Title: Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors, and Trailblazers Who Changed History
Author: Sam Maggs
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Ever heard of Allied spy Noor Inayat Khan, a Muslim woman whom the Nazis considered “highly dangerous”? Or German painter and entomologist Maria Sibylla Merian, who planned and embarked on the world’s first scientific expedition? How about Huang Daopo, the inventor who fled an abusive child marriage only to revolutionize textile production in China?
Women have always been able to change the world, even when they didn’t get the credit. In Wonder Women, author Sam Maggs introduces you to pioneering female scientists, engineers, mathematicians, adventurers, and inventors—each profile a study in passion, smarts, and stickto-itiveness, complete with portraits by Google doodler Sophia Foster-Dimino, an extensive bibliography, and a guide to present-day women-centric STEM organizations.
I loved this so much. Like, the kind of book I wish I had as a kid, and will be holding on to for any future daughters/nieces/other little girls I come across.
The book is split into 5 sections: Women of Science, Women of Medicine, Women of Espionage, Women of Innovation, and Women of Adventure. The stories are told in a way that they will be enjoyable to adult readers, but I think can also be understood and enjoyed by young girls as well. I also enjoyed the interviews of current women in each field at the end of each section.
I know that having something like this, where girls can see themselves in STEM fields, is important for our growing girls. I also love how this book was diverse. Not just white/American women, but women from all over the world, at all stages and social statuses. I truly think every girl will be able to find at least one woman that they relate to in this book. I also found the sections of espionage and adventure to be interesting choices, and I think sometimes they can be forgotten about, and so it was really great to see them get some attention as well.
Science, for so long has been dominated by (mostly white) men, and it can be hard for girls to find their place. I know firsthand how hard this can be, and I hope that the dialogue we are opening up around this will make it easier for girls to come. Mostly, I am just really thankful for this book and highly recommend it, especially for preteen and teen girls.
This also reminds me of another book I just read, Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World by Rachel Ignotofsky, and I highly recommend that one as well to anyone interested in this subject.