Review of Rejected Princesses by Jason Porath

Rejected Princesses: Tales of History’s Boldest Heroines, Hellions & Heretics by Jason Porath. ★★★★ Several years ago I stumbled across the blog Rejected Princesses. Jason Porath, a former animator at Dreamworks, one day had a conversation about what women were too out there to ever become a Disney princess movie. The result was Rejected Princesses, a blog…

Review of Slipping by Lauren Beukes

Slipping: Stories, Essays & Other Writing by Lauren Beukes. ★★★ Lauren Beukes is a white South African journalist and fiction writer, who often uses speculative elements in her stories. Prior to reading Slipping, the only work of her’s I’d read was her novel Zoo City, which had an interesting enough concept that I was willing to try other works…

Review of The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage by Sydney Paudua

The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage by Sydney Padua. ★★★★★ The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage is an absolutely delightful graphic novel that contains a wealth of historical information regarding Ada Lovelace, Charles Babbage, and the history of computing while at the same time being relentlessly entertaining. The book begins with a brief history of…

Review of The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley

The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley. ★★★★ The Geek Feminist Revolution is a collection of essays by science fiction and fantasy author Kameron Hurley, who’s written a continually growing number of novels (hint, readGod’s War!) and the Hugo Award winning essay “We Have Always Fought.” While the topic of the collection is nominally the intersection of feminism…

Review of Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel. ★★★★ Fun Home is a memoir told in the form of a graphic novel. When Alison Bechdel was twenty, her father died, four months after Alison came out as a lesbian and shortly thereafter found out that her father had affairs with men.

Review of The Prince of Los Cocuyos by Richard Blanco

The Prince of Los Cocuyos by Richard Blanco. ★★★★ Recently I had the chance to attend a reading by Richard Blanco, who was the inaugural poet for President Obama in 2012. He was the first Latino, gay person, and immigrant to ever hold this position. I loved his reading so much, that I immediately rushed off to…

Review of Funny in Farsi by Firoozeh Dumas

Funny in Farsi by Firoozeh Dumas. ★★★★ Funny in Farsi is a memoir by a woman who grew up in both Iran and the United States. Her family moved to the United States in 1972, when Firoozeh Dumas was seven years old. Neither she or her mother spoke any English, although her father had some experience with the…

Review of The Secret History of the Mongol Queens by Jack Weatherford

The Secret History of the Mongol Queens: How the Daughters of Genghis Khan Rescued His Empire by Jack Weatherford. ★★★★★ A section from the ancient text The Secret History of the Mongols was cut away by censors, leaving only these words of Genghis Khan: “Let us reward our female offspring.” In The Secret History of the Mongol Queens, Jack Weatherford…

Review of Science of the Magical by Matt Kaplan

Science of the Magical: From the Holy Grail to Love Potions to Superpowers by Matt Kaplan. ★★★ In Science of the Magical, science writer for The Economist Matt Kaplan investigates possible scientific truths behind tales of the magical from folklore, mythology and pop culture. For instance, can examining the liver of an animal really tell you anything about the future?…

Review of Laughing Without an Accent by Firoozeh Dumas

Laughing Without an Accent by Firoozeh Dumas. ★★★★ Laughing Without an Accent is a collection of memoirs by Firoozeh Dumas, a woman who moved from Iran to America before the revolution.  The book is by turns funny, serious, and inspirational. “. . . to deny someone an education is not just a crime but a sin, because you…

Review of The Riddle of the Labyrinth by Margalit Fox

The Riddle in the Labyrinth by Margalit Fox. ★★★★ The Riddle of the Labyrinth: The Quest to Crack an Ancient Code is an appealing non-fiction account of the deciphering of the script Linear B and in particular the woman who was vital to its solution. In 1900 archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans uncovered a catch of fired clay tablets…

Review of Revolutionary Mothers by Carol Berkin

Revolutionary Mothers by Carol Berkin. ★★★ Revolutionary Mothers is an overview of the role women played in the revolutionary war. Since it was a home front war, American women were very close with the events. Among other roles, some acted as spies or messengers, organized funds for the troops, took care of homes and businesses while the men…