“I Am A Woman Phenomenally. Phenomenal Woman That’s Me”

March is Women’s History Month. A month designated by Congress, in 1987, to celebrate and recognize the accomplishments of women. This year has already been extremely monumental, as we celebrated the swearing-in of the first Black and Southeast Asian person and first-ever woman as Vice President of the United States. Women have been shattering glass ceilings for the last few years; however, even in 2021, women are still not always allowed to sit at the “table,” but I know that it is only a matter of time before that table is filled with women. 

In celebration of women making history, you should head over to the Bookedbag, and grab a book protector to support the group of women behind this business. A group of women making history in their own rights, as they are part of only 40% of women in the United States who are business owners. More importantly, you will want to get the following books protected as I am sure they will become some of your new favorites. 

I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai (2013) - In 2021, I am not sure if there is anyone who does not know at least part of Malala Yousafzai’s story. In 2012, Malala’s life was changed forever, and it was all because she chose to speak up for what she believed in and fight for what she knew was right. This book illustrates the aftermath of  Malala’s shooting. Although they tried to silence her, Malala could not be silenced, and her voice has only become louder and stronger since 2012. As the saying goes, “if you educate a man you educate an individual, but if you educate a woman, you educate a whole nation,” and Malala Yousafzai is one woman who embodies this quote. 

Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (2009) - This book chronicles the journeys of Pulitzer Prize journalists, Nicolas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, as they travel around the world to shed light on the oppressive conditions many women live in today. Despite the heart-wrenching stories, Half the Sky, is a book about survival, overcoming obstacles, and the true strength of women. The women featured in this book are women who have decided that despite the horrific conditions they are faced with they will fight back to create a better world for not only themselves, but for those who come after them.  

I’m Not Dying With You Tonight by Kimblery Jones and Gilly Segal (2019) - As a high school English teacher, I am always looking for new YA books to introduce to my students, and this book has been on my list for quite some time because of the unique way it is written. This book follows two high school girls, Lena, the popular girl who loves fashion and standing out in a crowd, and Campbell, the new girl who is struggling to find her place in her school. The two girls are forced to rely on each other to survive what starts as a typical Friday night but quickly explodes from built-up tension due to hate and violence within the community. As Lena and Campbell fight for their survival, they are also confronted with unpacking issues like prejudice, biases, and what defines right and wrong. What makes this book different from other similar YA novels that explore the plight of today's black and brown teenagers from urban cities, is that it follows two girls, one black and one white. As the girls explore the aforementioned issues together, each chapter goes back and forth from Lena’s perspective to Campbell’s perspective. The authors, one black, Kimberly Jones and one white, Gilly Segal, provide a unique and what appears to be a very authentic experience for readers with the way this book has been written.

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