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Book Recs: Mini Biography Collections to Read for #WomensHistoryMonth

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Happy Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day bookworms!

I don’t know about you all, but I love reading mini biography collections.  I have a hard time reading nonfiction in general, so these “bite sized” biographies are just right for me.  Plus, by reading a collection of mini biographies you get to read about so many different women in history, and not just a few.  This also allows you pick and choose women you’d like to read more about, and maybe even read a full length biography in the future.

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This is by no means an exhaustive list of mini biography collections to read in honor of Women’s History Month, but a list of books that I have personally read.  I will update as I read more books that deserve a spot on this list.

» Bygone Badass Broads by Mackenzie Lee

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Based on Mackenzi Lee’s popular weekly Twitter series of the same name, Bygone Badass Broads features 52 remarkable and forgotten trailblazing women from all over the world. With tales of heroism and cunning, in-depth bios and witty storytelling, Bygone Badass Broads gives new life to these historic female pioneers. Starting in the fifth century BC and continuing to the present, the book takes a closer look at bold and inspiring women who dared to step outside the traditional gender roles of their time. Coupled with riveting illustrations and Lee’s humorous and conversational storytelling style, this book is an outright celebration of the badass women who paved the way for the rest of us.

Lee has really complied a wonderful list of diverse women throughout history here in Bygone Badass Broads! I appreciate her dedication to celebrating women from around the world & their contributions to history that have been overlooked.  Lee has an AMAZING sense of humor and it really shines through in this book – I found myself laughing out loud throughout the entirety of the book. If all nonfiction was written this way, I’d read more of it for sure.  This book is targeted to the YA audience, which is another thing I love.  Lee is passionate about getting more YA readers to read more history.


» Women Who Dared by Linda Skeers

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Women have been doing amazing, daring, and dangerous things for years, but they’re rarely mentioned in our history books as adventurers, daredevils, or rebels. This new compilation of brief biographies features women throughout history who have risked their lives for adventure—many of whom you may not know, but all of whom you’ll WANT to know, such as:
• Annie Edson Taylor, the first person who dared to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel
• Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman who dared to fly in space
• Helen Gibson, the first woman who dared to be a professional stunt person
• And many more!
This is the perfect read for anyone who wants to know what it means to explore, discover, play, climb, and fight like a girl!

Women Who Dared features 52 women throughout history that are lesser known & overlooked.  I was pleasantly surprised & delighted to find this book was fairly diverse, at least racially.  While this book is technically geared towards the middle grade audience, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about these amazing women.


» Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison

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Featuring forty trailblazing black women in American history, Little Leaders educates and inspires as it relates true stories of breaking boundaries and achieving beyond expectations. Illuminating text paired with irresistible illustrations bring to life both iconic and lesser-known female figures of Black history such as abolitionist Sojourner Truth, pilot Bessie Coleman, chemist Alice Ball, politician Shirley Chisholm, mathematician Katherine Johnson, poet Maya Angelou, and filmmaker Julie Dash. Among these biographies, readers will find heroes, role models, and everyday women who did extraordinary things – bold women whose actions and beliefs contributed to making the world better for generations of girls and women to come. Whether they were putting pen to paper, soaring through the air or speaking up for the rights of others, the women profiled in these pages were all taking a stand against a world that didn’t always accept them. The leaders in this book may be little, but they all did something big and amazing, inspiring generations to come.

I really enjoyed that this book focused on black women & their contributions to U.S. history.  This book is geared towards a middle grade audience, but I still enjoyed this as an adult.  This would be a wonderful book to read your middle grade aged child for Black History Month or Women’s History Month.  I thought the illustrations were absolutely adorable.


» Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World by Rachel Ignotofsky

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A charmingly illustrated and educational book, Women in Sciencehighlights the contributions of fifty notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world. Full of striking, singular art, this fascinating collection also contains infographics about relevant topics such as lab equipment, rates of women currently working in STEM fields, and an illustrated scientific glossary. The trailblazing women profiled include well-known figures like primatologist Jane Goodall, as well as lesser-known pioneers such as Katherine Johnson, the African-American physicist and mathematician who calculated the trajectory of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission to the moon. 
 
Women in Science celebrates the achievements of the intrepid women who have paved the way for the next generation of female engineers, biologists, mathematicians, doctors, astronauts, physicists, and more!

This collection of mini biographies focused on 50 influential women in STEM fields.  I found this book to be so inspirational.   It blows my mind what each of these women were able to accomplish during their lives, especially given the fact that society did all it could to put up road blocks for these women.  Many faced discrimination, harassment, exclusions, lack of assess to education, lack of credit given for their work… Yet still they endured.


» Women in Sports: 50 Fearless Athletes Who Played to Win by Rachel Ignotofsky

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Women in Sports highlights notable women’s contributions to competitive athletics to inspire readers young and old. Keeping girls interested in sports has never been more important: research suggests that girls who play sports get better grades and have higher self-esteem–but girls are six times more likely to quit playing sports than boys and are unlikely to see female athlete role models in the media. A fascinating collection full of striking, singular art, Women in Sports features 50 profiles and illustrated portraits of women athletes from the 1800s to today including trailblazers, Olympians, and record-breakers in more than 40 different sports. The book also contains infographics about relevant topics such as muscle anatomy, a timeline of women’s participation in sports, statistics about women in athletics, and influential female teams.

This collection features 50 influential women in sports.  Women have often been refereed to as “the weaker sex” throughout history, but here are 50 women that proved that statement wrong!


» Herstory: 50 Women and Girls Who Shook Up the World by Katherine Halligan

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Move aside history—it’s time for herstory.

Celebrate fifty inspiring and powerful women who changed the world and left their mark in this lavishly illustrated biography compilation that’s perfect for fans of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls and She Persisted. 

Throughout history, girls have often been discussed in terms of what they couldn’t or shouldn’t do.

Not anymore.

It’s time for herstory—a celebration of not only what girls can do, but the remarkable things women have already accomplished, even when others tried to stop them.

In this uplifting and inspiring book, follow the stories of fifty powerhouse women from around the world and across time who each managed to change the world as they knew it forever. Telling the stories of their childhood, the challenges they faced, and the impact of their achievements, each lavishly illustrated spread is a celebration of girl power in its many forms. From astronauts to activists, musicians to mathematicians, these women are sure to motivate young readers of all backgrounds to focus not on the can’ts and shouldn’ts, but on what they can do: anything!

Another collection of mini biographies to celebrate influential women throughout history.   Herstory features a few women that I have not seen much of in other mini biography collections: Mother Theresa, Anne Frank, Annie Sullivan, Emily Brontë, Frida Kahlo…

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LetsChat

Have you read any of these biography collections?  If so, what did you think?

Do you have any biography collections you’d add to this list?

Comment below & let me know 🙂

8 thoughts on “Book Recs: Mini Biography Collections to Read for #WomensHistoryMonth”

  1. I hope the sports book covers the U.S. Women’s Soccer team. Abby Wambach played for that team, and she is the highest goal scorer in professional soccer history — notice I didn’t say women’s soccer. Hope Solo and Carli Lloyd fought to get equal pay for the women’s professional soccer teams. They bring in just as many, and oftentimes more, fans than men’s soccer, so it’s just straight up prejudice holding them back. Currently, and I’m sure you saw this in the news, Lloyd is still fighting; you probably saw mentions of it in the news on International Women’s Day. Wambach has retired and Solo was suspended.

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