SHE is a love letter to all the women who have thrown out the rulebook and threatened the status quo. It’s a toast to the brave, bold and brilliant women who make us proud to be ladies.
From fashion icon Coco Chanel to Queen Cleopatra, from literary legend Jane Austen to trailblazer Michelle Obama and from kick-ass activist Malala Yousafzai to the one-and-only Beyoncé, SHE honours 100 truly renegade women, from history through to present day.
SHE by Harriet Hall is a compact book highlighting 100 women from history who contributed to positive change within society. Some of these women have long since passed, but some are still alive today.
What I loved most about this book is that each woman was dedicated only two pages — one page had a black and white sketch illustration of the woman, and the other page detailed their life story. I loved that their story was summarised so succinctly.
I’ve read a lot of these types of books and I always felt like there was too much description that could’ve been edited down. Essentially, I think the reader wants a quick snapshot of how that person changed history, so a one-page summary is really wonderful.
“History paints Cleopatra as a beguiling woman who had legendary affairs with Rome’s two most powerful leaders. But this telling of events overlooks her military aptitude an an intelligence that enabled her to rule a country fragmented by male-dominated political turmoil for two decades.”
SHE transcends decades and doesn’t just stick to the same women you read about in these kinds of books. Yes, Harriet talks about Marie Curie and Maya Angelou, but she also talks about Hillary Clinton and Beyonce.
This is a really great book for young readers, because there isn’t too much reading and there are illustrations to look at. Plus, the compact size of the book will be appealing to young children.
“The work of Joan Clarke is relatively unknown, but she played a vital role in breaking the code that eventually led to the end of the Second World War.”
This book is filled with inspirational women and their amazing stories. I really enjoyed reading it — I finished it in one sitting on the train to work. It’s been curated so well and the black and white illustrations are stunning. This would make a great addition to anyone’s library.
“The only woman on the team, Sacagawea proved an invaluable member. Clark noted in his diaries that she foraged for edible plants and bought horses for travel. In one particularly dangerous moment, she saved vital cargo when the team’s boat capsized.”
I recommend this to parents who aren’t looking for something too complex for their kids to read. As I mentioned, each woman is explained with only one page so it’s easy to move through this book quickly. I imagine young girls will love reading about all these inspirational women.
Thank you to the publisher for mailing me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
SHE: A Celebration of 100 Renegade Women
Hachette Book Publishers