About 18 months ago I was playing with my daughter and she said to me, “I’ll be the princess and you be the knight so you can save me.” It hit me straight in the guts! My fiery little girl who I had been raising to be strong and independent was telling me that she needed saving.
The reality is that many of the stories that sit on family bookshelves are littered with happily ever afters. The princess meets prince and they live happily ever after formula. Of course there are books that break this mould, and at the same time the traditional fairy tale has its place, but the truly strong female characters are not as prevalent as they should be.
So when Christmas rolled around, a copy of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls* sat under the tree for my daughter.
I love that this book is more than a book. It is a movement to show young girls (and boys) the strength of what women can achieve. That women throughout history have been achieving incredible things, even though we might not have heard their stories. That it is ok to want to be different, to be strong and to celebrate difference in diversity in those around us.
Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls* shares the stories of 100 extraordinary women from throughout history. From Coco Chanel to Jane Austen, Michelle Obama, Marie Curie, Malala and Amelia Earhart plus a host of names you have probably never heard of, the stories both modern day and from the pages of history, are shared in simple language that kids can understand and relate to.
There is Brenda Chapman, Director of Disney film Brave for which she won an Oscar and a Golden Globe. The Mirabel Sisters, Minerva, Patria, Teresa and Dede, four courageous sisters who organised a movement to restore democracy in the Dominican Republic. Maud Stevens Wagner, the first known female tattoo artist in the United States. Wang Zhenyi, a Chinese astronomer from the 1700s who was passionate about making maths and science accessible to all people.
We read it every night before bed and she now knows her favourites so she can tell us about them as she flips the pages. And I’ll admit that it has also been an education for me. We still read our princess books but this is where the magic really lies.
* this post contains affiliate links but this is a book I have purchased and LOVE and I hope you will too!
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