by Rebel Girls
I have reviewed a number of titles in the Rebel Girls series. I think that these books are a wonderful way for kids to be reminded that they can do amazing things. The life stories that are featured are always well told and have engaging illustrations.
Now, the publisher has made a box set of five of their chapter books for early readers. The books that are to be found are:
- Ada Lovelace Cracks the Code
- Madam C. J. Walker Builds a Business
- Dr. Wangari Maathai Plants a Forest
- Junko Tabei Masters the Mountains
- Alicia Alonso Takes the Stage
Each of these stories is engaging. Below is a review that I wrote for the Ada Lovelace title. It gives a sense of what makes the series so good.
This well-researched and written book tells the story of Ada Lovelace. Ada was the daughter of the famous poet, Lord Byron, although she did not know her father well. Ada’s mother was a woman of strong opinions who had definite ideas of what she wanted for Ada.
Ada was educated by governesses in her early years. She often found her lessons boring until Miss Stamp was hired. Miss Stamp allowed Ada’s imagination to soar, despite Ada’s mother’s not wanting this. Miss Stamp and Ada read stories and did experiments, including trying to fly.
Soon after Miss Stamp was let go, Ada became quite ill and took years to recover. She then moved along the path of expectations, attending balls and eventually marrying. However, she also observed and exercised her mathematical skills. Influential thinkers with whom she spent time included Mary Somerville and George Babbage, the designer of an important precursor to the computer.
I have read several books about Ada Lovelace. This is one of the best, especially for its target audience of elementary school aged children. They will relate to Ada’s spirit and curiosity. Hopefully, readers will be encouraged to pursue their own studies and interests, even if not everyone agrees with their pursuits.
The end of the book includes a number of suggested activities and and afterword.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this excellent, well-illustrated story of Ada Lovelace in return for an honest review.
AND HERE IS MY REVIEW FOR THE BOOK ON C J WALKER
This book is targeted to a young elementary school aged audience. It is divided into short chapters and has beautiful, vibrant illustrations. Madam C J Walker Builds a Business tells the story of Sarah Breedlove from when she was the first in her family born in freedom, not slavery, through her remarkable business success and accomplishments. Sarah faced many obstacles including the closing of her segregated school, the deaths of her parents, her difficult time living with a sister and her sister’s demanding husband, her early marriage, becoming a parent and her husband’s violent death. The book shows how Sarah went from this background that included the most menial jobs to becoming Mrs. Walker and a woman who was incredibly successful in building her business centered on caring for African American women’s hair.
This is a detailed, readable biography. There are additional sections at the end of the book to encourage further learning. This book should be in classrooms and is highly recommended.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this book in exchange for an honest review.
The other stories are equally engaging. This book deserves a place in both home and school libraries.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.