A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Brief biographies include why and how 25 young women and girls are activists fighting the climate crisis and a range of other social justice issues, and explains how the changing climate is itself a social-justice issue. Many include explanations of problems like why coral reefs are dying out or what the three types of water are and how gray water can be used. Some advanced vocabulary words are defined or explained. A list at the end provides web sites and books for further exploration.
Each story has positive messages specific to the person, like not being defined by disability, don't be afraid to speak your mind, that humans are connected to all living things, etc. Overall takeaways include that people of color are the most vulnerable to the climate crisis, making changes happen can be really hard work, but it's ultimately worth it and rewarding; sometimes even a small act on your part, like writing a letter or talking directly to a person in power, can have a big impact; teamwork and networking are very important; and the hopefulness from knowing that so many young people around the world are working so hard for their own futures and the wellbeing of all living things.
Positive Role Models
Biography subjects are widely diverse by age, ability, race, ethnicity, country of origin, and country where they live now. Each is a positive role model for learning about a problem and taking action to help fix it. Common traits among them include curiosity, perseverance, determination, organization, self-discipline, understanding how different issues and problems are connected, and teamwork.
Violence & Scariness
Some scariness when subjects talk about how people in power are not only killing Earth but every living being on it, and that humans are an endangered species.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Rachel Sarah's Girl Warriors: How 25 Young Activists Are Saving the Earth is a collection of short biographies of young women and girls, all under 25 years old, who are taking action against climate change and other social justice issues. It may inspire many readers to take action themselves. Some strong statements like killing the Earth and every living thing on it, or that humans are an endangered species, may provoke fear and anxiety in some readers. Many of the subjects talk about their own fears or anxiety disorders and how activism has helped them cope. The overall takeaway is hopeful, and there are lots of positive messages from a very diverse group that highlight curiosity, determination, and teamwork. The author once worked for Common Sense Media and later became a freelance book reviewer.
Is It Any Good?
This is a very informative collection of short biographies that inspires admiration for the young women subjects, and may well inspire some readers to take action themselves. Girl Warriors: How 25 Young Activists Are Saving the Earth does a good job not only of telling each subject's story, but of clearly explaining the issues they're taking on as well as what the impact or benefits are of their work and solutions. The format is very straightforward, so readers who are most inspired by colorful visuals may want to take it one story at a time, which is a good option since the stories aren't in any particular order.
Some of the common themes and threads that run through each story can seem repetitive when reading straight through. It's best enjoyed skipping around, reading one or two at a time guided by the reader's own curiosity. Websites and books listed at the end encourage further exploration for curious readers. It's a great resource and starting point for kids, especially girls, who want to know more about the climate crisis and social justice, and who could benefit from such inspirational stories.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.