She Persisted Around The World: 13 Women Who Changed History (Chelsea Clinton)

Hello, friends! Our book today is She Persisted Around The World: 13 Women Who Changed History, written by Chelsea Clinton and illustrated by Alexandra Boiger, a brief and inspiring look at some international female role models.

Second in the pair’s series, Around The World expands on the theme of inspiring female leaders and trailblazers, this time reaching beyond the United States to spotlight figures both familiar and lesser-known. Young readers are introduced to ladies like suffragist Kate Sheppard, whose efforts drove New Zealand to establish equal voting rights, or Leymah Gbowee, who united Muslim and Christian women in peaceful protests to end civil war in Liberia. Scientists such as Madame Curie and Caroline Herschel, activists such as Malala Yousafzai and Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and trailblazers like Aisha Rateb and Mary Verghese – there is no shortage of women to inspire little ones (especially girls), to stand up, be heard, and persist.

Lovely. Continuing the tone that the pair established in the previous book, each woman’s story is distilled down, condensed in a way that allows readers to get a brief sense of each woman’s aims, obstacles, and accomplishments before moving onto the next. The choice of the women included is nicely varied, representing different cultures, backgrounds, and abilities, and each one is illustrated in a loving, dreamy style that casts her as the fierce, intelligent, and ultimately triumphant heroine of her story. I do wish that a little more context had been provided, such as backmatter or even the time period in which each woman lived, but the overall message is clear and timeless: girls can accomplish great things, even while fighting harder to be heard. The length is fine for slightly older bookworms, and JJ loved it. Baby Bookworm approved!

She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed The World (Chelsea Clinton)

Hello, friends! Today, we read She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed The World, written by Chelsea Clinton and illustrated by Alexandra Boiger, a collection of mini-biographies of notable female pioneers in everything from ballet to civil rights to space exploration.

The introduction lays it out plainly: being a girl in this world can be harsh. All too often, people tell you to be quiet, to keep your head down, to aim smaller. Girls are often made to feel unimportant or unintelligent or incapable because of their gender. But when the world’s got you feeling that way, there are incredible American women to look up to. There’s Sally Ride, the first woman in space, who dedicated her life to giving girls opportunities in science and engineering. There’s Harriet Tubman, a brave abolitionist who freed dozens of slaves in the Underground Railroad. There’s Claudette Colvin, a teenage civil rights activist who was one of the first to protest bus segregation, later inspiring Rosa Parks to do the same. Thirteen brave, smart, determined, strong women who changed the world and left great legacies of inspiration for future girls… all because they persisted.

I MEAN. How could this one not be a hit with us? A book that celebrates feminist icons for their work? That encourages young girls to find role models in women who refused to give up on their dreams or aspirations in the face of adversity? We loved every page. The biographies are great, short enough to keep the attention of little bookworms but detailed enough that the reader gets a real feel for the struggles and triumphs of each woman; it keeps the length manageable for even younger readers like JJ. The art is fantastic, creating a meaningful tableau (sometimes abstract, sometimes realistic) that shows the impact of each subject’s work. This one is a must for every little girl’s library, and we adored it. Baby Bookworm approved!