Fifty-two inspiring and insightful profiles of history’s brightest female scientists.

In 2013, the New York Times published an obituary for Yvonne Brill. It began: “She made a mean beef stroganoff, followed her husband from job to job, and took eight years off from work to raise three children.” It wasn’t until the second paragraph that readers discovered why the Times had devoted several hundred words to her life: Brill was a brilliant rocket scientist who invented a propulsion system to keep communications satellites in orbit, and had recently been awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. Among the questions the obituary—and consequent outcry—prompted were, Who are the role models for today’s female scientists, and where can we find the stories that cast them in their true light?      

Headstrong delivers a powerful, global, and engaging response. Covering Nobel Prize winners and major innovators, as well as lesser-known but hugely significant scientists who influence our every day, Rachel Swaby’s vibrant profiles span centuries of courageous thinkers and illustrate how each one’s ideas developed, from their first moment of scientific engagement through the research and discovery for which they’re best known. This fascinating tour reveals these 52 women at their best—while encouraging and inspiring a new generation of girls to put on their lab coats.

If you have been following my blog at all you know I love books and I greatly enjoy reviewing them. It has been a little while though, since I have read a book that I couldn’t put down. So I knew when I saw Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science and the World. I jumped at the opportunity to get a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

I absolutely adored this book. It is an inspiring, uplifting and enjoyable read for a feminist like me. I hope to pass this book on to future generations of young women. As a child , my hero was Eugenie Clark, a female scientist who was the first women inducted into the Jacque Custoe Society.  I would have loved to read about more amazing female scientists. I recommend this to any girl who has an interest in women’s studies or science.