Biographies for Children of Amazing Women
One of the best ways to celebrate Women’s History Month is by learning about the lives of real life heroines! Below are some of our favorite biographies for children of amazing women – from engineers and authors to race car drivers and activists!
Disclaimer: I received complimentary copies of some of the books below for review purposes; however, all opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no extra charge to you.
Biographies for Children of Amazing Women
Enjoy these biographies for children about truly remarkable women!
The Girl Who Could Fix Anything is the incredible story of Beatrice Shilling, an engineer best known for her work during World War II, when her invention helped save the faltering planes of the British Royal Air Force. Her mechanical aptitude became obvious to all that worked with her, yet Shilling faced discrimination throughout her career – despite her achievements, she was never awarded with a top position in the Royal Aircraft Establishment. Even so, all of the pilots knew to whom they could turn when they had a problem, because no one could fix an engine like Beatrice Shilling.
Kitty O’Neil truly was The Fastest Girl on Earth! In addition to being a Hollywood stuntwoman and all around daredevil, O’Neil broke the women’s land-speed record in 1976. Her accomplishments are all the more impressive because she lost her hearing as an infant! This wonderful picture book captures the excitement and joy O’Neil felt and that she imparted to everyone who witnessed her amazing feats.
Can you imagine a time when there were no shelters for women? Back then, it was believed that women didn’t experience homelessness, just men! But Kip Tiernan, who often volunteered to feed the hungry, would often see women disguised as men just so they could get a good meal and a place to sleep. And so she fought to open a shelter just for women, a welcoming place different from all the dreary homeless shelters she had seen. Through her efforts, Rosie’s Place opened in 1974. The beautiful new picture book Sanctuary: Kip Tiernan and Rosie’s Place is a tribute to the woman who worked tirelessly to make a shelter for women a reality.
Every child who has ever felt different or misunderstood will find a champion in the life of writer Flannery O’Connor. The picture book biography The Strange Birds of Flannery O’Connor focuses on O’Connor’s fascination with unusual birds as a way to shape the story of her colorful life. Intensely creative and driven, O’Connor was also marked by grief. As a child, she suffered the loss of her father from Lupus then later developed the disease herself. This colorful book gives us insight into the inner life of this great author – and her love of the unusual and daring.
Susanna’s Midnight Ride: The Girl Who Won the Revolutionary War is a little known tale from American history about a teenage girl who helped save the Revolution! Readers of this middle grade novel will identify with spunky Susanna Bolling, who longs to help with the rebellion rather than just do her chores as home with the rest of the women. But when the British take over the family’s plantation, Susanna wonders whether she can be brave enough to warn the American soldiers of the plans she has overheard in her own home. To do so, she must race through the night, crossing enemy lines and risking not just her life but the lives of her family. A wonderfully told adventure that brings to life this period in history as seen through the eyes of an American girl.
We have enjoyed learning about Dolley Madison in the past, so I was delighted for a chance to review the middle grade novel Dolley Madison & the War of 1812: America’s First Lady. And what a character she was! I love how the author lets Madison’s larger than life personality shine through without ever making her into a caricature. Instead, her story is told with tenderness and honesty, showing the First Lady’s flaws as well as her strengths. The book provides a wonderful insider’s view of the young country and of a war which many of us know little about. What comes through so clearly is Madison’s sparkling personality but also her commitment to her country, for which she made such incredible sacrifices.