Jane Yolen, author of over 300 children’s books, never ceases to amaze me with her wide range of topics. She has teamed up with her daughter, Criminologist Heidi E.Y. Stemple, to write “Bad Girls: Sirens, Jezebels, Murderesses, Thieves & Other Female Villains”, published in February 2013 just in time for Women’s History Month. The book tells the stories of 26 of the most notorious women in history.
As Rebecca Guay humorously illustrates in her cartoon drawings of the authors weighing viewpoints, Yolen and Stemple have written a book that invites mothers and daughters to discuss crime, moral values, and feminism in a historical context. Those who know their Bible characters will recognize the names of Delilah and Jezebel, and perhaps the lesser known Salome. The more infamous historical characters include Cleopatra, Bloody Mary, Catherine the Great, and Typhoid Mary.
Each chapter presents a historical narrative of one female, describing why she was known as a ‘bad girl’ within the context of the times. The authors present the dilemmas or rationale behind each woman’s actions in an age-appropriate way. The research behind each history is documented in the bibliography. If you are looking for a nonfiction biography that promotes critical thinking to give to your daughter and perhaps read along with her, this is a good pick.
For more information, including the Readers’ Theatre or Discussion Guide, visit the publisher’s website at http://www.charlesbridge.com/contributorinfo.cfm?ContribID=384
Published by Charlesbridge
Product Code: 91851
Ages: 10 - 13
Hardcover Price: $18.95