Books, Learning, Reviews

Girl Power – In Fairy Tales and the Real World

Well, National Women’s History Month is almost ending; but the idea behind it is for everyday, every month of the year, isn’t is? So the books I have been bringing to you this month are not just for today, or for this month, but for anytime, any day really… Here is one more (not sure if the last set) set of books to keep celebrating in the meantime…

The ‘Work It, Girl’ Books:

The ‘Work It, Girl’ books are a wonderful series of biographies of women. From the same group that publishes the Little People Big Dreams series I reviewed a few days ago, these books are for a slightly older audience than the LPBD books.

Written as biographies of women for older elementary and middle-grade readers – these books show you how these women overcame obstacles, worked through (well, literal) walls! I enjoyed the reads too!

The artwork in these books is super-cool – paper-collages which will inspire the reader to create! While the books themselves will of course be a true inspiration too, prompting the readers to challenge themselves, and work smart to achieve their dreams like the women featured in the book have done!

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J. K. Rowling

Title: Work It, Girl: Boss the bestseller list like J. K. Rowling
Author: Caroline Moss
Illustrator: Sinam Erkas
Publisher: Quarto Publishing Group – Frances Lincoln Childrens
Genre: Children’s Nonfiction
Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Hardcover: 64 pages
Source: Digital review copy via NetGalley

J.K. Rowling’s story from when she was little Jo, an avid reader who aspired to be just like her favoritest writer when she grew up, to who she is today, is one that will inspire everyone. She succeeded despite the odds, she food-stamped her way to success, she wrote in the gaps between naps (of her little one) – and today millions have enjoyed the story of the most famous wizard boy who did not know he was one!

“Anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.” – J.K.Rowling

Her story lets us know that if we persist, we can achieve greatness. It is a wonderful way to inspire young writers (and others too) to pursue their dreams; and keep going.

“You control your own life, your own will is extremely powerful.” – J.K.Rowling

And I totally loved the chapter titles – very imaginative! What’s not to love titles like ‘From Rags to ‘Richest”, or one that questions if F stands for Future rather than Failure; and a Chapter 9 3/4 too!

Goodreads || Book Depository
Barnes and Noble 

Oprah Winfrey

Title: Work It, Girl: Run the Show like CEO Oprah Winfrey
Author: Caroline Moss
Illustrator: Sinam Erkas
Publisher: Quarto Publishing Group – Frances Lincoln Childrens
Genre: Children’s Nonfiction
Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Hardcover: 64 pages
Source: Digital review copy via NetGalley

Faith and confidence in yourself matters ‘oh so much’, and that fact shines through the story of Oprah Winfrey in this book. At every point in her life, no matter the difficulties she was in or the obstacles she had to face, she believed she was meant to achieve great(er) things; and she did.

“You are not built to shrink down to less, but to blossom into more”Oprah

And she did not forget her roots, and those difficulties and obstacles. She knew there were others who are in the place she had been years ago; and wanted to give back; to provide a life full of opportunities to all those who need them.

“The happiness you feel is in direct proportion to the love you give.”

Goodreads ||  Book Depository
Target|| Barnes and Noble 

For both ‘Work It, Girl’ books above:

I am hoping the publishers will include more GirlBosses in this series; each of these two featured today are empowering, inspirational, and accessible to all audiences.

In addition, I loved those 10 life lessons from the featured woman included at the end of the book; along with questions to reflect on and a list of resources for further reading. The books are sprinkled with quotes that inspire – quotes from the featured women and quotes from others that seem to perfectly fit with their life.

And the illustrations – they are simply gorgeous. The paper-cut collage style illustrations in bright colors create a pop-out effect that is sure to appeal to, well, just about everyone!

I love the ‘Work It, Girl’ books – a must-read and a great addition to classroom and home libraries for boys and girls.

Rewritings of Fairy Tales:

Retellings are hard. But when written well, they are an easy read indeed. I am not the biggest fan of retellings but there have been a few books I have read and enjoyed and loved as well. Today, I feature a book I do have mixed feelings about. A little bit of this and some more of that kind of book.

The Restless Girls

Title: The Restless Girls
Author: Jessie Burton
Illustrator: Angela Barrett
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Age Range: years
Hardcover: pages
Source: Digital review copy via NetGalley

My Thoughts:

This one was a wonderful twist on the Twelve Dancing Princesses. If I had to summarize this book in one phrase, it would be: modern fantasy and forever feminism woven deftly in a children’s fairy tale.

I did have mixed feelings about this book though. On it’s plus side, it has:

  • the retelling itself – written just right for the target audience without going overboard on feminism and letting the readers know to follow their dreams, be it a veteranarian, a botanist, a writer, a singer, a cook, a pilot, a race-car driver, or more!
  • the sometimes lyrical quality of the language used – for example, phrases like “as secret as a moonlit pillow in a windowless room“, “as deep as a dream from which you might never wake“, and “sometimes a feeling can be as true as fact” are littered generously throughout the book making me smile.
  • and based on the cover-art, I am sure the illustrations would have been beautiful (unfortunately, this review copy was missing them – so maybe this is something I should have put in the list below?)

And then there were these things I could not help but wonder at:

  • some characters make an appearance in the book and I feel they should have/would have played a bigger role; but somehow they just seem to vanish silently
  • could such smart girls as portrayed in the book fail to recognize one of their own?

In Summary:

Overall, this is a book that will be enjoyed by the intended audience and for those fans of retellings of fairy tales as well. Like I said before, this is modern fantasy and forever feminism woven deftly in a children’s fairy tale.

Goodreads || Book Depository
Barnes and Noble 

Disclaimer: Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for the digital review copies of the books above. These are my honest opinions of each of the books.

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Girl Power - Work It, Girl series

7 thoughts on “Girl Power – In Fairy Tales and the Real World

  1. These sound like great books. It is nice to have inspirational books for younger girls to read. Thanks for sharing these; I hadn’t heard of these before.

  2. Those books look so cute! I’ve never seen them before! I had my eye on The Restless Girls because I love a good fairytale. I know they tend to be much slower paced but I always find them magical. I’ll certainly check it out in the future.

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