Our Friends' Favorites: Books with Great Female Characters
If you're reading this blog, chances are you care about finding great media for your kids and that you want to spread the word about books, movies, and other media that you love. That's why we're launching a new feature on the blog: Our Friends' Favorites, featuring recommendations from Common Sense Media's friends and partners.
The theme for this summer is books that celebrate strong, realistic girls and women, and the first pick comes from filmmaker/women's advocate Jennifer Siebel Newsom. Jennifer is the writer, director, and producer of the 2011 Sundance documentary film Miss Representation and the founder and CEO of MissRepresentation.org, a social action campaign and media organization established to help women and girls realize their full potential. (Check out the media literacy resources we developed with MissRepresentation.org here.) Here's what she has to say about her choice, Soar, Elinor!, by Tami Lewis Brown:
"Soar, Elinor! is my choice for a number of reasons. First, this book is a slice of history that isn't known to the average child or adult. Second, this story can empower girls to pursue their dreams while encouraging boys to respect girls and women and see them as their equals. Elinor Smith, at 17 years of age, was the youngest licensed pilot in the United States, male or female, and earned the respect of famous pilots like Charles Lindbergh. Soar, Elinor! is the wonderfully illustrated story of Smith's courageous feat of flying under all four of New York City's East River bridges nearly a century ago, capturing the boldness and spirit of her most famous moment beautifully."
What do you think? Share your thoughts on Soar, Elinor! -- or other suggestions for books with positive female role models -- in the comments below. To thank you for your participation, we'll send one of you a book of your choosing from our Essential Books for Kids and Teens guide. We'll email you on Monday, July 1, by 2 p.m. PDT if you've won! (And remember, we don't send emails to kids under 13!)
We look forward to hearing from you. Together, we can help our kids learn that there's more to a woman than her body and looks and improve the media landscape for our kids with healthy depictions of girls and women.