TITLE: Leading the Way: Women in Power
BY: Sen. Janet Howell and Theresa Howell, illustrated by Kyle Akia and Alexandra Bye (Candlewick Press), age 10 or older, 133 pages, $24.99.
STORY: Books meant to convince girls they have unlimited options are not rare, but it's unusual to see one that touts living women who aren't in sports or showbiz. Many sketch the biographies of super famous and deeply obscure dead women. Not that death disqualifies a girl from role modeling, but defaulting to departed heroines — Cleopatra, Jane Austen, Harriet Tubman, Marie Curie — perversely suggests modern achievers should model, act, sing and/or marry princes.
A known Democrat, Hillary Rodham Clinton, wrote the introduction here, and the book includes other liberal and progressive women, but politics vary among the 50 honorees. In one scan, I spotted Betty Ford, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Elizabeth Dole, Susan Collins, Susana Martinez, Sandra Day O'Connor, Diane Humetewa, Clare Boothe Luce, Condoleezza Rice ...
Arkansans will pay extra attention to the stories of Hattie Caraway and Lottie Shackelford, but each of these women is a unique illustration of odds overcome, challenges accepted and ambition directed toward the public good.
This book is a likely gift for a rising young American.
Read to Me is a weekly review of short books.
Style on 12/23/2019