A Mighty Girl's top picks of the best new books for children and teens about incredible women from around the world.
Gerda Lerner, the historian and scholar who pioneered the field of women's history, once said, "In my courses, the teachers told me about a world in which ostensibly one-half the human race is doing everything significant and the other half doesn’t exist." But increasingly, we are reclaiming history, telling the stories of the girls and women whose contributions to our shared story deserve to be celebrated! As parents and educators, it's also important that we tell these stories to all of our children, boys and girls alike, so that they live in a world where history has always been about the contributions of all of humanity.
In honor of Women's History Month, we've collected the best biographies that have been published in the past 12 months about remarkable, determined, trailblazing women! These books for children and teens feature a broad range of women in many different fields, from science to the arts to politics and activism, making them excellent additions to any bookshelf or school curriculum. Whether you're sharing a picture book biography at bedtime or introducing your teen to an inspiring new hero, these books will remind them to tell women's stories all year long!
For more books of inspiring girls and women from around the world, check out the hundreds of biographies and works of historical fiction in A Mighty Girl's History & Biography Collection.
Biographies of Mighty Girls & Women
Before they were feminist icons... they were babies! In this clever lift-the-flap book, the littlest readers get to imagine what inspiring women like Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, astronaut Mae Jemison, artist Frida Kahlo, and more were like as babies and toddlers. Clever cut-outs in each flap tie the adult woman to the baby girl — so even adults will love details like Ginsburg's dissenting collar becoming a baby's bib. With its empowering message that all babies can grow up to change the world, this board book is the perfect choice to raise daring feminists from day one!
Young Amelia Earhart dreamed of flying like a bird, so as an adult, she decided to learn how to fly a plane! Female pilots were few and far between, but Amelia wanted to prove that women could fly just as well as men. First, she set a female world record by flying at 14,000 feet; then, she flew across the Atlantic and Pacific oceans; and finally, she decided to try flying all around the whole world. This board book from the Little People, BIG DREAMS series, which also includes a board book about Maya Angelou, will inspire and empower the littlest readers.
"I look up to Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Let me tell you why..." This detailed board book is a great way to introduce babies, toddlers, and preschoolers to a woman you admire! The book distills Ruth Bader Ginsburg's inspiring attributes into page spreads with vibrant illustrations that are appealing for babies and toddlers and text that's interesting enough for preschoolers. Each spread includes a quote from RBG herself! This title from the I Look Up To... series are a great way to encourage girls to follow in these inspiring women's footsteps. For another release from this series, check out I Look Up To... Michelle Obama.
In Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History, Vashti Harrison introduced school-aged kids to inspiring role models they probably won't meet in their history books. Now, in this detailed board book, she adapts 18 of her profiles for preschool readers! With simple text and her trademark illustrations that throw back to classic mid-century children's literature, she shows kids a variety of heroes and role models in every field — and inspires them to dream of how they themselves might change the world.
Introduce new readers to the amazing life of Harriet Tubman with this Level Two I Can Read early reader series biography. Tubman was born enslaved and risked everything to escape — and then went back, leading 13 escapes so that others could be free. Then, during the Civil War, she urged African-American men to enlist; she spied on the Confederates; and she even led a battle! A timeline, historical illustrations, and a rare photograph of Tubman accompany this book, which was carefully vetted by Harriet Tubman expert Dr. Kate Larson.
Baseball-loving Kathryn Johnston desperately wanted to play in the Little League, but in 1950, most coaches wouldn't let girls try out. So she demanded that her mother cut off her braids so that she could try out as a boy. "Tubby" easily made the team, and Johnston played well enough that her coach kept her on even once she revealed the truth. Sadly, the following year, the Little League explicitly banned girls from playing, a policy that wasn't lifted until 1974, but Johnston had already made her mark on sports history. This portrait of a determined sport pioneer ends with a lovely detail: Johnston throwing out a ceremonial first pitch at Yankee Stadium in 2006.
Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina Supreme Court Justice, is the subject of the sixteenth picture book in the New York Times bestselling Ordinary People Change the World series. As a child, Sonia loved to read — especially Nancy Drew mysteries! When she saw Perry Mason on TV, she knew she wanted to be a lawyer. Many people thought Latina girls didn't grow up to be lawyers, and she faced other obstacles, too, including a diabetes diagnosis at the age of 9. Fortunately, she had people who believed in her — people who taught her to believe in herself. And because of that, she reached the highest court in the nation. A lively, conversational tone and colorful illustrations draw kids into this book, and inspire them to see how they too can change the world.
Jackie Kennedy is an American icon, but in addition to being stylish and elegant, she was determined and tireless. She was a talented journalist, an avid preservationist, and a diligent editor. As the First Lady, her cleverness and grace won the respect of people across the country and around the world when they realized that she was much more than a pretty face! In this vibrant picture book by the author and illustrator pair behind Just Being Audrey, kids will get a deeper picture of the life and gifts of this famous woman.
This box set of popular titles from the best-selling Ordinary People Change the World series features four female heroes: Amelia Earhart, Harriet Tubman, Jane Goodall, and Sacagawea. With its first person perspective and fun cartoon illustrations, Meltzer makes history come to life for children while striking a perfect balance between information and inspiration. Each picture book ends with photos, a timeline, a list of additional resources, and an inspiring quote from each groundbreaking woman who changed the world in her own unique way. For another box set from this series featuring books on Amelia Earhart, Rosa Parks, Abraham Lincoln, and Albert Einstein, check out the Ordinary People Change the World Gift Set.
From an early age, Billie Jean King loved sports. She discovered a love for tennis and became determined to be the best tennis player in the world. But as she got older, she also realized that people didn't take women athletes seriously — no matter how well they could play. So when retired player Bobby Riggs claimed that he could beat any woman tennis player — even one on the top of her game — King decided to show the world that everyone deserved a chance to play! The seventeenth picture book in the New York Times bestselling series Ordinary People Change The World celebrates the world champion tennis player who fought successfully for women's rights.
As a child, Clara Barton struggled with shyness and fear... but her beloved brother insisted that she would find a way to change the world. When he suffered a terrible injury, Clara helped him recover — and found her life's work. Clara Barton would go on to become a teacher, a nurse on the front lines of the Civil War, and the founder of the American Red Cross. This Step Into Reading level 3 early reader biography of this inspiring role model will encourage young readers to face their own fears and follow their dreams.
When Jane Goodall was a girl, her father gave her a toy chimpanzee, and Jubilee became her constant companion. Little did she know that her favorite stuffed animal would ignite a lifelong love of animals and a world-changing career! Jane would become famous for her pioneering research methods, her groundbreaking discoveries, and her work on conservation and animal rights. This uplifting new entry to the Little People, BIG DREAMS series will delight young animal lovers and encourage them to imagine their own inspiring futures. Other exciting volumes in this empowering series include books on L.M. Montgomery and Agatha Christie.
The internationally bestselling Little People, BIG DREAMS series pays tribute to groundbreaking women of science in this hardcover gift set! In this collection, kids will meet Ada Lovelace, Amelia Earhart and Marie Curie, three very different women whose contributions to science still resonate today. In each title, stylish illustrations and engaging text encourage kids to learn more about these women — and to dream big about their own futures. For another box set from this series, check out the Women in Art Boxed Gift Set.
Mary was always a dreamer — dreams and stories were the only place to escape her strict father and stepmother. As a young woman, she took up a challenge from the poet Lord Byron: create the best, eeriest ghost story. She was struggling to find an idea that she thought would win — until a dream about a monster coming to life became Mary Shelley's terrifying tale Frankenstein: or, the Modern Prometheus — one of the most popular stories of all time. This atmospheric book is part picture book biography, part inspiration for young artists, writers, and dreamers.
Katherine Johnson loved to count, and despite the prejudices against both women and African Americans, she was determined to find a way to make her love of math into a career. As one of NASA's "human computers," Johnson hand calculated elaborate equations... including the trajectories that helped launch the Apollo 13 mission to the moon. When disaster befell the Apollo 13 mission, it was Johnson's flight-path calculations that brought the astronauts safely home. This inspiring biography of the mathematician catapulted to fame by Hidden Figures celebrates a love of math and encourages kids to follow their passions. For another picture book about Johnson and her colleagues, check out Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race.
After Sara Josephine Baker lost her brother and father to typhoid fever, she knew she wanted to be a doctor. But when she graduated in 1898, few people wanted to see a woman doctor, so Dr. Jo took a job in public health working in Hell's Kitchen, one of New York's poorest neighborhoods. She realized that, by improving the health of children, she could improve the health of a whole community. Dr. Jo assigned visiting nurses to new mothers, designed safe infant clothing, set up milk stations, and created training and licensing for midwives — and her work saved over 90,000 children. This picture book biography of a groundbreaking woman in medicine highlights how simple innovations can have an enormous impact.
Ruth Asawa wanted to make the world a better place, and knew that art could build strength during times of great injustice — like when she and her family were sent to the Japanese-American internment camps. As an adult, she created unconventional sculptures from unexpected material, including many fountains — so many that she became known as the "Fountain Lady." She particularly loved exposing children to art, because, she said, "Art will make people better." In this exquisite and thoroughly researched picture book biography, young readers will learn about Asawa's inspiring life — and perhaps be inspired to create their own world-changing art.
Like many young girls of her time, Joan Procter hosted pretend tea parties... but unlike the other girls, she invited lizards, snakes, and other reptiles to her table! Joan loved all reptiles, and she became famous for carrying her favorite lizard everywhere she went, and even bringing a crocodile to school! When Joan grew up, she found her place: Curator of Reptiles at the British Museum, and the designer of the Reptile House at the London Zoo, where she once again hosted children's tea parties — this time with her pet komodo dragon! This lively biography of a groundbreaking, lizard-loving scientist is sure to delight young readers.
As a 7-year-old during WWII, Raye Montague toured a captured German submarine and immediately set her sights on becoming an engineer. Little did she know that sexism and racism would challenge her dream every step of the way. Raye ended up working at the US Navy as a typist, studying engineering at night. One day, when all the engineers were sick with the flu, she astonished everyone by completing all of their work. She went on to become the first person to design a ship on a computer and the Navy's first female ship designer. This inspiring picture book from the Amazing Scientists series celebrates a pioneer who changed ship design forever.
Rachel always loved the rhythms of the natural world, and every spring, she listened to the world revive and renew. But then, as an adult, she started noticing that certain sounds were missing. Some animals were disappearing, thanks to overuse of pesticides, and she knew she had to raise her voice before nature fell silent forever. This appealing picture book biography of Rachel Carson, the author of Silent Spring, captures Carson's dedication as well as her love of nature; it's sure to inspire kids to learn more about this icon of the environmental movement.
When Pura Belpré came to America in 1921, she brought with her the cuentos folklóricos of Puerto Rico. When she took a job at the New York Public Library as a bilingual assistant, she transformed library services by sharing diverse stories, championing bilingual literature, and publishing her tales so that she could "be like Johnny Appleseed [and] plant my story seeds across the land." This lush and colorful book celebrates Belpré's life and legacy, and encourages young storytellers to keep sharing their tales with the world. For a Spanish-language edition of this book, check out Sembrando historias: Pura Belpré: bibliotecaria y narradora de cuentos,.
As a girl, Emily Roebling was an eager learner — but girls didn't need to know math and science, and certainly not engineering. As an adult, her husband had an ambitious plan for a bridge that would "link Manhattan and Brooklyn," and when construction began, Roebling insisted on learning more about it. And when her husband fell ill, she stepped in, supervising every aspect of the project, and ensuring that the Brooklyn Bridge, one of New York's most iconic landmarks, was finished. This picture book biography celebrates the secret engineer who refused to give up on an architectural wonder.
Elizabeth Warren has always been a fighter, whether she was helping her struggling family make ends meet, becoming one of the few girls on the debate team, using her law degree to fight for hard-working families, or becoming the first female senator for Massachusetts. When she refused to be silent about her concerns about a nominee for attorney general, the criticism leveled against her became a feminist rallying cry: "She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted!" The first-ever picture book biography about this trailblazing senator is a celebration of persistence, passion, and the power of raising your voice for yourself and others.
Jane Jacobs decided that a city was like an ecosystem: "It is made of different parts — sidewalks, parks, stores, neighborhoods, City Hall... and people, of course. When they all work together, the city is healthy." So when a city planner proposed highways that would smash through New York neighborhoods, she knew that would destroy the city she loved. She rallied her neighbors to stop the plans — even getting arrested — but her courage changed the way that people think about city — and human — planning. This lively picture book fictionalizes Jacobs' life to capture the spirit of this determined, innovative woman.
When the Montgomery Bus Boycotts broke out to protest segregated seating, cook Georgia Gilmore wanted to help. She knew that the boycotters would need cars and gas, and for that, they needed money — so she recruited a bunch of her fellow cooks and bakers to make food to sell. Supporting the boycott was risky, so Gilmore only took cash, and whenever someone asked where the food or money came from, the answer was always the same: "nowhere." This celebration of a little-known figure of the Civil Rights movement celebrates the power of community and how one person can fuel a movement.
Growing up, both Geraldine (Jerrie) Mock and Joan Merriam decided they wanted to be pilots, and both of them were inspired by trailblazing pilot Amelia Earhart. In the 1960s, both women decided, independently, that they wanted to follow Earhart's planned route and circle the world — and they even planned their starts for the same day. When the news broke, there was only one option to the media and public transfixed by their story: turn their flights into a race. Mock would end up winning, but both women would end up fulfilling the dream of a lifetime! This picture book about the 1964 race between Mock and Merriam will introduce young readers to two little known but important figures in aviation history.
As a child growing up in Austria, Hedy Lamarr wanted to know how everything worked — she even took apart her toys! But she also loved acting out her favorite scenes from movies. As an adult, the world knew Hedy Lamarr as a glamorous movie star, but she had a secret: she was also an inventor. And in the middle of World War II, she created an invention for the U.S. Navy that would become the foundation for some of today's most important technologies, including WiFi, Bluetooth, and GPS! Author / illustrator pair Laurie Wallmark and Katie Wu, creators of Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code, team up once again for this compelling introduction to a little-known scientific talent.
As a child, Gwen Frostic suffered a mysterious illness that left her with symptoms similar to cerebral palsy, but she didn't let that stop her from filling her life with science and art. She loved nature, and she had both a creative gift and a knack for building. As an adult, she set up her own metal shop, and became one of the first people to experiment with plastic for creating art. Then, during World War II, with no metal to spare for her shop, she became a tool and die drafts person, helping build bomber planes — one of the few women in the job. This engaging picture book tells Frostic's story of combining art, nature, and engineering into a creative life unlike any other.
Young Temple Grandin loved building and hated hugs. She wanted to be hugged, but every time she tried, it felt too overwhelming to bear. But when she saw a calf being calmed by a special machine that gently squeezed its sides, she had an idea: she would build a hug machine, one that would let her get exactly the hug she needed... and maybe help her get the hugs she wanted, too. This empowering look at a pivotal moment in the life of the groundbreaking autism advocate aptly illustrates the experience of sensory overload, helping kids of all stripes appreciate the cleverness of Grandin's invention and the power of a hug.
Before most people in the world had even seen a movie, Alice Guy-Blaché was making them! The innovative filmmaker — the first female filmmaker in the world — would stop at nothing to create a truly exciting movie, experimenting with sounds, special effects, and more. She was also one of the first filmmakers to create a narrative fiction film — the precursor to the movies we enjoy so much today! In this vibrant picture book biography, Mara Rockliff introduces young readers to a creative force who changed the future of cinema forever.
Even as a child, Barbara Jordan's voice made people stand up, take notice, and listen! But what do you do with a voice like that? In Jordan's case, she used it to carry her to places that African American women didn't usually go in the 1960s: to law school, to the Texas state senate, and to the United States Congress. She also used it to give voice to the marginalized people around her, fighting for civil rights and equality. This powerful picture book biography celebrates the power of raising your voice and owning your confidence.
In this much-anticipated follow-up to She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed The World, author Chelsea Clinton goes beyond America's borders to introduce young readers to inspiring women from around the globe! Scientists, athletes, artists, and activists: these women refused to listen to the naysayers and insisted on making their voice heard. From famous names like J.K. Rowling, Malala Yousafzai, and Marie Curie, to less familiar ones like Leymah Gbowee, Carline Herschel, and Kate Sheppard, these profiles will show kids that women everywhere prove that persistence is power every day. Both volumes are also now available in an attractive She Persisted Boxed Set.
Emma Gatewood had a tough life, so one day, at age 67, she decided to go for a nice long walk... and she became the first woman to through-hike the Appalachian Trail solo! She wore a pair of Keds sneakers and carried almost nothing with her, relying on her foraging skills and on the help of residents near the trail. When she finished her journey, she not only became famous across the country, she also ensured that this breathtaking trail would be preserved and protected. This inspiring story of grit and girl power will get kids imagining their own adventures! For another picture book about Gatewood, check out When Grandma Gatewood Took A Hike.
Two hundred years ago, Mary Shelley and her friends were competing to write the best ghost story, but Mary had yet to be inspired. She wanted to be an author, like Mary Wollstonecraft, the mother she'd never known who inspired her to prove that "a woman’s writing could be just as important as a man’s." Then, she had a strange dream, one that featured a man who was not a man. Her story about Victor Frankenstein's creation, and the questions it raised about who was the real monster, became one of the world's most famous novels. This atmospheric picture book elegantly invites young readers to learn more about this iconic story.
As a child, Sonia Sotomayor devoured books. For her, they were everything: a connection with her family in Puerto Rico, a guide when she was diagnosed with diabetes, and a consolation and escape from grief when her father died. Most importantly, they were the source of a dream: a future in which she could do anything. In her own words, Sotomayor tells young readers her life story, while also conveying a powerful message about the value of literacy and the never-ending possibility when you turn pages in books and in life.
Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton was far more than the wife of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton! From her work building schools and orphanages to raising funds for the Washington Monument, Eliza — who outlived her husband by fifty years — was a determined and resilient force for change in her time. This well-researched picture book biography is framed as a letter from Eliza to her as-yet-unborn great-granddaughter, and accented with exquisite illustrations that mirror 18th century American paintings, elegantly illuminating the life and influence of this extraordinary woman.
As a girl, Isabella was born enslaved. She was never taught to read or write, and she was separated from her mother, brothers, and sisters — and then, when she was older, from her children. But she knew she, like every person, deserved to be free. And her vision of her future led her to take a new name: Sojourner Truth. This luminous picture book biography captures Truth's strength and perseverance, as well as the towering spirit that allowed her to create a path for healing — one which we are still walking today.
As a young child, Helen Keller suffered an illness that left her blind and deaf — and in the 1800s, people thought that meant she could never achieve anything. But her parents refused to believe that, and hired a determined teacher named Anne Sullivan, who was able to connect with Helen and teach her how to communicate. And once Helen had a voice, she became an advocate for people with disabilities, highlighting just how much they could do if they were given a chance. This title from American Girl's A Girl Named series also includes a profile of a contemporary American girl who's following in Keller's footsteps.
Roberta Gibb loved to run, but when she applied for the 1966 Boston Marathon, she was told she couldn't enter — everyone knew a woman couldn't run that far. But Roberta had run that far, many times! So to prove her point, she covered her hair with a hoodie, threw on her brother's Bermuda shorts... and ran onto the course. To her delight, the male runners cheered her on — as she became the first woman to ever complete the Boston Marathon! This inspiring chapter book from the You Should Meet early reader series introduces a sports pioneer who changed the world for women runners.
A girl who grew up on the South Side of Chicago became a lawyer, a girl's rights advocate, and the first African American First Lady of the United States! In this Level 3 Step Into Reading book, kids will learn how Michelle Obama's parents' lessons about hard work and refusing to give up propelled her to Princeton, to Harvard Law School, and finally into the White House. Her parents also taught her the importance of serving a community and giving back to others in need — something else she embodied throughout her career. This book, perfect for newly independent readers, will fascinate kids with the realization that their hero was once a girl just like them.
Before Misty Copeland became the first African American female Principal Dancer for the American Ballet Dancer, she was a girl just stepping up to the barre! In this book from American Girl's A Girl Named... series, kids will read about the defining moments of her childhood and adolescence. They'll also get to check out a timeline and other interesting facts, plus a profile of a girl today who's following in Copeland's footsteps. This appealing series, with its full-color illustrations, is an excellent choice for emerging readers to learn more about their heroes, including titles about Rosa Parks, Hillary Clinton, and Helen Keller.
From an early age, Isabella Bird suffered unexplained sicknesses... except when she got to explore. By the age of 22, she realized that she couldn't stay in one spot any longer, and she left her home in Victorian England to see the world. She went to America and Canada... then Africa, Asia, Australia, and more. Everywhere she went, she described the things she saw, so that those who couldn't follow her explorations could still feel the wonder of the world. This exciting picture book biography of the first female member of the Royal Geographic Society celebrates a woman who embraced her own convention-defying, authentic life.
Wilma Mankiller grew up "dirt poor" in Oklahoma, but her Cherokee community practiced Gadugi, helping each other, so there was always support nearby. But when the federal government moved her family to California in 1956, they lost their sense of community. Mankiller eventually found the Indian Center in San Francisco, where she realized how important her tribe was — and that she wanted to fight for what they needed. Mankiller became an activist and a leader, overcoming resistance to female leadership and a life-threatening accident to become the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation. Inspiring and eye-opening, this book will introduce kids to a groundbreaking Native American woman who transformed her people.
People in the 18th century thought learning math could hurt a woman's health, so when Sophie Germain was a child, her parents even took away her candles at night so she couldn't see to study. However, she was determined to follow her dreams, and spent six years working to prove a math problem that male scholars had declared unsolvable. When she developed an equation that could predict patterns of vibrations — which laid the groundwork for much of modern architecture — she became the first woman to win a grand prize from France's Academy of Sciences. This exuberant picture book biography captures the triumphant life of a pioneering and under-recognized mathematician.
In the early 1900s, Lizzie Magie wanted to highlight the financial inequality she saw around her by having players take the roles of landlords and tenants in a game. But when people played "The Landlord's Game," all they wanted to do was pretend to be wealthy landowners! Years later a salesman named Charles Darrow changed her game's rules, called it Monopoly, and sold it to Parker Brothers — who only discovered later that the game was already patented by Magie. In the end, they paid a mere $500 to Magie for her patent, and never credited her as the creator. The true story of Monopoly's history was unknown for decades, but now kids can learn about it in this picture book history and contemplate the question "So who wins in this story?" for themselves.
Across history, women in every field have dreamed big dreams — and turned them into reality! In this illustrated collection of capsule biographies, author / illustrator Vashti Harrison introduces kids to creators like painter Mary Blair, actor/inventory Hedy Lamar, environmental activist Wangari Maathai, physicist Chien-Shiung Wu, and many more. Each of them approached their field with creativity and vision, changing it forever. This follow-up to the best-selling Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History is an aspirational collection of great women from history. Both volumes are now available in a Leaders and Dreamers: Bold and Visionary Women Around the World Gift Set.
In time for the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand introduces young readers to the bold and brave women of the American Suffrage Movement in this inspiring picture book! It took seventy years of passion, perseverance, and protest before women won the right to vote, and the ten women featured here poured their hearts and souls into the fight. With a mix of both well-known names like Susan B. Anthony, Alice Paul, and Sojourner Truth and lesser known women such as Jovita Idár and Mary Church Terrell, Gillibrand tells the stories of these courageous women of the past with vigor — and encourages young readers to raise their own voices to build our future.
I Am Malala, Malala Yousafzai's memoir about risking her life for the right to go to school, has now been abridged and adapted for chapter book readers. Raised by a father from a poor background who dared to defy tradition by ensuring his daughter was educated, and an illiterate but determined mother, Malala was taught to stand up for what she believed in. When the Taliban started restricting girls' access to education in Pakistan, Malala's determination to go to school set her on a path that would make her an inspiration to the world. For more resources about this inspiring education advocate, visit our Malala Yousafzai Collection.
This gorgeously illustrated collected biography honors inspirational women who helped fuel some of the greatest achievements in space exploration from the nineteenth century to today! Galaxy Girls pays tribute to fifty pioneering women past and present, from mathematicians to engineers to test pilots to astronauts. Each capsule biography is paired with a striking full-page original artwork from the students of the London College of Communication. Perfect for inspiring the space leaders of tomorrow, this stunning book gives this band of heroic sisters and their remarkable and often little known scientific achievements long overdue recognition.
In the early part of the 20th century, three fictional young women — Hazel in America, Marlene in the UK, and Lilya in Russia — dream of being able to fly but in order to win their place in the cockpit, they would have to fight sexism on the ground more fiercely than enemies in the sky! As the world slowly moves towards another great war, they go to pilot school (in some cases in secret) and prove their mettle, eventually flying for their countries during World War II. Author/illustrator Sally Deng crafts a powerful story about the experiences of trailblazing pilots around the world in this gorgeously illustrated book that celebrates the joy of flight and following your dreams.
Young Judy Blume loved finding the perfect books to read — and when she couldn't find one, she'd make the story up herself in her head! As an adult, she was a stay-at-home mother who became one of America's most beloved authors. However, her honest and frank looks at sensitive issues also resulted in her being one of the America's most challenged writers. In this volume from the popular Who Was...? biography series, young readers will learn about Blume's life and work, as well as the censorship she faced (and fought back against) as she wrote the modern classics that kids still love today.
Bookmobiles have brought libraries and literacy to thousands of rural residents — but did you know that the first Book Wagon was created by a woman? Mary Lemist Titcomb worked for the Washington County Free Library in Maryland, and knew that people who lived outside of town struggled to access the books she had to offer. So she started a horse-drawn Book Wagon that would go to them! The idea caught on, and by 1922 the idea of a mobile library was widespread. This biography recognizes the forward-thinking woman who knew that distance should be no obstacle to literacy.
Even as a girl, Selena Quintanilla was a singer. In her family's band Selena y Los Dinos, she performed at fairs, weddings, quinceañeras, and more throughout their native Texas. Because she learned to sing in Spanish, she was hugely popular in the Latino community, and became the best-selling Latin artist of the 1990s — and introduced Tejano music to many Americans. While her life was cut short after she was killed by a stalker, her influence on music and fashion still resonate today. In this volume of the popular Who Was...? biography series, readers will be eager to learn more about this groundbreaking entertainer.
For kids today, the idea that women couldn't vote, or didn't belong in many jobs, is foreign — but this history is critical for understanding how far we've come and the struggles that carry on to this day. In this engaging volume from the Who Was...? biography series, young readers will learn the story of the Women's Rights Movement, from its early days with leaders with Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton fighting for the vote to the work of 20th century groundbreakers to present day events like the historic 2017 Women's March. This compelling introduction to women's long fight for equality will inspire kids to continue to work for positive social change.
As a child, Aretha Franklin sang for her church; when she was a little older, she had some success as a gospel singer. But she wanted more — she wanted everyone to know her name. With her powerful voice, she won a record deal at the age of 18 — and went on to perform hit after hit, becoming one of the bestselling artists of all time! This book from the popular Who Was...? biography series shows why Aretha Franklin garners so much R-E-S-P-E-C-T and includes details of her many accolades, including her 18 Grammys and becoming the first female artist inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Teach kids about HerStory with this uplifting book that tells the story of 50 intrepid women, past and present, from around the world! Each spread tells stories of the woman's childhood, the obstacles they faced along the way, and the way they changed history. Rather than being divided by historical period, this book divides its subjects by the work they did, using the intriguing categories Believe and Lead, Imagine and Create, Help and Heal, Think and Solve, and Hope and Overcome. Vibrant illustrations and a diverse picture of the world make this the perfect introduction to women's history.
Meet 50 women who pushed the boundaries of human excellence in this inspiring book! From famous girls and women like Serena Williams, Elizabeth I, and Malala Yousafzai, to little known figures like Chien-Shiung Wu, Aud the Deep-Minded, and Ana Nzinga, these stories will fascinate kids (and adults) and encourage them to learn more about the women featured here — and the many other women of history! An epilogue urges girls who read the book to “take advantage of opportunities they are given and create opportunities that don’t yet exist” — just the right enticement to encourage a new generation of extraordinary girls.
As a child in a Mexican-American community, everyone expected that Sylvia Acevedo would grow up to marry and stay at home with her children — but Sylvia yearned for adventure. Then she joined the Brownies and her life was transformed. Through the Girl Scouts, she found peers who shared her love of science and role models that fostered her confidence and independence. Acevedo would become a rocket scientist for NASA — and today, she's the CEO of the Girl Scouts, helping other girls follow their dreams. This inspiring memoir is a celebration of resilience and a testament to the transformative impact of the Girl Scouts on many girls' lives.
Jane Austen wrote novels over two hundred years ago, but her characters and themes are familiar even today! It's no wonder that she remains one of the most beloved authors of English literature. In this book from the engaging For Kids non-fiction series, kids will learn about her life, her bold decision to write and publish her work, and the time in which she lived. Clever hands-on activities, from playing with puns to learning an English country dance to navigating with a sextant, will absorb young readers in Austen's world, providing a unique look at a woman from a time when most women lived behind-the-scenes lives.
Did you know that Hyenas are one of the only mammalian societies led by the females? Zoologist Kay Holecamp has spent her life studying these misunderstood and often hated animals, proving that they are intelligent, social, and playful — a far cry from the pop culture depiction. In this volume of the critically acclaimed Scientists in the Field series, complete with vibrant photographs, kids will learn more about these fascinating creatures and celebrate the groundbreaking work of a female scientist in a predominantly male field.
When Jo Ann Allen joined the Clinton 12 — twelve African-American students who integrated Clinton High School in Tennessee — things seemed easy at first... but as time went on, there was unrest, anger, and even violence. Clever and popular Jo Ann became the spokesperson for the group, always aware that she and her peers were fighting for a critical change to the nation's education system. In this novel in verse, she tells her story, reminding readers that court-ordered integration was a double-edged sword ("We’re in, yes./ But it’s more complicated than that") but conveys a message of hope in a future of true racial equality.
In the midst of World War II, over ten thousand American women were secretly recruited as codebreakers while men were fighting in Europe and the Pacific. These women decoded critical information that saved countless lives — and even helped bring the war to an end. However, because their work was classified, nobody, not even their own families, knew how much they had contributed to their country. Liza Mundy conducted interviews with surviving code girls and pored through recently declassified information in order to create the best-selling adult title Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II. This young readers edition brings this riveting story of courage, service, and scientific accomplishment to middle grade readers.
When Ibtihaj Muhammad was in school, she was the only African American Muslim student — and when she discovered a love of fencing, she stood out even more in a sport most popular with wealthy white people. Ibtihaj was fast and hardworking, but as she rose through the ranks, she faced constant scrutiny from those who insisted she was too different to succeed. Instead of listening to them, she persevered and became the first Muslim-American woman to medal at an Olympic Games. This young readers edition of Muhammad's memoir Proud: My Fight for an Unlikely American Dream will inspire kids with her determination, faith, and courage.
You don't have to be an adult to change the world — history is full of teenage girls who made their marks! In this visually compelling book, tweens and teens will learn about 30 women who accomplished great things before their 20th birthdays. From famous names like Joan of Arc, Sacagawea, and Mary Shelley to lesser-known figures like Sybil Ludington, Claudette Colvin, and Katie Stagliano, these stories are sure to inspire a new generation of fearless girls and women to find their own path.
1954's Brown vs. Board of Education was a critical ruling in the desegregation of US schools — but getting there was a long road. The name on the case came from the family of Linda Brown, a black third-grader refused entry to an all-white Topeka, Kansas, school, but there were many additional families involved, including children in South Carolina, Delaware, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Award-winning author Susan Goldman Rubin explores the complex history behind this key court decision, as well as the modern, not fully desegregated, school system. This compelling account will open young readers' eyes to the work — and sacrifice — behind the case that's often forgotten.
Before she was a lawyer, a judge, and the first Hispanic person appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court, Sonia Sotomayor was a girl in a Bronx housing project, struggling with juvenile diabetes, poverty, and family troubles. But when she found a big dream to pursue, nothing would stand in her way! In this middle-grade adaptation of her bestselling adult memoir, My Beloved World, Sotomayor tells her story in a relatable, appealing way, encouraging young readers to "dream big dreams" — and fight for what they know is right.
These girls made an impact on the world — and they did it before they turned 20! Rad Girls Can, the latest volume from the best-selling authors of Rad Women Worldwide and Rad American Women A-Z, introduces kids to girls past and present who made their mark. From famous names like Malala Yousafzai, Anne Frank, and Joan of Arc, to lesser-known figures like Syrian refugee and Olympic swimmer Yusra Mardini, anti-cyberbullying activist and app designer Trisha Prabhu, and more. As in the other books, each profile is compared with bold cut-paper artwork, and the book wraps up with a reminder that there's one more Rad Girl who can make a difference: you!
In the midst of World War II, the United States Army found itself in desperate need of personnel — and women, including African American women, stepped up to serve. Black community leaders, including civil rights activist Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, saw it as an opportunity to end segregation — but the "separate but equal" policy stood. This book centers on Major Charity Adams and her 6888th Central Postal Battalion, but uses her story as a jumping off point to talk about other women who helped integrate the armed forces. Rich with historical detail, and including an inspiring forward by Maj. Gen. Marcia M. Anderson, Army (Ret.). this book gives these little-known military pioneers a voice.
Women have been fighting for equality for centuries — and the fight goes on today. In this stunningly illustrated tribute to the rule breaking rebel women who fought for the right to vote, young readers will learn about the history of the women's movement around the world. From the moment New Zealand became the first nation that officially and explicitly granted women's suffrage, to the worldwide Women's Marches of January 2017, these women raised their voices and insisted on being heard.
Doaa Al-Zamel was only a teenager when the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, forcing her family to flee to Egypt. It soon became obvious that it wasn't safe for Syrians to live there, either, so Doaa and her fiance made a difficult decision: pay a smuggler to take them to Europe, where they might find both safety and opportunity. When the fishing vessel carrying them and five hundred other refugees was rammed and started to sink, though, Doaa had to fight for survival yet again. As she did in the adult readers' version of A Hope More Powerful Than The Sea, Melissa Fleming lets Doaa's compelling story speak for the millions of refugees facing the greatest humanitarian crisis of our time with determination and hope.
When women refuse to give up on their dreams, they become limitless! In this gorgeous volume, acclaimed artist Leah Tinari pays tribute to twenty-four extraordinary American women who changed our country's history and inspired her own artistic journey. From artists to athletes, teacher to politicians, activists to inventors, these women demonstrated courage, perseverance, and passion. Her powerful portraits, which include a few important facts about each women and span the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries, are sure to spark an interest in learning more about these limitless women.
When she was 14 years old, Lucy Maud Montgomery wrote in her journal, "I love books. I hope when I grow up to be able to have lots of them." Instead, she grew up to write them — including the beloved Anne of Green Gables series. However, she also struggled with anxiety and depression, a troubled married life, and more. In this biography for teens, Liz Rosenberg delves into Montgomery's unpublished personal journals to create a unique and moving portrait of this groundbreaking author and her writings which captivated the world.
From 4th century Alexandria to China's Qing Dynasty to the modern day, women have defied convention and made their mark in the world of mathematics! In this full-color volume, Dr. Talithia Williams shares the stories of groundbreaking mathematicians, physicists, and computer scientists whose love of numbers have driven profound discoveries and phenomenal technological advances. For teens who have ever wondered just how far math can take you, this book provides the answer, along with plenty of inspiration from historical figures — and the women who are making history today.
Over the course of the two decades of fighting in Vietnam, women played their own roles: as medics, journalists, resisters, and more. In this book from the Women of Action series, author Kathryn J. Atwood dives into the complex political history of the Vietnam War, and explores the lives of fourteen women whose lives were changed by this conflict. With suspenseful profiles and in-depth historical information, it's a detailed and engaging look at the often unexpected roles that women played, both during the Vietnam War and in the years afterward.
Women have always made history — but history hasn't always shared their stories. In this exciting title, Anita Sarkeesian, founder of Feminist Frequency, along with Ebony Adams, Ph.D., reclaim 25 stories of remarkable women through the ages. Political leaders, warriors, artists, scientists, and heroes, these women defied convention, lived authentically, and changed the world — and few people know their names. With its bold design, including full-color illustrations of each woman, this is a standout capsule history for teens or adults who want to fill in the gaps in the history they've been taught.
Myrtilla Miner and Her Fight to Establish a School for African American Girls in the Slaveholding South
Myrtilla Miner and Her Fight to Establish a School for African American Girls in the Slaveholding South
In the mid-1800s, Myrtilla Miner had what seemed like a ridiculous plan: she would open a school for African American girls, right in the heart of the slaveholding South. Even fellow abolitionists thought it was impossible, but on December 3, 1851, Miner opened the School for Colored Girls — the only school in Washington, DC. dedicated to training African American students to be teachers. Miner battled her own poor health to defend her school, facing stonings, arson, and a crowd of "rowdies" she discouraged with open displays of target practice with her revolver. This book from the Women of Action biography series highlights a little known abolitionist and educator who refused to give up on the right to education.
When Mackenzi Lee started a weekly Twitter series featuring women of the past, she started spreading the word about Bygone Badass Broads! In this collection, Lee tells the stories of 52 of these remarkable (and often forgotten) women, who dared to break convention and traditional gender roles. Lee's witty and conversational storytelling style makes this book a joy to read, while the bold and compelling illustrations entice readers to flip the page for just one more story, celebrating yet another woman of the past who paved the way for the women of today — and tomorrow.
Lillian Wald always knew she wanted to do more than marry a suitable man. As an adult, a visit to a tenement apartment on the Lower East Side opened her eyes to the needs of impoverished immigrants, and she took the daring step of moving into the community to care for them from within. Wald would found the Visiting Nurse Service and the Henry Street Settlement, and create the first city playground — and then she drew on her wealthy connections to accomplish even more. Young readers of this meticulously researched book about the little-known social reformer will be astounded at how many policies that we take for granted were the results of Ward's advocacy.
Girls and women fight for their goals every single day — so it's no wonder that women's history is full of radical women! In this inspiring volume, twelve young adult authors each tell the story of one young woman who fought society's expectations. They faced obstacles like immigration, racism, neurodivergence, and sexism, but the thing they had in common was a well of determination and courage that allowed them to keep fighting for their goals. This follow-up to A Tyranny of Petticoats is a unique look at how being true to yourself can be a radical choice.
In the midst of World War II, Josef Stalin made the Soviet Union the first country in the world that allowed female pilots to fly in combat. Three regiments of women, led by Marina Raskova, took to the skies, including the 588th Night Bomber Regiment, which would be nicknamed the "night witches." But facing the horrors of war and discrimination and pressure on the ground wasn't easy for these pilots, many of whom were still in their teens. Elizabeth Wein, the author of the best-selling historical fiction novel Code Name Verity, sets her sights on non-fiction in this compelling story about these daring pilots and the sisterhood they formed as they changed the world.
Both past and present, if you're a girl who dares to go against the world, you have to be a little brazen! Celebrated graphic novelist Pénélope Bagieu profiles the lives of 33 women from a variety of social, ethnic, cultural, and historical backgrounds, always with a sense of wit and humor that will draw readers into their stories and leave them eager to learn more. Sometimes infuriating but always inspiring, the stories of the obstacles these women overcame will inspire the next generation to become a little brazen themselves.
As a freshman at a prestigious New Hampshire boarding school, Chessy Prout was sexually assaulted as part of a ritualized game of conquest — and when she reported the assault and took her attacker to court, her school community turned on her. She was guaranteed anonymity if she chose, but instead she revealed her identity, challenging those who blame faceless victims to confront their prejudice, and demanding that institutions stop turning a blind eye to rape culture under their roof. This empowering story of survival turned into advocacy is a painful but critical read.