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Amelia to Zora: Twenty-Six Women Who Changed the World

by Cynthia Chin-Lee
Illustrated by Megan Halsey and Sean Addy

Published by Charlesbridge, 2005
32 pages
ISBN: 1-57091-522-9

Ages 5-10

In 26 brief biographical portraits, author Cynthia Chin-Lee offers children the opportunity to learn about accomplished women from many nations in many fields, and to also consider the ways childhood experiences and interests can influence what children grow up to do. Each woman is initially identified by her first name (to correspond to a letter of the alphabet) and a few words summarizing her life’s work. (“N is for Nawal, medical doctor, writer, and fighter for women’s rights” begins the profile of Nawal Ed Sadaawi.) Each profile starts by touching on one or more aspects of the individual’s childhood that can be seen as connecting in one way or another to the work she became know for as an adult. The text then summarize each woman’s accomplishments. In this diverse and dynamic mix, a few of the women chosen have been the subject of works for children (e.g., Amelia Earhart, Helen Keller), but the majority are fresh names and faces. All of them are presented with a lively, engaging blend of Chin-Lee’s narrative and Megan Halsey and Sean Addy’s fascinating visual interpretation of the women’s lives, such as the portrait of architect Maya Lin that includes a rubbing of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial she designed. (MS) ©2005 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

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