March is a month with a perfect (English-language) name. And it carries a perfect theme- Women’s History Month. Either way, March dwells in the world of movin’ on, heading out.
PLUS, for a good cause you can bid on She Sang Promise, my picture book about Betty Mae Jumper, at the link below.
I think of two important books for young readers, one about a real girl who is still a girl, far across the ocean, and one about the girlhood of a real Canadian woman. Two titles about lives where a person’s struggle to gain the right of individual choice, paid off.
As the first story I share opens, NUJOOD ALI is living a restricted life in Yemen, the land of the Queen of Sheba, as her book relates. This helps set the exotic scene of men who wear curved daggers in public, while girls and women are expected to remain heavily veiled and to follow all wishes that their father desires. Nujood’s father arranges her marriage. She is beaten and held a prisoner by her husband and in-laws. She is raped by her husband, who has promised not to have intercourse until at least her first period. She is a child, after all. Her true story is told in matter-of-fact and page-turning fashion, with the help of international journalist Delphine Minoui, in I AM NUJOOD, AGE 10 AND DIVORCED.
For the experience of MARGARET POKIAK-FENTON, travel far north of the United States into the realm of Arctic Canada. Margaret’s childhood shimmers with the love of her family and her community. She is a skillful Inuit child, able to direct her own dog sled across the vast Northwest Territory ice. And like Nujood, she is ten. Her parents make a mistake. They yield to Margaret’s insistence that she be allowed to go with the exotic nuns, who pluck Inuit children from remote villages to educate them far away in harsh boarding schools for native children. Margaret will be gone an entire school year. The humiliations and emotional abuse she experiences, both from the staff and other students, along with her strong spirit that carries her through, are a journey similar to Nujood’s. Her book is FATTY LEGS. It is illustrated by Liz Amini-Holmes. And it is expertly told by Christy Jordan-Fenton.
Social Responsibilities Round Table , of the American Library Association.
FOUR RESOURCES of DEPTH
KIDLIT Celebrates Women’s History Month. This link connects to a lively post-a-day blog, hosted by two librarians. It only occurs in March. It’s a treasure to bookmark, to pass along & to return to online. I learned about it last year when it debuted. So happy to welcome the KIDLIT team back.