Books about Fearless Women
For me, Women’s History Month is about inspiring our children with stories from the past about how far we’ve come and how much further we have to go. These new picture books about fearless women from the past will inspire a new generation to face their own challenges with courage and grace.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no extra charge to you. I received complimentary copies of some of the books below for review purposes; however, all opinions are my own.
Books about Fearless Women
Let’s celebrate heroines from the past with these wonderful books about fearless women!
Maya and the Beast is a picture book from Brazilian big wave surfer Maya Gabeira, who has won multiple awards and is known for shattering world records (including her own). This beautifully illustrated book tells of Gabeira’s early life and how she first fell in love with surfing. The “Beast” refers to the gigantic waves along the Brazilian coast where Gabeira grew up. Although most people in her village were afraid of the Beast, Maya heard it calling to her, encouraging her to continue surfing despite her asthma and despite those who doubted her because she was a girl. A wonderful book to encourage kids to be persistent and listen to that voice calling to them to follow their dreams.
Most of us really don’t appreciate what goes into such necessary but dangerous jobs of the past, such as being a lighthouse keeper. Courage Like Kate shows in great detail how perilous this backbreaking job was, and why so many people believed women were incapable of performing the job. But young Kate Moore loved helping her father, especially as he had increasing difficulty with the grueling tasks required to keep the lighthouse going. When Kate rescued shipwrecked sailors, time and again they were shocked that it was a woman who had saved him. Yet when her father passed, Kate was afraid she would be denied the position (though she had been unofficially filling it for years). Thankfully, her application was successful, and she continued to serve as a lighthouse keeper in Connecticut until her retirement in her mid-sixties.
Did you know that the world’s first university was founded by a woman more than 1100 years ago? Don’t you wonder why you never knew this?? Fatima al-Fihri built al-Qarawiyyin Mosque, a center of higher education as well as worship. Over the centuries, it served as a center of learning that drew scholars from distant lands, including philosophers, mathematicians, and even a pope. Today it is recognized by UNESCO as the world’s oldest existing continually operating educational institution. One Wish is a lovely new book that helps to share Fatima al-Fihri’s story with the world, demonstrating her determination to overcome hardship to create a legacy to bring knowledge to her community and the world.