also to be rationed. Clothes rationing, wartime makeup, wedding wear, uniforms (for men and women), restrictions placed on clothing design, fashion houses and magazines, “make-do and mend,” and more are all covered in this dense little book.

By Julie Summers,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Fashion on the Ration as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In September 1939, just three weeks after the outbreak of war, Gladys Mason wrote briefly in her diary about events in Europe: 'Hitler watched German siege of Warsaw. City in flames.' And, she continued, 'Had my wedding dress fitted. Lovely.'

For Gladys Mason, and for thousands of women throughout the long years of the war, fashion was not simply a distraction, but a necessity - and one they weren't going to give up easily. In the face of bombings, conscription, rationing and ludicrous bureaucracy, they maintained a sense of elegance and style with determination and often astonishing ingenuity. From the…


Book cover of Consuming Fashion: Adorning the Transnational Body

Sue Blundell Author Of Women in Ancient Greece

From my list on women in classical Greece and how to think about them.

Why am I passionate about this?

Since I retired from lecturing in Classical Studies I’ve been writing more pieces on women in the ancient world, and also some plays. One of them, 189 Pieces, is about the Portland Vase, a beautiful example of Roman glass whose label in the British Museum tells us that it was owned by the Duke of Portland. This is true—he’d inherited it—but it was bought at great expense by his grandmother, the wonderful Duchess of Portland. Giving women their place in history has been my aim in much of my work. Nowadays I’m obsessed with female footwear, and Cinderella, Goody Two-Shoes, and Carrie Bradshaw take up a lot of my time. 

Sue's book list on women in classical Greece and how to think about them

Sue Blundell Why did Sue love this book?

"The statements we make just by getting dressed in the morning." This book about fashion and dress codes, and how they interconnect with gender, sexuality, and class, is lively and thought-provoking. My own study of the women who appear in Greek vase paintings led me to look more closely at women’s relationship with their clothing. In particular their handling of shoes became a source of fascination, and in my current research I’m focussing on narratives around female footwear. In the book, Brydon’s chapter "Sensible Shoes" has been an inspiration. Stilettos, for example, are seen as being entirely ambiguous in their significance, items which can both empower and disable the wearer. Like the knife they are named after, they are double-edged. 

By Anne Brydon (editor), Sandra Niessen (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Consuming Fashion as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Clothing the body is one of the most complicated acts of daily existence. When a nun ponders red shoes, an architect knots his bowtie, a lesbian laces her Doc Marten's, or a nude model disrobes, each is engaging in a process of identity-making that is both intensely personal and deeply social. In an increasingly material world, negotiating dress codes is a nuanced art, informed by shifting patterns of power and authority, play and performance, as well as gender, sexuality, class, ethnicity and race. Drawing on ethnographic knowledge to connect theory and practice, authors reveal links between material culture, social and…


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