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
Join Jane Goodall as she learns about the lives of chimpanzees in this board book version of the New York Times bestselling I Am Jane Goodall! In simple rhyming text, Brad Meltzer adapts his book from the Ordinary People Change the World biography series for toddlers and preschoolers, encouraging them to observe the details in Goodall's wilderness environment. Informative sidebars provide fun facts about this dedicated scientist and conservationist, who proved that anyone can care about the world enough to make a difference! For another board book adaptation from this series, check out I Am Unstoppable: A Little Book About Amelia Earhart.
As a child in Italy, Maria Montessori grew up in a world where girls weren't expected to study like boys, but her mother supported her dreams and urged her to keep going to school. Maria became a doctor who specialized in early childhood, and she thought there were better ways to teach kids. Her revolutionary educational theories would become the Montessori Method, which has influenced thousands of schools around the world. This board book from the My First - Little People, BIG DREAMS series introduces babies and toddlers to the life of this innovative educator. For the picture book for ages 5 to 8, check out Maria Montessori (Little People, Big Dreams).
Introduce kids to a groundbreaking ballerina — and the qualities that make her such a great role model — in this book from the I Look Up To... board book series! This detailed board book explores Misty Copeland's story through her important traits. Each page spread includes vibrant artwork and a quote from Copeland herself that will inspire kids to follow in her footsteps. It's an empowering book to add to any preschooler's bookshelf! Other volumes in the series feature Oprah Winfrey, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Michelle Obama.
Introduce the littlest Mighty Girls to pioneering artist Frida Kahlo with this gorgeous gift set from the Little People, BIG DREAMS series! In the board book Frida: My First Frida Kahlo, they'll learn how an accident helped ignite Frida's career in art, as she poured her thoughts and feelings into her paintings. Then, they can play with the 7.25" plush Frida Kahlo doll! It's a lovely way to introduce kids to a trailblazing artist and feminist icon.
These eighteen women will encourage young readers to think big! Bestselling author/illustrator Vashti Harrison adapts her picture book Little Dreamers: Visionary Women Around the World into a board book suitable for toddlers and preschoolers. The creators in this book, from artists to inventors to scientists, include people like American modernist painter Mary Blair, Kenyan environmental activist Wangari Maathai, and Chinese astronomer Wang Zhenyi. With Harrison's accessible and appealing illustrations, they're sure to inspire kids to imagine their own bold futures. For another inspiring board book by Harrison, check out Dream Big, Little One.
After being invited to camp out on the White House front lawn during a special Girl Scouts trip, young Darlene is awed to see the place where First Lady Michelle Obama lives. But when her leader asks her to demonstrate knot-tying skills to the First Lady, Darlene is too nervous to say yes. Fortunately, with the help of her friend, Sam, and some encouraging words from Obama about her own childhood struggles with confidence, Darlene gets up the courage to meet her hero! This level one book from the I Can Read series uses easy but interesting vocabulary and simple sentences to teach young readers a little bit about Obama's work — and an empowering message about taking chances! For two more early reader biographies from this series, we recommend Lucy Maud Montgomery: Creator of Anne of Green Gables and Misty Copeland: Ballet Star.
It's hard for today's kids to imagine a world in which women had no vote and no voice — and that's thanks to the efforts of suffragists like Susan B. Anthony! In this Step 2 biography reader from the Step Into Reading series, kids will learn why Anthony was so determined to fight for women's rights, from her battle for equal pay to her infamous "illegal" vote. Issued for both Anthony's 200th birthday and the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, this book, with bold illustrations and fascinating facts about this trailblazing woman, will captivate young readers and remind them that, when it comes to justice, "failure is impossible"!
Learn all about the trailblazing author and disability advocate Helen Keller in this Level 2 I Can Read book for emerging readers! When Helen was a baby, an illness resulted in her going blind and deaf. Many people thought she would never be capable of anything, but her parents refused to give up, determined to find her a teacher. And when they did, Helen proved that she could do amazing things! This title, which is perfect for kids who can read basic text on their own but still need a little help, captures Keller's tremendous influence on behalf of people with disabilities everywhere.
When Jane Goodall arrived in Gombe, nobody had ever studied chimpanzees in the wild up close. In order to learn about them, she had to earn their trust — and when she did, she discovered amazing things, from the way they interacted in their group to their creation and use of tools. Her discoveries would change the way people looked at chimpanzees — and humans. This book from the I Can Read series, which is geared for newly independent readers who need simple text and sentences, includes a timeline and historical photos that are sure to inspire primate-loving kids!
This inspirational poem featuring 24 groundbreaking women reminds young readers that the phrase "like a girl" is an accolade, not an insult! On each page, a rhyming couple is paired with an image of one of these women at work, leading, creating, standing up for their rights... Vibrant artwork and compelling verse make this a powerful read-aloud, while mini biographies at the end of the book encourage kids to learn more about the people featured in its pages. It's a testament to international girl power that will leave kids cheering!
After 6-year-old Frida Kahlo survives a bout with polio, she disease leaves her changed: a withered leg that forces her to walk slowly and painfully, and that becomes the butt of the other children's jokes. The thoughtful girl wished that she could fly — and one day, her dreams whisked her off to meet an imaginary friend, a girl in white who could run, dance, and keep all of Frida's secrets safe. And years later, that same figure would appear in as a striking figure in her artwork. Inspired by Kahlo's diary, author / illustrator Anthony Browne tells the story about how flights of fancy supported Kahlo through childhood challenges and returned to provide inspiration for her art.
Janet Collins dreamed of being a ballerina, but in the 1930s and 40s, it seemed impossible: most dance schools wouldn't admit an African American student. But she sought out a school that would teach her, and her mother sewed costumes in exchange for tuition. Then, when she was accepted into the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo as a teen, they told her she had to paint her skin white for performances — something she refused to do. Collins would dance flamenco and other styles to fulfill her love of dance, and finally became the first African American prima ballerina in the Metropolitan opera. With gentle, rhythmic verse, Michelle Meadows tells the story of a determined trailblazer who refused to compromise who she was.
7-year-old Sophia had adored bugs ever since she was 2 1/2 — but when she got to school, not everyone appreciated her love of insects, especially in a girl. And when she brought a beautiful grasshopper — her favorite bug — to school, some of the kids even knocked it off her shoulder and killed it. Heartbroken, Sophia stopped talking about bugs... until her mom wrote to an entomological society looking for a bug scientist pen pal. The society created the hashtag #BugsR4Girls, and before long, hundreds of scientists were talking to Sophia, encouraging her to keep up her love of entomology. This charming picture book, written by the real-life Sophia, celebrates curiosity, scientific passion, being true to yourself — and of course, bugs!
In 1896, Louise Belinda wonders why her brother gets to ride a bicycle and she doesn't. When she asks why, Joe tells her that girls who ride bikes will develop "bicycle face," a horrible distorted face that lasts forever. Fortunately, Louise Belinda is skeptical, and when she finally gets on a bike, she discovers her bicycle face is really an enormous smile! And it's not long before her example inspires other girls and women to try out their own set of wheels. Set against the backdrop of the Women's Suffrage Movement, and with an afterword about the important connection between bicycles and the fight for women's rights, this picture book shows young readers the power of challenging the status quo and celebrates the freedom of riding a bike.
Today, Beyoncé is a world famous superstar, but as a child, she was quiet — so quiet that most people overlooked her completely. Fortunately, a special teacher discovered her gift: on stage, she was confident and dazzling, with a voice that astounded everyone. In this picture book biography, kids will learn about Beyoncé's rise (as well as the mistakes and obstacles she encountered along the way) and leave with an empowering message: find a way to follow your dreams, and you too can shine.
Astrid Lindgren had a marvelous childhood on an old farm in Sweden — but the moment that changed her life was the first time a friend read her a story. It was like giants, witches, fairies, and more sprung out of the pages! Astrid learned to read and devoured books... and when she ran out of stories to read, she decided to write her own. Lindgren would go on to become a best-selling author, the creator of many beloved characters including Pippi Longstocking. This charming picture book biography from the Little People, BIG DREAMS series is a celebration of imagination and storytelling. For another new release from this series, check out their volume on groundbreaking tennis player Evonne Goolagong.
As a girl, Emily Dickinson loved small things, like flower petals and rays of light — but she asked big questions. She also loved the written word, so when the adults in her life told her "to believe without knowing why," she turned to writing to help her explore what she could see and understand. In time, she retreated to her room, but her words helped her world keep feeling big — and left a treasure trove of astounding poetry that's still beloved today. This lyrical biography, which incorporates lines of Dickinson's own poetry and features stunning artwork by Becca Stadtlander, is a whimsical and wondrous look at one of the world's greatest poets. For another picture book biography of Dickinson, check out Emily Writes: Emily Dickinson and Her Poetic Beginnings for ages 5 to 9.
When Woodrow Wilson was inaugurated as President, Alice Paul was waiting — and knew he would meet his match! Paul was determined to win the battle for women's suffrage, and she battered Wilson with clever protests, articulate arguments, and a ferocious refusal to quit. In this thrilling picture book biography, author Barb Rosenstock captures the struggle between Paul and Wilson as a four-round boxing match — in which Paul's clever strategy defeats him at every turn! With colorful, period-inspired illustrations from Sarah Green, and extensive back matter providing additional detail about Paul's work and legacy, this compelling book highlights just how fierce the fight for the vote was.
When Nancy Grace Roman was a girl, she dreamed of studying the stars. No matter what challenges she faced, whether she was struggling with weak eyesight or being told studying science wasn't "ladylike," she persisted and became an astronomer... and that was just the beginning. As the chief of astronomy at NASA, she had an idea: a telescope in orbit which would finally allow her and other astronomers to look deeper into the reaches of space than anyone had ever imagined. This elegant picture book biography of the "Mother of Hubble," complete with extensive back matter, is a must-read book for kids who love the stars!
When Beatrix Potter was growing up, girls didn't go to school, work, or have money of their own. She spent her summers enjoying the English countryside, and wishing she could do something important. She ended up coming up with a charming little story, full of her own illustrations, called The Tale of Peter Rabbit — and it was a smash hit! She earned enough money from her books that she could do as she pleased... and when developers threatened her beloved countryside, she used it to buy farms and bequeath them to U.K.’s National Trust. This elegant picture book biography celebrates Potter's beloved children's books and her little-known work to protect the land she loved.
Years ago, two sisters named Venus and Serena Williams joined their father early in the morning on a litter-strewn tennis court to play. Before long, they've attracted their first onlookers: a group of local older boys who are impressed by the sisters' determination and drive. As time goes on, they attract more attention, and as they rise through the tennis world, they win even more fans. But as they devote themselves to their sport, they face many challenges: studying late at night, injuries, and the stares of people who have never seen black girls dominate tennis before. Still, wherever they go, they always know they can rely up each other. This touching dual biography celebrates both the Williams' historic influence on their sport and the powerful bond of sisterhood.
When Sylvia Townsend saw Swan Lake on TV, she was captivated. She borrowed books about dance from the bookmobile and taught herself — and picked the skills up so quickly that she started teaching other kids, too! When her fourth grade teacher offered to pay for lessons, Sylvia discovered another, unexpected obstacle: in the 1950s, dance studios won't teach an African American girl. But eventually, Sylvia found a teacher who did appreciate her talent — and she grew up to teach other children who are ready to fly! This inspiring picture book biography is a celebration of dance and determination — and a reminder of the value of libraries.
Getting a man on the moon didn't just take scientists: it took seamstresses! Eleanor “Ellie” Foraker loved to sew and took a job at ILC Dover, a clothing company best known for Playtex bras and baby wear. But when NASA announces a competition to create the spacesuit that will be used for the moon mission, Ellie is asked to lead a team to compete. Nobody believes they can do it, and the list of requirements for a space suit is long and complex: heat resistant, comfortable, light, and precise to within 1/64th of an inch. But Ellie's team proves their mettle, making a key contribution to the space race. This picture book is a reminder that all trades and skills need to work together to achieve greatness.
How Maria Toorpakai Wazir Pretended to Be a Boy, Defied the Taliban, and Became a World Famous Squash Player
How Maria Toorpakai Wazir Pretended to Be a Boy, Defied the Taliban, and Became a World Famous Squash Player
Maria Toorpakai Wazir loved sports — but in Pakistan, girls weren't supposed to be athletic or competitive. Despite being teased and even beaten, she joined a squash club and proved she was a talented athlete. As she grew more famous, though, the risks became greater, and when she received an award from the President of Pakistan, the Taliban threatened her life and the lives of those she cared about. To protect them, she quit the team — and practiced in her bedroom for three long years. This compelling biography from the People Who Shaped Our World series is a celebration of a determined athlete who refused to let anyone stand in her way.
Ruby's Hope: A Story of How the Famous “Migrant Mother” Photograph Became the Face of the Great Depression
Ruby's Hope: A Story of How the Famous “Migrant Mother” Photograph Became the Face of the Great Depression
Ruby loves her family's farm, but with Oklahoma devastated by a drought, her family doesn't have enough to eat, and they make the tough choice to travel in search of work. As they move from camp to camp, it's hard to sustain hope, even when other migrant workers share what they can to help everyone survive. But when photographer Dorothea Lange arrives and takes several pictures of Ruby's family, her "Migrant Mother" photograph will galvanize the nation to demand social supports for those in need. This powerful picture book highlights the poverty of the Depression and reminds young readers of the important protections for working people today.
When Abigail was born, girls were supposed to be meek and quiet — but she refused. She asked questions, and she married who she pleased: a country lawyer named John Adams. When the Revolutionary war broke out, she managed his farm and demanded that John and his fellow Founding Fathers "remember the ladies." And when it was time to represent their new country to the nobility of Europe, she didn't flinch from standing shoulder to shoulder with kings and queens! This bombastic tribute to a forward-thinking and independent-minded woman from early American history has plenty of verve — just like its subject.
Wu Chien Shiung's name meant "Courageous Hero," and her parents supported her in achieving her dreams: at a time when most girls in China didn't attend school, they encouraged her love of science. When she faced prejudice, they urged her to "Just put your head down and/ keep walking forward." Wu would end up traveling to the US, where her work on parity and beta decay helped drive physics forward — but because of prejudice against both her race and her sex, she was overlooked for both promotions and the Nobel Prize. This bittersweet but inspiring biography from the People Who Shaped Our World series introduces young readers to a little-known trailblazing women in physics.
Althea Gibson was an incredible athlete — she excelled at everything but sitting still! And she wanted to be the best tennis player... not just in Harlem, but in the world. But in the 1940s, segregation kept black athletes off of tennis courts in many places in the world. Althea was determined to break that barrier, and after years of determination, she became the first black person — man or woman — to win at Wimbledon. This dynamic biography captures Gibson's energy and forceful spirit that allowed her to keep striving for her goal, no matter how many obstacles were put in her way.
August, 1920: Tennessee's legislature is about to cast a history-making vote. If they approve the 19th Amendment, it will be ratified and women across the country will be assured of their right to vote. If they don't, the suffragists have more battles ahead. The decision came down to a single vote, and a shocking moment when Harry Burns — previously a staunch opponent of suffrage — voted in favor of suffrage. And he did so because of a letter from his indomitable mother, Febb Burns, who said "Vote for suffrage and don't forget to be a good boy." This inspiring picture book celebrates a defining moment of American history — and the determined woman whose letter helped give all women a voice in politics.
When Evelyn Cheesman grew up at the end of the 1800s, a proper English girl stayed neat and tidy; instead, she dug through grubby fields and forests, tracking down her beloved bugs. At a time when girls were expected to marry and raise children, she decided to pursue a career in science. She was hired to care for the insect house at the London Zoo and revitalized the exhibits, filling them with live specimens for visitors to admire! In the early 1920s, when women were expected to stay home, she went on multiple solo expeditions to distant islands, collecting over 70,000 specimens and discovering new species. This exuberant biography of a bug-loving pioneering scientist celebrates those who follow their passions and blaze their own trails.
When Flory Jagoda's ancestors were forced to leave Spain during the Spanish Inquisition, they fled with two precious possessions: the Ladino language of Sephardic Jews, and the key to the home they left behind. In their new home in Bosnia, the family lived for centuries, and Flory was born to a home full of music and joy. Then the horrors of World War II strike, and Flory flees to begin a new life in America. She may not have the key, but she has Ladino, her harmoniku, and her love of music to share with her new country. This powerful picture book biography of Ladino singer Flory Jagoda celebrates the importance of preserving connections to the past, even when you must travel to a new country.
In the 1930s, Mabel Fairbanks was a homeless orphan who dreamed of figure skating, even though black girls like her weren't allowed in public ice rinks. She saved her pennies for a pair of skates and a compassionate rink owner eventually let her in. Her talent was obvious — but she still wasn't allowed to compete. Instead, she performed in clubs and on TV, and later became a coach, eventually becoming the first African-American woman inducted into the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame. This introduction to a sports pioneer reminds kids just how big an obstacle prejudice was — Fairbanks never did get to skate at the Olympics — but also reminds them that each generation helps lift the next up.
When author Jules Verne wrote Around the World in 80 Days, New York reporter Nellie Bly thought, "I could do it in less!" Sponsored by her newspaper, The World, she set out on a ship across the Atlantic in 1889. What she didn't know was that, at the same time, another New York paper put one of their writers, Elizabeth Bisland, on a train going west — trying to beat Bly's time. As the race heated up and readers around the world followed their stories avidly, these two journalism pioneers knew they were making history. This thrilling picture book, part biography and part travel tale, will leave kids on the edge of their seats wondering who will win the race!
As a child in the 1940s, Patricia Bath became fascinated by caring for vision when she saw a beggar with cloudy eyes. Most people then thought a girl — particularly an African American girl — couldn't be a doctor, but she proved them wrong and became an ophthalmologist. Through her pioneering work in laser eye surgery, her work as cofounder of the American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness, and her innovative concept of community preventative eye care, Dr. Bath would save the sight of people around the world. This inspiring book from the People Who Shaped Our World series is a fitting tribute to this compassionate woman.
11-year-old Venetia Burney becomes fascinated by the planets after her school's "planet walk," where they place objects to represent the known planets. Then she learns something exciting: a new planet has been discovered, and they're still choosing a name! Venetia draws on her knowledge of Roman mythology and suggests the name Pluto for this planet that spends its time in the dark... and her grandfather loves the idea so much that he writes to the scientists who discover it. And they conclude that Pluto is the perfect name! This charming picture book reminds kids that the spark of curiosity can strike any time — and that anyone can make a contribution to science.
As a child, Aretha Franklin was shy — but she had a powerful voice! She started by singing at home, then in her church choir, and later moved to New York City to become a singer. It took years of work and performing before she made it big, but she held true to the values of equality and justice she learned at home, refusing to sing in segregated spaces and often performing to raise money for the Civil Rights Movement. This inspiring picture book biography captures all the key moments of Franklin's life, celebrating the talent and perseverance that drove her to become the Queen of Soul and the first woman ever to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. To introduce middle grade readers to Franklin's life, we recommend Who Is Aretha Franklin? for ages 8 to 12.
As a child, Ruth Asawa loved working with her hands on her parents' farm — and she loved observing all the tiny details around her. When she grew up, she went to Black Mountain College, following an experimental program where she studied with artists and thinkers of all sorts. And when she traveled to Mexico and saw people crafting wire into baskets, she knew she had found the perfect way to express herself. This elegant picture book biography provides a beautiful introduction to Asawa's life and exquisite sculpture, and even includes directions so kids can try folding their own paper dragonflies.
When Mamie Johnson was growing up, she had a passion for baseball that drove her to overcome every obstacle: when she couldn't find gear to practice with, she made a bat from a branch and a ball from stone wrapped with twine and tape. She had a strong right arm and a pitcher's eye — but she couldn't find a team. The All-American Girls Pro Baseball League didn't admit black women, and while Jackie Robinson had already broken the color barrier in the Brooklyn Dodgers, the men's teams wouldn't even consider a woman. Finally, she got her chance in 1953, and after signing with the Negro Leagues' Indianapolis Clowns, she became the first female pitcher to play on a men's professional team! This empowering biography celebrates how a passion for baseball drove Johnson to become a pioneer for women in sports.
Beverley Bass dreamed of being a pilot, but when she was a girl in the late 1950s, her parents told her girls just didn't do that. Still, they supported her by taking her to an airport to watch the planes. As a teenager, she got her pilot's license, and she fought through decades of prejudice before getting her big break with American Airlines, first as a flight engineer, then as a co-pilot, and finally as their first female captain. She was even one of the pilots forced to land in Gander, Newfoundland on September 11, 2001 — which brought her story to the world through the hit musical Come From Away! This vivacious biography, told by Bass herself, is a soaring tale of refusing to give up on your dreams.
Helen Frankenthaler's wealthy Manhattan family nurtured her creative gifts, but when she went to art school, she faced two big obstacles: art was supposed to be realistic, and artists were supposed to be men. But Frankenthaler had a vision: fields of glorious color, splashes and stains that held their own kind of beauty. She would develop a "soak stain" technique that watered oil paints down with turpentine, and her art would help create the "Color Field" style of abstract expressionist painting. This exuberant picture book biography of Frankenthaler is as vibrant and electrifying as the artist's work.
Imagine learning to read at the age of 116! When Mary Walker was born into slavery in 1848, she wasn't allowed to learn to read — and even once she was freed at the age of 15, there was too much work to do to learn... or so she thought. But she was healthy and strong, and at the age of 114, she had outlived all her other family. It was time, perhaps, to follow that long-held dream: "Could someone her age learn to read? She didn’t know, but by God, she was going to try." Walker was certified the nation's oldest student twice over, and at 116, she learned! This inspiring story proves that, with perseverance and dedication, there's nothing you can't achieve.
Frances Gabe hated to clean her house — it was exhausting, annoying, and more than anything else, boring! So she came up with an idea: she would build something that did the housework for her. One by one, she created almost 70 patented inventions — everything from a kitchen cabinet that washed, dried, and stored dishes to a sprinkler in the ceiling that sprayed soap — even though she only had a high school education. This quirky story with delightful retro-style illustrations reminds kid that sometimes, innovation and effort are worth it just for the joy they give you — and they're sure to inspire them to imagine their own inventions.
Jennifer Keelan was just an ordinary girl who happened to use a wheelchair. But she knew her life would be a lot easier if people would think about what people with disabilities needed — like cuts in a curb, lifts and elevators, and most importantly, acceptance from others. She joined adult activists in the disability rights movement, and on March 12, 1990, as Congress contemplated the Americans with Disabilities Act — a law that would make public spaces accessible — she got out of her wheelchair at the bottom of the steps to the Capitol Building and climbed — all the way to the top. This inspiring picture book reminds young readers that anyone, no matter their age, can make an impact.
From the time she was very young, Maria Mitchell loved looking at the stars. With the encouragement of her father — even though she found her schooling difficult — she studied astronomy, and devoted her nights to sweeping the sky with her telescope. And then, one day, she saw something new: a comet! "Miss Mitchell's Comet" won this trailblazing astronomer international fame that led to her becoming America's first female professional astronomer. Lyrical text and luminous illustrations celebrate a star-gazing scientist who helped set the stage for generations of women after her.
Ella Fitzgerald had a gorgeous voice that captivated jazz audiences — and one of her fans was an actress named Marilyn Monroe, who was fighting against sexism for better roles and more voice in her career. When Marilyn got a role with lots of singing, she listened to Ella's recordings to prepare. Her success helped her negotiate better pay and more creative control, and she wanted to thank Ella in person. And when she learned that Ella got turned away from the biggest club in town because she was black, Marilyn knew she could help Ella's voice be heard too. This powerful true story about these two close friends celebrates how far we can go when we lift one another up.
From the moment Alice Ramsey put her hands on the steering wheel of a car, she was hooked! But in 1909, few women drove cars — so the Maxwell-Briscoe Company asked Alice if she'd be part of an ad campaign: driving across the country to prove even a lady could drive their cars. She found several other adventurous women to join her, and over two months, they drove nearly 4,000 miles on a bumpy, thrilling, cross-country trip. Writer Sarah Glenn Marsh and illustrator Gilbert Ford capture a little-known part of women's (and automotive history) in this picture book tribute to daring women travelers.
Sarah E. Goode was born into slavery, and after the Emancipation Proclamation she moved to Chicago and opened a furniture store. But many of her customers didn't have much money or much space; they needed small furniture that was inexpensive to buy and served more than one purpose. Goode came up with an innovative idea: a bed that could fold up into a cupboard, leaving a desk exposed. But when she applied for a patent, she was turned down. She refused to give up, and after years of tweaking and reapplying, she became one of the first African-American women to receive a US patent. This inspiring story of a little-known inventor also includes a timeline of other African-American women patent holders.
Ellen Ochoa dreamed of playing her flute professionally — until she discovered engineering in college and was immediately hooked. People doubted whether she could succeed: a girl from an immigrant family wasn't the right sort of person to become a scientist, they thought. She refused to believe them, and not only did she achieve her career in science, but she even became a NASA astronaut. And when she flew into outer space, her flute came with her, so she could play a song for the stars! This appealing biography from the Amazing Scientists series is a colorful tribute to this daring scientist and musician.
In Cascade, Montana, in 1895, a stagecoach driver had a critical job: without the stagecoach, nothing could get through the mountains to St. Peter's Mission and the people there. But when Mary Fields, a tough and unflappable former slave — a woman in her 60s, no less — applied for the job, everyone thought the idea was ridiculous... until she proved she can hitch a team of six horses faster than any other applicant. For eight years, with nothing but her gun and her pet eagle to protect her, Fields would ride the dangerous path, never once losing a package or passenger. Author Tami Charles creates a vibrant portrait of this determined woman — and, in an author's note, explains what details about Fields weren't recorded, inviting kids to think about who and what gets included in the history we read.
“My name is Mother Jones, and I’m MAD" begins this fiery picture book about a groundbreaking American activist! Irish immigrant Mary "Mother" Jones may be in her sixties, but she's sick and tired of watching children being forced to work like adults, with long hours and dangerous conditions. Her protests would earn her the name "the most dangerous woman in America" — and in her most famous one, the Children's Crusade of 1903, she led 100 girls and boys on a march from Philadelphia to Long Island, stopping only when they reached President Theodore Roosevelt's doorstep! Told in the first person, and accented by illustrations that capture the indomitable Mother Jones, this powerful picture book will open kids' eyes to American labor history — and to the fight for rights of child laborers around the world today.
As a child, Laura Wheeler Waring loved mixing paints to get the perfect shade — especially if it was to capture the skin colors of people in her family. But she couldn't help but notice that museums didn't show paintings of people with brown skin. Defying prejudice, she studied art at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and then in Paris, where work by Matisse and Gaugin encouraged her to paint the people she knew. And when she returned home to America, her portraits of famous African American people would become classic works of art that still inspire visitors to the National Portrait Gallery. This beautiful picture book about a trailblazing artist celebrates self-expression, diversity, and welcoming different points of view.
Frances Perkins grew up at a time when girls weren't supposed to speak up, but her grandmother encouraged her to challenge herself: "when somebody opens a door to you, go forward." She discovered her passion in activism, and became a ferocious advocate for working people across America. And when the newly elected President Franklin Delano Roosevelt asked her to bring her wisdom to his cabinet — and hopefully pull the country out of the Great Depression — she answered that she would... if she could "do it her way." This empowering picture book biography of the first woman in a presidential cabinet — and the mastermind behind Roosevelt's New Deal — will encourage kids to imagine how their own voices could change the world.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg grew up knowing first-hand what it was like to experience discrimination — and she was determined to change that. As a lawyer, she fought for equality in court, and on the bench of the Supreme Court of the United States, she judges cases with a keen eye to both law and justice. In this early reader biography from the You Should Meet series, kids can learn more about Ginsburg's inspiring life — and extra information in the back will even teach them how they can become a lawyer themselves!
Even as a child, Ethel Payne loved hearing stories — and the best ones were the true ones. Her English teacher encouraged her writing, and her chance came when she got a job as a correspondent in Japan for a Chicago newspaper. An article she wrote about discrimination in the military made nationwide news, and soon she was breaking all kinds of gender and racial barriers for women in journalism. She wasn't afraid to ask the tough questions — even once she received a White House press pass — and it wasn't long before she was known as the "First Lady of the Black Press." This is an inspiring story of a woman who defied expectation and dedicated herself to truth and progress.
Anna Atkins loved collecting specimens from the natural world, including shells, leaves, and flowers. She grew up to become a botanist, and in a world without photography, that meant detailed illustrations of all of the plant life she studied. But when Atkins learned about cyanotype photography, she knew she had to experiment with this new way of capturing images of the world. Atkins' 1842 book Photographs of British Algea: Cyanotype Impressions is the first book of photographs ever published. This elegant picture book biography celebrates the blend of art and science that made this groundbreaking woman's work unique.
The stories of the changemakers in this book remind young readers that, contrary to stereotypes, Muslim girls and women are diverse, courageous, and bold! In this volume, kids will read about nineteen 20th century women, from famous names like Malala Yousafzai and Ilhan Omar, to lesser-known figures like squash player Maria Toorpakai Wazir and teacher Muzoon Almellehan. Each two-page spread introduces one person's story and emphasizes their influence on the world, and features vivid illustrations and an inspiring quote for each. This inspiring title is sure to encourage young readers to learn more about these daring women.
At a time when children's books were fairy tales or moral stories, Margaret Wise Brown was... unusual. One of her most famous stories was about a child's room at bedtime — and what child would want to read about that? But Brown always saw children as being with their own inner lives, and she continued to write the books she wanted to tell — over 100 of them in her short life! Fans of Margaret Wise Brown's classic books, like Goodnight Moon and The Runaway Bunny, will be eager to leap into this picture book biography of the groundbreaking author.
When Gloria Steinem was a girl, women weren't allowed to do things that men could do, like open their own bank account. And even things they could do, like go to college or get a job, were often discouraged. So she decided to change that. She studied at university, worked as a journalist instead of getting married, and founded Ms. magazine — and along the way she became a feminist icon. This detailed picture book provides a glimpse at the realities of life before the women's liberation movement, and celebrates Steinem's influential role in it.
Today Anne Frank is famous for her optimistic diary, written while she hid from the horrors of the Holocaust. We have that diary thanks to the efforts of another, often unsung woman, Miep Gies. Miep and her husband were integral in protection the Frank family as they lived in the Secret Annex, and when the Nazis arrested the fugitives, she knew that they would be back to pilfer their belongings as well. She couldn't bear the thought of Anne's precious diary being stolen or destroyed, so she hid it, hoping to return it to Anne or her family in time. Sadly, only Anne's father, Otto, survived the concentration camps, but when Miep gave him Anne's writing, it was the first step towards her words being read around the world. This powerful account celebrates everyday heroism and the power of the written word.
Emma Lilian Todd loved tinkering — even as a child, she took apart clocks and reassembled them to figure out how they worked. As an adult, she worked at the Patent Office, typing up patents for other inventors... and imagining how she would improve them. In the early 1900s, most people didn't think women could be inventors, but Lilian was determined to prove them wrong — by designing he very own airplane! This riveting picture book biography brings to life a nearly-forgotten engineer whose visionary thinking and determination helped her groundbreaking invention take flight.
When Zheng Yi Sao's village in Guangzhou, China was attacked by pirates in the late 1700s, the captain was captivated by her — but she refused to marry him unless she got a share of his business. Six years later, when he died, she took over his fleet, but realized that the best way to hold her power was by sharing it, winning the loyalty of other ships' captains by offering them their own shares. Before long, she commanded 1,800 ships and 70,000 sailors, rivaling the emperor's own navy. And even though she had a price on her head, when she was ready to retire, she convinced the governor-general of Canton to grant her freedom. Helaine Becker's exuberant picture book about Zheng Yi Sao's remarkable life includes an equally fascinating author's note about what it's like to tell the story of a person whose history is almost forgotten.
Young Teresa Carreño loved music, and the piano provided her comfort when she needed it — even when a revolution in her home of Venezuela forced her family to flee to America. She continued to play, and soon the Piano Girl became famous far and wide, bringing music and joy to people in the midst of the Civil War. Eventually, stories about the 10-year-old prodigy reached the White House, and one day, the young refugee played beautiful tunes for Abraham Lincoln and his family. Poetic language and colorful illustrations tell Carreño's story, celebrating the solace that music brings in difficult times.
Elizabeth Jennings lived in New York, a "free state" where slavery was outlawed — but that didn't mean she was equal. That truth became shockingly clear one day in 1854 when she was in a rush for church. She boarded a streetcar, only to be ordered off by the conductor because it was a "whites only" car. When she refused to leave, she was thrown off the streetcar. Jennings decided to take her case to court — complete with testimony from a white witness — and won the first legal victory for equal rights on public transportation. This compelling picture book about Jennings' famous case also features back matter about how Jennings' case set a precedent for future battles, including Rosa Parks' future transit protest.
As a child on the Canadian prairie, Joni Mitchell was expressive and artistic... even when she felt like she didn't fit in. When a teacher in junior high school encouraged her to write poetry, Joni "painted with words" and knew she wanted to share her music — and her feelings — with the world. This poetic picture book biography explores Mitchell's life through the emotions of some of her most famous songs, and celebrates her creative and independent spirit. Author/illustrator Selina Alko has created a moving portrait that's sure to inspire music lovers and dreamers, complete with an author's note and a full discography to help kids explore the music that Mitchell used to ignite a generation.
During World War II, everything had to be done with paper and pencil — but people hoped that an early computer called ENIAC might give America an edge during the war effort. Three women — Betty Snyder, Jean Jennings, and Kay McNulty — were assigned to figure out how to use the machine, with no instructions and almost no access to the computer itself. Through trial and error, they brought their talents to bear... and their work would bring the world one step closer to today's computer age. This vibrant illustrated history of three computer pioneers will inspire the next generation of programmers!
Gyo Fujikawa always felt like an outsider, even when she was growing up in California, and she dreamed of an America where people would see themselves represented on every page. Then, in World War II, while she worked in New York as an illustrator, her family was forced into an internment camp in Arkansas. It made her even more determined to create an inclusive world. Her book Babies was rejected by her publisher at first — a spread with black and white babies together is too controversial, they think, in an America where segregation still rules. But she persisted, and Babies would sell almost two million copies, paving the way for a vibrant, diverse world. Kyo Maclear and Julie Morstad have created an elegant book — part picture book biography, part celebration of racial diversity — that will inspire both kids and adults.
Today, girls across the country participate in every kind of sport — but it wasn't that long ago that girls were told that physical activity was "unladylike," inappropriate, or even dangerous. In this inspiring title, young readers will learn about the daring women — both athletes and politicians — who fought for women in sports to be taken seriously. Beginning with the first modern Olympic Games, author Debbie Gonzalez introduces readers to pioneering women like Althea Gibson, Donna de Varona, Gertrude Ederle, and more. Then, she introduces the historic Title IX legislation that mandated equal treatment and changed the rules of the game for female athletes. This sweeping overview of the evolution of women's sports is sure to fascinate young readers who can't imagine not being able to go out and play.
What does it take to change the world? It takes determination, drive... and curiosity! In this exciting anthology from author Martha Freeman and Google Doodler Katy Wu, kids will meet twenty different female scientists from past and present. Each capsule biography explores the backgrounds and life experiences of these diverse women, and highlights how their curiosity drove their work. From a cure for malaria to a map of the ocean floor, from better zoos to a better understanding of our DNA, this book shows how these women have changed the world — and inspires young readers to imagine how they can change it, too!
Kathrine Switzer loved to run: it felt like magic! But when she grew up, girls weren't supposed to sweat, or push themselves to run mile after mile: they were "too weak, too fragile." Switzer knew that wasn't true, and she continued to challenge her limits. The ultimate test was the Boston Marathon — but would a woman be allowed to register? Kathrine Switzer might not be admitted... but K. Switzer was. Wearing race number 261, Switzer became the first woman to officially run the marathon and changed the history of women's sport. This compelling picture book biography with energetic collage art that makes it feel like Switzer is really racing across the page will inspire kids with her love of running and her passion for equal treatment.
Meet an alphabet of women artists in this inspiring book of twenty-six capsule biographies! Within its pages, you'll meet painters, sculptors, photographers, and more. The letters don't refer women's names, but to short phrases that summarize her iconic work: "D is for Dots" for Yayoi Kusama, "S is for Spider" for Louise Bourgeois. An additional paragraph provides a few more details about each artist's life, work, and influence. With a diverse selection of women both past and present, this book, perfect for fans of Rad American Women A-Z, is sure to pique an interest in these creative women.
As a child, Selena imitated her music-loving family and sang using a hairbrush as a "microphone." When she was nine, she started singing in the family band. She was determined to be a star — but people told her that she couldn't succeed in male-dominated Tejano music. She ignored them, learned to speak (and sing) in Spanish, and created fun dance steps to accompany the music her older brother wrote. And before long, her band, Selena Y Los Dinos, were playing everywhere! This vibrant, heavily detailed picture book is a fitting tribute to this iconic musician, and celebrates her lingering cultural and musical influence. For another book about Selena, we recommend Who Was Selena? for ages 8 to 12.
When Beate Sirota Gordon was 5 years old, her family left Europe to avoid rising anti-Semitism — and ended up in Japan. Gordon grew up immersed in her new country, learning its language fluently. But that didn't mean she loved everything about its culture, particularly not the way it treated girls and women. During World War II, she went to college in California, and learned more about American battles for women's rights, and when she was selected for a job as a translator for the delegation helping draft Japan's post-war constitution — at the age of only 22 — she made the bold choice to ensure that women's suffrage and equality were enshrined within it. This vibrant, detailed picture book biography celebrates Gordon's story, nearly forgotten because so much of her work was classified, and how women can support one another in their fight for rights.
In 1778, the British have occupied the town of Setauket... but right under their noses, George Washington's spy ring known as the Culper Ring is collecting intelligence. And right in the middle of it is Anna Strong, a daring young woman who used handkerchiefs on a clothesline to send messages and took advantage of her anonymity as a woman to slip right through the redcoats' guard. In this book from the Spy on History series, kids will learn more about this neglected Revolutionary War hero — and, with the help of spycraft tools included in the book, will solve the mystery of Strong's last letter! This exciting telling is perfect for any budding spy. For another book about Strong, we recommend Anna Strong: A Spy During the American Revolution for ages 6 to 9.
If you saw the video of a girl using a prosthetic arm that shoots glitter, then you already know about Jordan Reeves! Now, with the help of her mother, Jen Lee Reeves, Jordan gets to tell the story of growing up with a congenital limb difference — and how our attitudes towards disability can either limit kids or set them free. Jordan's frank and funny stories about everything from learning to tie her shoes with a "little arm" to trying every sport she can will intrigue young readers, and her foundation Born Just Right will show them that you're never to young to make a change for the better!
Whether you're fascinated by dinosaurs, dig trilobites, or wonder about the history of human evolution, paleontologists are seeking the same answers you are! This book from the Gutsy Girls Go For Science series introduces readers to five female paleontologists: Mary Anning, Mignon Talbot, Tilly Edinger, Zofia Kielan-Jaworowska, and Mary Leakey. Then, kids can try hands-on STEM activities like modeling an excavation and preparing specimens to gain critical thinking skills and get an idea what it takes to succeed in this field. This full-color book packed with fascinating facts is sure to get kids curious about what lies underneath their feet! Other books from this empowering series are perfect for budding Programmers, Astronauts, and Engineers.
Today, Oprah Winfrey is wealthy and influential around the world — but as a child, she was just a girl on a pig farm who loved to tell stories. Her fellow students made fun of her, calling her "preacher" because she often spoke at churches around her home, but her family encouraged her to recognize her talents and her strengths. Today, she is a talk-show host, and actress, a producer, and a philanthropist — and the richest African American of the 20th century. This volume from the captivating Who Was...? biography series introduces middle grade readers to this influential woman's fascinating story.
Gwendolyn Brooks grew up on the South Side of Chicago, and she loved words: even as a child, she was constantly reading and writing. Her parents fostered her gifts, and as she grew older, Brooks developed her own voice: clever, thoughtful, and steeped in both the experience of black people in America's cities and the struggles of women in a world run by men. She would publish 20 books of poetry, two autobiographies, and a novel — and become the first black author to win the Pulitzer Prize. This elegantly written and complex picture book for older readers from the People Who Shaped Our World series is a stirring introduction to this distinguished poet.
It was one of the hottest summers on record in Stockholm, Sweden, when a 15-year-old named Greta Thunberg skipped school and sat down in front of the parliament building with a handmade sign. Her mission: draw attention to the need for action on environmental issues, particularly climate change. In this biography for middle grade readers, author Valentina Camerini explores lesser-known aspects of Greta's life — from her parents' supporting roles in her work to her Asperger's diagnosis and her advocacy for mental health — capturing her fierce determination as just part of a full portrait of this daring Mighty Girl activist. For more books about Greta, we recommend Greta and the Giants for ages 4 to 8, Our House Is On Fire: Greta Thunberg's Call to Save the Planet for ages 6 to 9, and We Are All Greta: Be Inspired to Save the World for ages 10 and up.
Biruté Mary Galdikas was only 25 years old when she traveled to the rainforests of Borneo to study orangutans in the wild. Like her colleagues, Jane Goodall and Dian Fossey, she faced skepticism about whether a woman could do the job — and her research prompted a fierce determination to protect these beautiful animals and their precious and ever-shrinking habitat. In this stunning book, award-winning author Anita Silvey introduces young readers to this little-known primatologist, and the remarkable primates that Galdikas has dedicated her life to understanding.
A a child in Stamps, Arkansas, Maya Angelou seemed ordinary — even though she faced brutal trauma that left her feeling like a caged bird. But Angelou's love of the written and spoken word helped her survive her emotional pain, triumphing over all the forces that could have ground the inspiration out of her. In this luminous picture book, lyrical text by Bethany Hegedus and metaphorical illustrations by Tonya Engel create a unique, vibrant portrait of one of the 20th century's most distinctive voices. This powerful picture book biography for tween readers, written for the 50th anniversary of the publication of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, is both comprehensive and emotionally moving.
The Incredible True Story of How One Woman Followed Her Dreams, Stayed True to Herself, and Saved 148 Lives
The Incredible True Story of How One Woman Followed Her Dreams, Stayed True to Herself, and Saved 148 Lives
Young readers will be thrilled at the story of pilot Tammie Jo Shults, the groundbreaking Navy pilot whose calm thinking and razor-sharp skills saved the lives of 148 people on Southwest Flight 1380 on April 17, 2018. Tammie Jo had to stay true to her dream of becoming a pilot as she faced obstacles and challenges along the way, but eventually she was one of the first women to fly the F/A-18 Hornet for the Navy. That same determination helped her keep her cool when a catastrophic engine failure threatened the lives of everyone on board her Southwest Airlines plane. This young readers adaptation of Shults' book Nerves of Steel will remind readers to have faith in themselves and to pursue their dreams.
American biologist Rachel Carson helped spark the modern environmental movement with her compelling writing about ecological damage — particularly her famous book Silent Spring. Now, budding ecologists can learn about Carson and her work in this biography from the For Kids series! Kids will read about Carson's life, then explore 21 hands-on activities, from collecting a seed bank to modeling bioaccumulation to building a worm farm. This inspiring book is sure to give kids new appreciation for the delicate balance of our planet's ecosystems.
Art is powerful: it's not only beautiful to look at, but it also gives artists the chance to express themselves and challenge the way we think! In this exquisite volume, Rachel Ignotofsky, the author/illustrator behind the best-selling book Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed The World, celebrates 50 groundbreaking women artists from the 11th century to the modern day. Capsule biographies explore key aspects of each artist's life and work, while the vibrant illustrations encourage readers to flip through the book's pages for even more stories. Timelines and infographics about art add the perfect finishing touch to this celebration of creativity!
In the 1920s, girls and women were told it was "unladylike" to play sports — but fortunately, some of them didn't listen! In this empowering look at sports history, award-winning author Sue Macy dives into the stories of early female athletes, who defied stereotype, broke barriers, and refused to let their lives be dictated by expectation. Macy fills her appealing book with sidebars, archival photos, and news stories, and highlights how social issues like racism also affected the growth of women's sports. A final epilogue introduces young readers to the groundbreaking Title IX legislation and how it led yet another leap forward. This intriguing look at a little-explored aspect of women's history is sure to fascinate young athletes and historians.
From the first days of American history, women have served in the United States military — but too often, their contributions were minimized or overlooked. As Revolutionary War and Civil War soldiers, they had to disguise themselves as men to fight, and even in the 20th century, they were often sidelined, even as they fought to break down barriers and prove they belonged alongside their male counterparts. In this beautifully illustrated book, author Winnifred Conkling introduces readers to courageous women past and present — from Harriet Tubman to Tammy Duckworth — who proudly joined the defense of their nation.
When Mae Jemison watched the Apollo moon landings, one of her questions was this: why weren't any of the astronauts women? After all, she loved science; couldn't she go to space too? Jemison would go on to become the first African American woman in space — and now her story can inspire the trailblazers of tomorrow! This book from the Work It, Girl series tells Jemison's life story, accented by brightly colored 3-D cut paper art, and provides ten tips from her own life for those who want to follow in her footsteps — and beyond. Other books in this exciting series feature Oprah Winfrey, J.K. Rowling, and Michelle Obama.
Women may not have always been given a seat at the tables of power — so they, in the words of Shirley Chisholm, brought a folding chair! This inspiring volume pays tribute to women past and present who demanded their right to a voice in the political process, from suffragists like Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Ida B. Wells-Barnett, to early politicians like Victoria Woodhull, Bella Abzug, and Jeannette Rankin, to today's trailblazers like Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, and Tammy Duckworth. Fifty capsule biographies of American women in politics give young readers a sense of the scope of women's impact on the country, from Frances Perkin's labor protections to Ruth Bader Ginsburg's key legal arguments and decisions. It's an exciting book that's sure to inspire a new generation of girls and women determined to change the world.
For astronomer Shadia Habbal, the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse was a rare opportunity to study on the sun's corona. But her research is dependent on the eclipse being visible — and she's traveled at great expense to view eclipses before, only to have weather and other factors interfere. In this gripping entry in the Scientists in the Field series, readers will follow Shadia as she assembles her team, sets up camp in Oregon, and watches and waits to find out if her efforts will pay off with the data she needs. It's a fascinating glimpse at the adventures (and work!) behind the scientific headlines. Other recent releases from this series include The Tornado Scientist and Saving the Tasmanian Devil.
Sharon Robinson's 13th birthday happened just before new Alabama governor George Wallace declared "segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever" on national television in 1963. But for Sharon, the privileged daughter of baseball star Jackie Robinson, she feels pulled between her parents' efforts on behalf of the Civil Rights Movement and her classmates' ignorance about the struggle. In her large house and wealthy life, she feels different from both her white and black peers — and she worries about her brother, who feels like he has to live up to his father's name. Over the course of a year, this memoir traces how Sharon finds her place and her voice as a child of Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream.
For the first time, Katherine Johnson, the now-famous mathematician featured in Hidden Figures, is telling her story in her own words! She begins her autobiography with her decision, at age 4, to begin attending school with her older brother so she could help him with his math assignments. Before long, the gifted girl leapfrogged through grades, eventually graduating college at age 18. Her years at NASA, including fascinating stories from her work on the Apollo 11 moon mission, are recounted in vivid detail. Warm and conversational in tone, Johnson doesn't shy away from the difficulties of being both female and black while growing up and during her time at NASA. For any young reader who has dreamed of sitting down to chat with this remarkable role model, this lively book is the next best thing — and it's sure to inspire them to reach for their own promising futures!
From the moment Jade Hameister set foot at Everest's Base Camp, the adventurous girl knew she wanted to explore the world — and she set her sights on becoming the youngest person every to complete the Polar Hat Trick, skiing to the North Pole, crossing Greenland, and then making it to the South Pole. In this compelling book, Jade talks about the highs and lows of her quest: everything from being having to share a tent with her dad to being named Australian Geographic Society's Young Adventurer of the Year. She also explores the changes she witnessed in the environment as she worked to complete her quest. Inspiring and authentic, this book is sure to encourage would-be adventurers to set their own goals for exploration.
Black women in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) have faced both racial and gender boundaries throughout history — and yet they have persevered, changing our world for the better! In this inspiring volume, award-winning author Tonya Bolden explores the stories of more than 50 black women, from pioneers for the past to the trailblazers of the 21st century. She explores how the intersection of race and gender affected their careers, and how their contributions benefit us today. Complete with extensive back matter, this empowering book encourages readers to let their curiosity drive them to success.
Today Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a feminist icon — but how did she get there? In this graphic biography, Debbie Levy, author of the best-selling picture book I Dissent, highlights how Ginsburg evolved over time, from her shy childhood to a passionate advocate and activist to a celebrated Supreme Court Justice. Expressive illustrations from Whitney Gardner capture both Ginsburg's life and the world around her that helped shape her beliefs. Compelling and empowering, this graphic novel is a detailed introduction to the life of the inspiring RBG! Ginsburg is also the subject of a volume from the popular Who Was...? series, Who Is Ruth Bader Ginsburg?.
Young aviation fans will love this young readers' edition of the best selling book Fly Girls! In the 1920s and '30s, airplane racing was one of the most popular sports in the country — but women weren't invited, and when they stepped up to say they wanted to fly, they were mocked and ridiculed. But five women — Florence Klingensmith, Ruth Elder, Amelia Earhart, Ruth Nichols, and Louise Thaden — dared to prove that women belonged in the sky. This thrilling story about how these very different women worked together to fight for the right to race against male pilots will delight middle grade readers.
For decades during the early space race, NASA knew the "right" sort of person to be an astronaut — and they were all men. Talented women were denied the chance to try, even when they proved they were just as qualified. Then Valentina Tereshkova of the USSR became the first woman in space, and suddenly, NASA wanted to catch up. Group 9, NASA's first mixed gender class, still had to fight stereotypes, but they proved that women also deserved to fly. The author / illustrator pair behind Primates: The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas tells this captivating story in the voice of former astronaut Mary Cleave, creating an inspiring graphic novel that reminds readers that progress is fastest when we include everyone.
In the early years of aviation, people scoffed at women who wanted to fly — such a pursuit was too uncouth, too difficult, and too dangerous for them. A group of daring women were determined to prove them wrong! In 1929, pioneering women aviators like Amelia Earhart, Louise Thaden, Marvel Crosson, and Elinor Smith banded together for an Air Derby, a race across the U.S. for women flyers. In this taut and suspenseful narrative telling, National Book Award finalist Steve Sheinkin follows these women as they fight the perils of their sport, discrimination from media and the general public, and more to prove that women belong in the air.
Georgia O'Keeffe knew she wanted to do more than paint pretty pictures: she wanted to be an artist. Sometimes, though, it seemed like there were obstacles at every turn: first an illness forced her to temporarily leave her studies in Chicago's Art Institute, and when she tried again, in New York at the Art Students League, she had to leave again when her family fell on hard times. So she found her own way to a career in art — and her unique viewpoint helped her change American art history. This revealing biographical novel about the mother of American modernism will fascinate fans of O'Keeffe's work.
Virginia Hall always wanted adventure, but many people thought that she would spend her life behind a desk after she lost her leg in an accident. Instead, when World War II broke out, she wanted to serve: first as part of a French ambulance unit, then as an undercover agent for the British Special Operations Executive. She was such an effective spy that the Gestapo declared "the Limping Lady" to be among the most dangerous spies they pursued. This is the true story of a woman who refused to let anything — or anyone — hold her back.
Girls mean business — they can run the world! In this empowering volume, kids will learn all about 31 women in charge of leading companies, from Pop Sugar to Mitú to 23andme and many more. Each provide includes information about how she came up with her business idea, the obstacles she ran into along the way, and her tips for success (plus a few fun facts like favorite candy or favorite children's book!) At the end, kids will learn how to turn their own idea into a business: how to create a business plan and elevator pitch, how to manage finances, and much more. This inspiring book is the perfect choice for young would-be entrepreneurs to help them imagine turning their dream into reality.
In 1964, Maureen Wilton's brother brought home a running race ribbon — and the 10-year-old girl decided she wanted one too. But people believed running was dangerous for women's health. Maureen was determined to prove them wrong, in 1967, the 13-year-old broke the women's world marathon record. She was dubbed "Mighty Moe" by the press, but her win kicked off a storm of public disapproval that made her quit running. However, her example proved that girls could run — and Mighty Moe herself finally found her way back to the sport decades later. This inspiring story of a running pioneer includes a foreword by Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to officially register for the Boston Marathon.
From an early age, Gloria Steinem observed the consequences of discrimination against women. The perceptive girl saw that society set up obstacle after obstacle towards women, and became determined to knock them all down. In this detailed biography, Winifred Conkling, author of Votes for Women! American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot, explores the life of this pioneering woman, from Steinem's career in journalism to the founding of Ms. magazine to her activism through to the present day. It's an eye opening look at a dedicated feminist that will inspire the next generation of activists to challenge the status quo.
In the middle of World War II, baseball was in big trouble: with so many American men fighting on fronts far from home, there was no one to fill the baseball teams. Or rather, there were no men... In the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, hundreds of dedicated women athletes finally got their chance to shine! In this gorgeously illustrated history of the AAGPBL, author Anika Orrock shares stories from the first women to play professional baseball in their own words, from the day they stepped up to the plate to the moment the league closed. Exuberant and inspiring, this charming look at a key moment in women's sports history will delight young baseball fans.
In this unique look at Ruth Bader Ginsburg, author Victoria Ortiz interweaves Ginsburg's life story, influences, and landmark court cases together to create a multifaceted portrait of an American icon! Each of the ten chapters highlights one court case alongside one aspect of Ginsburg's life, from her childhood to the influence of her faith on her work to her judicial career. Readers also get a better picture of how America's legal system works, and how cases reach the Supreme Court. This engaging biography, complete with black and white archival photographs, is perfect to encourage a new generation to question, argue, and dissent!
Elizabeth Peratrovich was proud of her Tlingit heritage, but not everyone in Alaska felt the same way. She was infuriated that stores felt free to post signs reading, "No Natives or Dogs Allowed," and she was determined to fight for change. Peratrovich would spend years working for equality before a powerful 1945 speech about her experiences as a second-class citizen changed minds in the Alaska Territorial Legislative Session and led to the passing of the Alaska Anti-Discrimination Act — America's first civil rights legislation. Author Annie Boochever's detailed research, including interviews with Peratrovich's eldest son, comes together in this empowering look at the life of a little-known fighter for justice.
Since the founding of the United States, women have wanted to serve in the United States Army — and they were willing to break gender and racial barriers, and face skepticism and prejudice, to do so! In this book from the popular Women of Action series, teens will learn about bold women who took their place in the ranks during the Revolutionary War, World Wars I and II, and in the modern Army of today. It's sure to inspire girls who dream of their own time serving the country they love!
As a teen, Sophie Scholl grew disillusioned by the propaganda of Nazi Germany and decided she could no longer be silently complicit in supporting a tyrannical regime. Sophie and her brother formed a non-violent resistance group called the White Rose and began distributing anonymous leaflets calling on their fellow Germans to oppose the Nazis. Betrayed to the Gestapo, Sophie and her brother were arrested for treason, interrogated, and executed mere hours after a show trial. Today, they are honored among Germany's greatest heroes for their moral courage. This powerful novel-in-verse honors Sophie's courage and others like her who gave their lives in the fight against fascism.
Maggie grew up in a home that required hours of drudgery to maintain, with a mother who was constantly pregnant despite her chronic cough. She dreamed of being a doctor, not a teacher or a mother — and she couldn't help but think that families like hers would struggle less if they could control when and whether they had more children. This passionate novel explores the early life of Margaret Sanger, who would go on to fight for women's rights and found Planned Parenthood. Author J. Albert Mann captures Sanger's determination and drive, both in her text and in the detailed afterword that tackles some of the most persistent myths about this pioneer of family planning.
Air National Guard Major Mary Jennings Hegar has been awarded a Purple Heart and a Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor Device for her work in Afghanistan... but her fight as the pilot for a Medevac mission was only one of many battles she had to win during her life. In this young reader's edition of her adult memoir Shoot Like A Girl: One Woman's Dramatic Fight in Afghanistan and On the Home Front, Hegar explores how her difficult childhood pushed her to achieve, and the obstacles she faced as a woman in America's military — including a fight for women to be allowed to serve openly on the front lines. Full of exclusive photographs, and including a Q&A specifically for teen readers, this book is a reminder of the power of determined women.
Today, Joan of Arc is a semi-mythical figure — one that still fascinates people around the world. In this stunning novel in verse, author David Elliott explores her final hours — through her own eyes, through the eyes of both her accusers and defenders, and through the perspectives of objects in her life, from the sword she wielded to the fire that took her life. Clever use of concrete poetry and medieval poetic forms draw readers into this novel, inviting them to consider attitudes towards youth, gender, and defiance of the status quo, both in the past and the present. With a map, an author's note, and a list of poetic forms included, this evocative book sheds new light on Joan's story. Joan of Arc is also the subject of another novel in verse, The Language of Fire: Joan of Arc Reimagined.