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Wonder Women by Sam Maggs | BAMF Women Everywhere!

Friday, September 30, 2016 Geraldine 0 Comments

The Breakdown

General Info:
     Title: Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors, and Trailblazers Who Changed History
     Author: Sam Maggs
     Genre: Non-fiction, STEM, Women
     Publisher: Quirk Books
     Publishing Date: October 4th, 2016

          - Lots of women I had never heard of
          - Could learn things whilst enjoying myself

    Things that could have been better:
         - Writing style was offputting 

Rating: 3.5 stars
Goodreads | Amazon | Quirk Books website

Initial Thoughts

As a BSc university student, and a future M.D. student, I was really excited when Quirk Books contacted me to review Wonder Women. I'm a strong advocate for women in science, being one myself, so I was really excited to dive into this book. Plus, the gorgeous graphics!! 
A side note before I continue - I've omitted the Plot section of this review, because it's a non-fiction book, and hence I can't really comment about plot, because there would be no plot! 

Ever heard of Allied spy Noor Inayat Khan, a Muslim woman whom the Nazis considered “highly dangerous”? Or German painter and entomologist Maria Sibylla Merian, who planned and embarked on the world’s first scientific expedition? How about Huang Daopo, the inventor who fled an abusive child marriage only to revolutionize textile production in China? 

Women have always been able to change the world, even when they didn’t get the credit. In Wonder Women, author Sam Maggs introduces you to pioneering female scientists, engineers, mathematicians, adventurers, and inventors—each profile a study in passion, smarts, and stickto-itiveness, complete with portraits by Google doodler Sophia Foster-Dimino, an extensive bibliography, and a guide to present-day women-centric STEM organizations.


Wonder Women is filled with a plethora of successful, but unheard of women, in a variety of fields, such as science, medicine, espionage, exploration and invention. 
Have you ever heard of Wang Zhenyi? Noor Inayat Khan? What about Maria Sibylla Merian? I know I hadn't, before I read this book!

I honestly thought I would know more of the women here, doing a BSc degree and all. After all, some of the most inspiring lecturers I have had, have always given lectures about some important people in science - for example Maud Menten is known for her work in Michaelis-Menten kinetics, and I learned a bit about her in university. But she doesn't appear here. So it was just really refreshing to hear about more women in different areas, apart from science. 

Writing Style

I was really put off by Maggs's writing style. It seems like a combination of both first and second person, which definitely made it feel like she was talking to me, the reader. But at the same time, the use of italics, parentheses and other textual manipulations was off-putting, as it felt condescending at times. As Briana @ Pages Unbound stated in her review, there is a Tumblr-feel to the writing style. 

For me, the writing style felt condescending to my age and my knowledge. I feel like younger audiences might find the writing style entertaining, witty and sarcastic, but for me, it just felt very condescending. 

There is just a discrepancy with the writing style and the target audience - I believe that the target audience are teenage girls, but it felt like my ten-year old sister would enjoy it more than I did, with regards to the tone throughout the novel. 

Entertainment Value

Wonder Women is a fascinating book that has the capability to make a change, to increase awareness of many women who have impacted the world in a huge way. In that way, it filled my time meaningfully - I learned so many new things about BAMF women, whilst enjoying myself. 

Final Thoughts

Wonder Women is an empowering book for any girl considering to go into STEM related fields. With the large variety of women, from all different backgrounds, profiled here, I'm sure any girl can find a role model within this book! Sadly for me though, the tone and the writing style just didn't appeal to me. 

But...if you want to get in early on reading this gorgeous book, you can sign up for a preorder here! If you preorder it, you'll get exclusive access to some downloadable wallpapers, created by comic artists Jen Bartel and Paulina Ganucheau, as a bonus. Also, two lucky winners will be given a framed print signed by the artists and Sam Maggs, the author. 


Thoughts in a Phrase 

The content was great - delivery, not so much. 

Keep reading and loving books!

Disclaimer - Quirk Books sent me a copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review

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