The Girl Who Rode a Shark: And Other Stories of Daring Women

Pajama Pr. Sept. 2019. 128p. glossary. Tr $22. ISBN 9781772780987.
Gr 3-7–The 52 women featured in this book are described as “adventurers the history books forgot about.” The subjects are grouped into six categories: artists, pioneers, scientists, activists, athletes, and adventure seekers. Some, such as Joan of Arc, Amelia Earhart, and Sacagawea, will be familiar to readers, while others are less widely known, such as Teuta, a pirate queen who challenged the Romans; Nalini Nadkarni, who trained as a dancer and later became a scientist studying rain forests; and opera singer Alexandra David-Néel, who explored the Tibetan city of Lhasa in the 1920s. The subjects are fascinating, and the women come from a variety of time periods, geographic regions, socioeconomic backgrounds, and ethnicities and include women with disabilities. Yet they all shared common characteristics: the need for adventure and a desire to learn. The book also contains portraits of the women, a glossary, and information about Indigenous peoples and the world’s ever-changing political boundaries.
VERDICT This colorful, delightful book is highly recommended for all history and women’s history collections.

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