Hands down, Women in Science is my favorite book to come across the FangirlNation desk this year. Written and illustrated by Rachel Ignotofsky, the book highlights 50 women who helped change the world of STEM.
Each scientist gets an illustration, small blurbs about their accomplishments, and one long page describing their lives and contributions to science. Ignotofsky’s illustrations are fantastic and present these women in a way that is classy and gets their contributions across. While some names like Hedy Lamar, Marie Curie, and Jane Goodall are familiar there, are some women who haven’t been as prominent. Alice Ball was the first African-American and woman to graduate from the University of Hawaii. She went on to develop the first cure for leprosy, before antibiotics were developed for it in the 1940’s. Grace Hooper was a Navy Admiral and also created the COBOL computer language. There are many more you’ve likely not heard of, but most certainly should have.
What this book does so well is covering women from all walks of life. Women of all races, ages, and time periods fill these pages. Even better, the book makes sure to highlight a section just on recent female scientists making amazing contributions and emphasizes that the reader might just be the next scientist to grace the pages. What all these women have in common is their willingness to fight back when the world said no to their dreams.
Women in Science balances key facts and bright images with longer passages, making this book appropriate for both younger and older readers. After finishing this book, I made sure to pass it along to my boyfriend’s daughter so we can read it together.
Women in Science is now available from Ten Speed Press.