She Persisted All Around the World by Chelsea Clinton

Remember the United Nation’s 

International Day of the Girl Child, Oct. 11, 2018

She Persisted All Around the World

Chelsea Clinton, Author

Alexandra Boiger, Illustrator

Philomel Books, Nonfiction, Mar. 6, 2018

Suitable for Ages: 4-8

Theme: Girls, Women, Diversity, Pursuing dreams, Persistence, Making a difference

Opening: It’s not always easy being a girl — anywhere in the world. It’s especially challenging in some places. There are countries where it’s hard for girls to go to school and where women need their husband’s permission to get a passport or even t o leave the house.


Women around the world have long dreamed big, even when they’ve been told their dreams didn’t matter. They’ve spoken out, risen up and fought for what’s right, even when they’ve been told to be quiet. Whether in science, the arts, sports or activism, women and girls throughout history have been determined to break barriers and change the status quo. They haven’t let anyone get in their way and have helped us better understand our world and what’s possible. In this companion book to She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World, Chelsea Clinton introduces readers to a group of thirteen incredible women who have shaped history all across the globe.

She Persisted Around the World is a book for everyone who has ever aimed high and been told to step down, for everyone who has ever raised their voice and been told to quiet down, and for everyone who has ever felt small, unimportant or unworthy.

Why I like this book:

Chelsea Clinton’s inspiring book empowers/encourages girls worldwide to nurture their big dreams and never give up.  There may be difficult times, but they must be true to themselves and fight for what they believe. Challenges build character and resilience and leads to success. It’s important for girls to find the power inside them and believe in it so they will one day be the next generation of doctors, scientists, environmentalists, artists, leaders, authors, astronauts and athletes.

This is what girls will learn as they delve into the stories of 13 ground-breaking women who never give-up despite the extraordinary challenges they faced. There are some familiar faces like Joanne (J.K.) Rowling, author of the bestselling Harry Potter series ; Marie Curie’s work in radioactivity; Malala Yousafzai’s tireless work to promote better education for girls globally; and Yuan Yuan Tan who against many odds, becomes the most famous Chinese ballerina of all times, performing at the San Francisco Ballet.

And the not-so-familiar women like Dr. Mary Verghese who loses the use of her legs in a car accident, and founds the first functional rehabilitation center in India; Leymah Gbowee who lives through the two Liberian civil war and unites thousands of Christian and Muslim women to peacefully protest and help end the war; and Aisha Rateb who was the first woman appointed to Egypt’s highest court, 50 years after she was first told she couldn’t be a judge.

Alexandra Boiger’s lively watercolors and ink illustrations showcase each motivating story. I like the book’s format. Each girl/woman is given a double-page spread with her motivating story shared on the inside page and a full illustration on the opposite page that also includes an important quote from the woman. This book belongs in every school library and pairs nicely with Clinton’s first book, She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World.

Resources: Encourage students to name someone in their family, school, community, country and world that they feel has made a contribution. Even children are making changes in their world. Have kids draw a picture of the individual and write a short paragraph about what this person has done to help others. Also check out the UN’s International Day of the Girl Child.

Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book. To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books (PPB) with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s website.

*Book: Library Copy

Yasmin’s Hammer – International Day of the Girl

Yasmin's Hammer9781600603594_p0_v1_s260x420Yasmin’s Hammer

Ann Malaspina, Author

Doug Ghayka, Illustrator

Lee & Low Books, Inc., Fiction, 2010

Suitable for ages: 5-11

Themes:  Child Labor, Educating Girls, Bangladesh, Family Life, Hope

Opening:  “Before the sun climbs into the sky I jump into Abba’s rented rickshaw, my hammer in one hand and my sister, Mita, by my side.”

Synopsis:  Yasmin and her family move from their rural village by the sea after a cyclone destroys their home and their Abba’s rice fields.  They settle in Dhaka, Bangladesh, a crowded and noisy city,  where her family begins a new life.  Yasmin and her sister, Mita, must work daily as brick chippers to help support the family.  Her father peddles a rickshaw and her mother works as a maid in a rich man’s house.  Yasmin dreams of going to school and receiving an education.  This determined girl, works harder and faster than the others and earns extra taka coins.  Yasmin has a plan to improve the life of her family and follow her dreams.

Why I like this book:  Ann Malaspina lets Yasmin narrate this inspiring story.  It is an important look at how crucial education is to a child living in a third world country.  Yasmin is a very strong and passionate character with dreams to inspire her. Doug Ghayka’s colorful oil paintings give the reader a feeling of the sites, sounds and smells of the busy streets of Dhaka and capture the family’s struggle to survive.  This is an excellent book for school libraries.  You may visit Ann Malaspina at her website.  She wrote this story after visiting South Asia and learning about the 218 million children in Bangladesh who must work.

Resources:  Make sure you check out the backmatter at the end of the book as it gives important information about Bangladesh, cyclones, the economy, child labor and special links to important websites.  There is also a glossary.  Talking about child labor and education are engaging subjects for young minds.  There is so much they take for granted.

Today is the UN International Day of the Girl Child.  It is a day “to recognize girls’ rights and the unique  challenges girls face around the world. For its second observance, this year’s Day will  focus on “Innovating for Girls’ Education”.  Check out the highlighted UN page to find ways to participate and make a difference in locally or globally.   You may also want to look at websites focusing on the education of girls:  Girl Rising, The Girl Effect and the Girl’s Education Collaborative

Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book.  To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Books.