Title: Extraordinary Women in History: 70 Remarkable Women Who Made a Difference, Inspired & Broke Barriers
Author: Leah Gail
Genre: Non-fiction / Biography / History
Extraordinary Women in History: 70 Remarkable Women Who Made a Difference, Inspired & Broke Barriers introduces us to the many women who have changed the world. From the Olympic champion who swam across the English Channel to the nurse who invented the first effective home security system, Gertrude Ederle and Marie Van Brittan Brown are just two of the outstanding women we get to know in this compilation of influential women through history.
From the first page, it’s clear that Gail took great care in choosing the women featured in the book. Each woman is highlighted for their greatest strengths, intriguing life stories, and inspiring achievements. This is a great resource for people looking for a jump start to do research, or for those who are simply interested in learning about history’s coolest women!
The book has a diverse group of women represented in the book. Nearly all disciplines and areas of expertise are covered, and the women themselves range in age, nationality, ethnicity, and race. There is also a good balance between the famous historical figures and ones we aren’t so familiar with. This balance keeps readers excited to read about the household names they know and love, while also intrigued by the new they may have never heard of before.
Unfortunately, each woman’s story is only a few pages long and they only scratch the surface of these women’s fascinating lives. With so much potential to flesh out the histories and personalities of these women that don’t get enough recognition in history books, readers may be left hoping for a more in depth look at each woman, rather than just a summary of their life and greatest achievements.
The lack of detail and the overall glossing over of some of these women’s complex, and often difficult, lives are especially clear in the most famous historical figures, namely Rosa Parks and Harriet Tubman. Dedicating a few more pages to discuss lesser-known facts, or even including direct quotes from the women, would’ve given readers a more complete picture of the women, as well as helped make us feel like we are truly getting to know each historical figure on a deeper level.
Though each woman had their own unique life, Hypatia’s story is one of the most interesting. Taking place in a time period and culture that is very far removed from the present day (360 AD-415 AD), her life was dedicated to the burgeoning subjects of mathematics, astronomy, and philosophy. The most intriguing fact about her is her shocking, heartbreaking murder by a mob.
The most fascinating, fun chapter is “Women with Wanderlust and Conservationists.” Full of women who are incredibly underrated, underrepresented, but certainly no less talented and intelligent than their more well-known peers, it discusses those who traveled the world and explored nature in ways that people to this day are still dreaming of experiencing.
Including pictures of the women, relics of their achievements, their equipment, offices, studies, or any memorabilia/documentation of their work could’ve helped make the book more interactive and engaging. Since the women were alive in such varying time periods, imagery would have been an effective way to add a transformative touch to the book.
In this tour of women’s iconic achievements, Extraordinary Women in History takes us back in time and across the world as we get to know the familiar and unfamiliar names behind some of the most influential events in history. Extraordinary Women in History highlights the best and the brightest of women and their colossal impact on the world. An especially great resource for students and teachers, Extraordinary Women in History is a perfect fit for readers of all ages who can glean inspiring messages of perseverance, hard work, and dedication.
This Editorial Review was written by the Book Review Directory staff. To receive a similarly honest, professional review for one of your own books, click here.