Saturday, November 19, 2016

Book Review: Rad Women Worldwide by Kate Schatz

Title: Rad Women Worldwide: Artists and Athletes, Pirates and Punks, and Other Revolutionaries Who Shaped History
Author: Kate Schatz, illustrated by Miriam Klein Stahl
Pages: 112 pages
Release Date: September 27, 2016
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Genre: Nonfiction; Biography; History; Women's Studies
My Rating: 5/5

Educational and inspirational, this New York Times bestseller from the authors of Rad American Women A-Z, is a bold, illustrated collection of 40 biographical profiles showcasing extraordinary women from around the world.

Rad Women Worldwide tells fresh, engaging, and inspiring tales of perseverance and radical success by pairing well researched and riveting biographies with powerful and expressive cut-paper portraits. From 430 BCE to 2016, spanning 31 countries around the world, the book features an array of diverse figures, including Hatshepsut (the great female king who ruled Egypt peacefully for two decades) and Malala Yousafzi (the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize) to Poly Styrene (legendary teenage punk and lead singer of X-Ray Spex) and Liv Arnesen and Ann Bancroft (polar explorers and the first women to cross Antarctica). This progressive and visually arresting book is a compelling addition to women's history and belongs on the shelf of every school, library, and home. 

Rad Women Worldwide highlights powerful leaders throughout history. Schatz's biographies are engaging and digestible and pair well with Stahl's minimalist portraits. Many of these women across the 31 countries gave their (literal) lives fighting for causes close to them. Some campaigned for their native land and language by taking on corporations looking to exploit. Others fought for the environment by planting trees or combating palm oil companies to save orangutans. Some pushed for civil rights by taking on racial discrimination and equal access to reproductive health. Artists overshadowed throughout their life went on to have eternal glory. Other artists are presently fighting for equal representation at major art museums. There were soccer stars, tennis players, and mountain climbers who made it to the top (again, literally) against all odds. And you can do all of this too.

My favorites from Rad Women Worldwide:
"I have more than enough courage to suffer this death and a thousand more. Do not forget my example." Instead of obeying orders to turn away from a firing squad, Policarpa "La Pola" Salavarrieta, heroine of the independence of Colombia, faced her executioners.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a self-taught New Spain scholar, entered a convent and became a nun solely "to have a fixed occupation which might curtail my freedom to study." In short, she was crashing at God's house because it gave her academic freedom. I like it.

Grace "Granuaile" O'Malley, an Irish pirate, proposed marriage to her second husband only because she wanted his castle. A year later, she divorced him by saying "I dismiss you." Savage.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this honest review.

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