First things first. Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History is the book every little girl should have. Vashti Harrison has written something so important, so bold and full to the brim with inspiring, successful and brilliant Black women who broke down barriers, opened doors and smashed ceilings. Maya? Serena? Oprah? Yes, they’re all there, plus many more...
Before recording my sections I read the book cover to cover (enjoying the lovely illustrations by Vashti on the way) and shamefully there were a few women featured that I wasn’t hugely familiar with. That’s the great thing about Little Leaders, it brought to my attention (and I’m sure others too) to women who aren’t so universally familiar. For example, Bessie Coleman (1892-1926) who became the first African American woman in the world to receive her pilot’s licence and Althea Gibson (1927-2003) who was the first African American woman to win a tennis Grand Slam! The book isn’t just about American women though; it also shines a light on some Black British women who paved the way.
Being asked to contribute to the Little Leaders audiobook felt like such an honour. When bringing somebody else's words to life there comes with it a sense of responsibility. You want to do it right, you want to honour their work and in this case, you also want to honour the terrific women who came before you - and hopefully through your voice inspire the generations to come.
We’re living in a time where women of colour feel liberated to have a voice, where representation really matters and where “Black Girl Magic” is no longer a secret. Here’s to the next generation of Little Leaders!
Buy Little Leaders audiobook on Audible