The Extraordinary Life of Katherine Johnson

Behind every great man is a great woman. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin may have been the ones to step on the moon but they wouldn’t have got there without the brilliant mathematician Katherine Johnson. Despite the gender and racial barriers Johnson faced throughout her career, she helped calculate the trajectory for Apollo 11, wrote one of the first textbooks on rocket science, and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom – the highest honour a citizen can receive.

Matilda by Roald Dahl

The highly gifted and intelligent Matilda Wormwood is neglected and berated by her parents, who instead favour her unexceptional brother just because he’s a boy. She is also terrorised by her headteacher Miss Trunchbull and refused a spot in a higher class. So, there’s only one thing for it – Matilda has to become her own hero and use her brainpower (and telekinetic powers) to teach all the bullies a lesson.

Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

Orphan Anne Shirley is sent to live with Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert. They have plans for her to help them out on their farm at Green Gables. The problem is Anne is a girl – not the boy they had expected. But that doesn’t stop her from convincing them to let her stay. Fierce, feisty and ambitious; Anne never lets her gender stand in the way of doing what she wants – she ends up being the one to save her family’s farm! Pretty impressive if you ask us.

Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens

Girls save the day (every time) in the Murder Most Unladylike series. Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong attend boarding school but they are also kick-ass detectives. They’ve formed their own detective agency – and in between their studies and all the emotions that come with being a teenager – they manage to solve cases before the adults. The series also showcases characters from all different backgrounds showing that heroes come in many forms.

Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison

Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History brings to life the true stories, struggles and achievements of 40 trailblazing women of colour in world history, through charming illustrations by author Vashti Harrison. From iconic pioneers of the Black Civil Rights movement to writers, singers, sportswomen and academics, Little Leaders will inspire the leaders of tomorrow and show that anything is possible. 

Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai

As a young girl growing up in Pakistan, Malala wished for a magic pencil with which she could redraw reality and magically erase acts of injustice. Although she never found a magic pencil, Malala soon discovered that her own actions can make a real difference in the world. This picture book shows readers the worldview that allowed Malala to hold on to hope and to make her voice heard even in the most difficult of times – it’s an important and empowering message for all ages.

Emmeline and the Plucky Pup by Megan Rix

It’s been over 100 years since women got the vote, a momentous time in history for the battle for female equality. The world’s first suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst was a key campaigner in that long-fought battle. But she couldn’t have done it without the help of her trusty pup Alfie who enabled her to deliver secret messages among her fellow suffragettes. This is a touching book that brings to life the history of the ‘Votes for Women’ campaign for younger readers.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Smashing the patriarchy doesn’t always have to be about activism. In Louisa May Alcott’s classic coming-of-age novel Little Women, Jo March challenges stereotypes to pursue a writing career in a time when a woman’s place in society was very different to present day. Her unwavering determination to realise her potential continues to be relevant in contemporary times and makes her a feminist heroine we can all relate to.

DC Super Hero Girls: Supergirl at Super Hero High by Lisa Yee

The recent loss of Supergirl’s family from Krypton is making it hard for her to settle into her new school, which we all know is tough – even at the best of times. Though she quickly bonds with her fellow pupils Wonder Woman and Barbara Gordon (aka Batgirl) she still has doubts about whether or not she should stay. Delivering plenty of action-packed superhero fun, this story sends a positive message about girl power, solidarity, and having the confidence and courage to believe in yourself.

Doctor Who: The Day She Saved the Doctor

Prepare to journey through space and time with four female companions, in four exciting new adventures told by four female writers. This timely storybook explores and celebrates the role of the companion as much more than just a sassy sidekick; saving the Doctor’s life is par for the course for these bad-ass women and each one is intelligent, emotionally complex and has a fascinating backstory. Leading female writers (and self-confessed Doctor Who superfans) Jenny T. Colgan, Susan Calman, Dorothy Koomson and Jaqueline Rayner bring Rose, Sarah-Jane, Clara and Bill centre stage in these compelling stories.

Who Was Marie Curie? by Megan Stine

Born during an era when it was forbidden for women to go to university, Marie Curie fought against adversity to become one of the world’s most celebrated and accomplished scientists. She discovered two elements and won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1911. This eBook details the story of her amazing life, giving insight into her struggles and her incredible achievements – it’s perfect for any budding science geeks.

The Fairytale Hairdresser and Aladdin by Abie Longstaff

Never judge a book by its cover – or its glitter! Kitty Lacey is a strong, independent businesswoman and this time she’s tangled up in a world of flying carpets, mysterious jewels and magical lamps. This modern take on a traditional fairy tale subverts gender roles; can Kitty rescue Aladdin, and save the day? The Fairytale Hairdresser series proves you can still be fabulous and a feminist.

Florence and the Mischievous Kitten by Megan Rix

In Victorian Britain, women who came from privileged backgrounds were expected to marry and look after the home. Not Florence Nightingale. She saw a different future for herself and went on to become an author, social reformer and the founder of modern nursing. Cats were also her favourite companions. It’s said she owned over 60 in her lifetime! And Megan Rix’s delightful new story follows a little kitten called Scamp who is owned by the Lady with the Lamp. After escaping through a window and becoming lost, Scamp is found by a young girl called Beth whilst she’s taking part in the London matchgirls strike of 1888.

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