My favorite saying for my 8 year old daughter is “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.” However, after reading the brilliant Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, I may need to change this to, "be a rebel."
The next time you decide to buy a book for a girl, or boy for that matter, I urge you to make it this one. Authors Francesca Cavallo and Elena Favilli have created something truly inspiring, using real life heroines to deliver their message – Dream Bigger, Aim Higher, Fight Harder.
These two authors had a vision, launched a crowdfunding campaign to help deliver on it, and it seems the world agreed with their plan. Raising a record-breaking figure of over one million dollars (US) and then becoming a best seller, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls has us asking “What if.”
What if instead of dreaming to marry a prince, she became the queen and ran her own kingdom (Elizabeth I), or What if she had the courage to evade those trying to stop her and became a journalist brave enough to tell the truth (Anna Politkovskaya). What if she dreamt about creating computer code or becoming a presidential candidate – this book will move anyone to have such aspirations.
From the history books to current day we receive a one-page biography on 100 tenacious women from around the world. From activist Rosa Parks to gymnast Simone Biles, or my daughter’s favorite, aviator Amelia Earheart, this book is a great page-turner. Each heroine features a fitting illustration and a quote to sum up her extraordinary approach to life, such as Rita Levi Montalcini who received a Nobel Prize for Medicine, “Above all, don’t fear difficult moments. The best comes from them.”
This book is ideal for pre-teens all the way through to adulthood to read, revisit and most of all seek inspiration from when life gets tough – so it’s a good thing it’s a hardcover to last the distance. Read it to your girls, and teach your boys what women are capable of when encouraged, trusted and treated equal. The most positive aspect is that all children will identify with at least one (if not, many) of these heroic women. It covers a diverse range of backgrounds and talents, battles stereotypes and will have anyone wanting to choose a path that makes the world a better place - by being inspired and most of all, by inspiring those around them.
So yes, be kind, but also be brave enough to rebel against prejudices that would stop you from reaching your greatest potential.