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Celebrating Women's History Month

We've selected books highlighting women's history and voices that would be perfect to add to your shelves! We've even included fiction titles packed with powerful female protagonists that will prompt your young readers to strive to make history themselves.

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      The Girl Who Sailed the Stars

      by Matilda Woods

      Oct 2019

      Intermediate Readers

      When Oona Britt was born in the magical town of Nordlor, where all of the homes are built from wrecked ships, her parents never expected her to be a girl. Having listened to a faulty prediction from a washed-up soothsayer, they were promised a “bold and brave son,” so as the youngest of seven sisters, Oona’s birth became a disappointment—especially to her sea captain father, who doesn’t believe there’s a place for girls aboard ships.
      But Oona is different from the rest of her family. She longs for adventure and knowledge. So she steals aboard her father’s ship just as he’s about to set sail for his annual winter whale hunt, and suddenly finds herself in the midst of a grand adventure! The ship has its own sea cat, Barnacles, and a navigator named Haroyld, who show Oona how to follow the stars. But for all that, Oona’s father is furious. Can she prove to him that she’s worth his love and pride, even though she’s not the bold and brave son he was promised?
      This follow-up to The Boy, the Bird & the Coffin Maker carries just as much heart and charm as Matilda Woods’s first novel. The characters, story, and illustrations will dazzle readers.

      One-color text and illustrations.

      Rise!: From Caged Bird to Poet of the People, Maya Angelou

      by Bethany Hegedus

      Sep 2019

      Biography Elementary Plus

      In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, this beautiful biography of Maya Angelou describes how she rose above a childhood of trauma and emotional pain to become one of the most inspiring voices of our lifetime.

      Writer, activist, trolley car conductor, dancer, mother, and humanitarian - Maya Angelou's life was marked by transformation and perseverence.  In this comprehensive picture-book biography geared towards older readers, Bethan Hegedus lyrically trances Maya's life from her early days in Stamps, Arkansas through her work as a freedom fighter to her triumphant rise as a poet of the people.

      Foreword by Colin Johnson. Time line with photographs. Author’s note with resources. Selected bibliography. Quotation sources. Full-color illustrations were rendered in acrylic and oil paint.

      Grass

      by Keum Suk Gendry-Kim

      Sep 2019

      Graphic Novels High Plus

      Grassis a powerful antiwar graphic novel, telling the life story of a Korean girl named Okseon Lee who was forced into sexual slavery for the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second World War—a disputed capter in twentieth-century Asian history.

      Beginning in Lee's childhood, Grass shows the lead-up to the war from a child's vulnerable perspective, detailing how one experienced the Japanese occupation and the widespread suffering it entailed for ordinary Koreans.  Keum Suk Gendry-Kim emphasizes Lee's strength in overcoming the many forms of adversity she experienced.  Grass is painted in a black ink that flows with lavish details of the beautiful fields and farmland of Korea and uses heavy brushwork on the somber interiors of Lee's memories.

      The cartoonist Gendry-Kim's interviews with Lee become an integral part of Grass, forming the heart and architechture of this powerful nonfiction graphic novel and offering a holistic view of how Lee's wartime suffering changed her.  Grass is a landmark graphic novel that makes personal the desparate cost of war and the importance of peace.

      Afterword. Black-and-white illustrations.

      Survivor Girl

      by Erin Teagan

      Sep 2019

      High Interest Middle Plus

      12-year-old Ali adores her reality-show celebrity father, Survivor Guy, and hopes to follow in his footsteps. But when he invites her on location, Ali is sure she won’t survive one episode . . . until she learns the truth: The show isn't just her dad and a camera. It’s a huge crew and set, with stunt doubles! When a wildfire strikes and Ali and two other kids miss the last rescue helicopter, suddenly, the fight for survival is real. Will she find the self-confidence she needs so they can work together and get out of the wilderness alive?

      STEM themes and plot strands about body image and divorce are subtly woven into this page-turning tale.

      My Corner of the Ring

      by Jesselyn Silva

      Sep 2019

      Sports Middle Plus

      In this Lean-In style inspirational memoir, twelve-year-old Jesselyn Silva offers a ringside seat to girl power and what it takes to win in the ring and in life: punch by punch. Girl Boxer shows kids what it means to be true to yourself and stick with your dreams even when facing adversity and ridicule. Supported by her single dad, Jesselyn (JessZilla in the ring) first donned her boxing gloves at five years of age, making her one of very few female boxers in the country. Girl Boxer charts Jesselyn’s oft times exhilarating and heartbreaking journey to success in a male dominated sport where she struggles to find partners to spar with and combats the viewpoint that no one wants to see a girl fight. Despite an inhospitable environment, Jesselyn still has her sights set on the Olympics. With the help of her very dad, Pedro, who has instilled in her a strong work ethic, she just might make it.It is an exciting and motivational read that will provide kids with the roadmap and encouragement to accomplish whatever goals they set for themselves. Jesselyn’s positive can-do attitude and determination make this a must read.

      Glossary. Black-and-white photographs and illustrations.

      Alex Morgan: Epic Athletes

      by Dan Wetzel

      Sep 2019

      Sports Elementary Plus

      Fierce competitor. World Cup winner. Role model.

      U.S. Women's Soccer star Alex Morgan has earned each of these impressive titles throughout her incredible career. As a young girl growing up in Southern California, she dreamed of being a professional soccer player, fighting to compete on the international stage against the world's greatest athletes. Flash forward to the present and Alex Morgan has emerged as the face of U.S. Women's soccer, famous for her clutch, late-game goals and an inspiration to kids across the country.

      Just in time for the 2019 Women's World Cup, bestselling author Dan Wetzel details the rise of an American champion in this uplifting biography for young readers, complete with dynamic comic-style illustrations.

      Black-and-white illustrations.

      For Black Girls Like Me

      by Mariama J. Lockington

      Sep 2019

      Advanced Readers Plus

      Makeda June Kirkland is eleven-years-old, adopted, and black. Her parents and big sister are white, and even though she loves her family very much, Makeda often feels left out. When Makeda's family moves from Maryland to New Mexico, she leaves behind her best friend, Lena—the only other adopted black girl she knows—for a new life. In New Mexico, everything is different. At home, Makeda’s sister is too cool to hang out with her anymore and at school, she can’t seem to find one true friend.

      Through it all, Makeda can’t help wondering: What would it feel like to grow up with a family that looks like me?

      Through singing, dreaming, and writing secret messages back and forth with Lena, Makeda might just carve a small place for herself in the world.

      Disappearing Earth

      by Julia Phillips

      Aug 2019

      Adult Crossover High Plus

      One August afternoon, on the shoreline of the Kamchatka Peninsula at the northeastern tip of Russia, two girls—sisters, ages eight and eleven—go missing. The police investigation goes cold from the outset. In the girls’ tightly-woven community, everyone must grapple with the loss. But the fear and danger is felt most profoundly among the women of this isolated place. Taking us one chapter per month across a year on Kamchatka, this powerful novel connects the lives of characters changed by the sisters’ abduction: a witness, a neighbor, a detective, a mother. Theirs is an ethnically diverse population in which racial tensions simmer, and so-called natives are often the first to be accused. As the story radiates from the peninsula’s capital city to its rural north, we are brought to places of astonishing beauty: densely wooded forests, open expanses of tundra, soaring volcanoes, and glassy seas.

      Polar Explorer: Polar Adventurer

      by Jade Hameister

      Aug 2019

      Sports High

      From her first trip to Everest Base Camp as a young woman, Jade Hameister knew what she wanted to achieve —the impossible. Jade battled atrocious weather, unbelievably low temperatures, and a sled that weighed almost twice as much as her to become the youngest person ever to complete the Polar Hat Trick. Jade began her quest to complete the Polar Hat Trick in April 2016 when she was fourteen. She became the youngest person to ski to the North Pole from anywhere outside the last degree—the point where most people begin—and was named Australian Geographic Society’s Young Adventurer of the Year. But that was just the beginning.

      Author’s note. Black-and-white photographs and full-color photo inserts.

      The Girl Who Named Pluto: The Story of Venetia Burney

      by Alice B. McGinty

      Aug 2019

      Science Nonfiction Elementary Plus

      When Venetia Burney’s grandfather reads aloud from the newspaper about a new discovery—a “ninth major planet” that has yet to be named—her eleven-year-old mind starts whirring. She is studying the planets in school and loves Roman mythology. “It might be called Pluto,” she says, thinking of the dark underworld. Grandfather loves the idea and contacts his friend at London’s Royal Astronomical Society, who writes to scientists at the Lowell Observatory in Massachusetts, where Pluto was discovered. After a vote, the scientists agree unanimously: Pluto is the perfect name for the dark, cold planet.

      Author’s note, with photograph of Venetia Burney as a child. Selected bibliography. Full-color illustrations were rendered in inks, in graphite powder, and digitally.

      The Tornado Scientist: Seeing Inside Severe Storms

      by Mary Kay Carson

      Jul 2019

      Nonfiction Middle

      Robin Tanamachi has been captivated by tornadoes and extreme weather her entire life. When she realized people researched weather for a job, she was hooked. She now studies tornadogenesis, or how tornadoes form, and what causes them to get weaker versus strengthen. For her, driving around in a Doppler radar truck aiming towards storms is a normal day in the office. The data she collects is then modeled and studied on computers– with math, physics, and computer science working hand in hand with meteorology. At the end of the day, knowing exactly how, when, and where these violent storms happen can give more warning time for everyone involved.

      Glossary. Online resources. Sources and selected bibliography. Index. Full-color photographs and illustrations.

      Shout

      by Laurie Halse Anderson

      Jul 2019

      Nonfiction High Plus

      Bestselling author Laurie Halse Anderson is known for the unflinching way she writes about, and advocates for, survivors of sexual assault. Now, inspired by her fans and enraged by how little in our culture has changed since her groundbreaking novel Speak was first published twenty years ago, she has written a poetry memoir that is as vulnerable as it is rallying, as timely as it is timeless. In free verse, Anderson shares reflections, rants, and calls to action woven between deeply personal stories from her life that she’s never written about before. Searing and soul-searching, this important memoir is a denouncement of our society’s failures and a love letter to all the people with the courage to say #MeToo and #TimesUp, whether aloud, online, or only in their own hearts. Shout speaks truth to power in a loud, clear voice—and once you hear it, it is impossible to ignore.

      Resources.
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