Anne here, reporting on what some of the wenches have been reading during the month of February. I say "some of the wenches" because several of us are storming towards an imminent deadline. And this month we have a lovely mixed bag for you — non-fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, alternate reality, historical and contemporaries.
We start with Andrea/Cara.
This month my reading has been about heroines, though in very different contexts . . . First off, was Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly, the inspiring story of the Black women mathematicians who played such a critical—yet unsung—part in not only the U.S. Mercury and Apollo Space programs, but also in the aeronautic innovations that helped win WWII. It’s a truly amazing panorama, with heartwarming (and heartbreaking) stories of the individual women who faced the dual prejudices of race and gender but ultimately triumphed in pursuing their dreams of fulfilling their remarkable talents through courage, grace, grit and the sheer force of their brilliance.
But it’s not simply a story of brilliant women. The author paints an eye-opening portrait of segregation in the South, and how the black communities banded together to create a whole network of opportunities in business and education which allowed them to excel and achieve despite all the obstacles in their way. It’s one of the most moving books I’ve read in a long time. It ought to be required reading in schools, for it tells a story in American history that’s been hidden for far too long. (The movie is wonderful, too—I highly recommend it!)