#WomenReadWomen2019 Books Early Readers Features Genre Lifespan of a Reader Non-fiction Wednesday Nonfiction Picture Books Reading Themes Warrior Women and Social Justice

[Nonfiction Wednesday] The Unstoppable Mathematician Sophie Germain

"Nothing Stopped Sophie" by Bardoe and McClintock

Myra here.

We are delighted to join the Nonfiction Picture Book meme 2019 hosted by Alyson Beecher @ Kid Lit Frenzy. We would also be linking our nonfiction choices with our reading themes throughout the year, when we can.

I love how our current reading theme is leading me to know unstoppable females who owned their skills and talents and by so doing, tamed the universe.


Nothing Stopped Sophie: The Story Of Unshakable Mathematician Sophie Germain

Written by Cheryl Bardoe Illustrated by Barbara McClintock
Published by Little Brown and Company (2018).
ISBN: 0316394289 (ISBN13: 9780316394284)
Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.

Telling Sophie not to think about math was like telling a bird not to soar.

How often can people actually claim that they have fallen in love with a discipline such that they live and breathe it? Sophie Germain had that love affair with mathematics, at a time when women were perceived to be too feeble-minded, weak, and simply incapable of grasping its complicated concepts.

I was especially taken by how her parents eventually just gave up when they realized that Sophie would continue doing her reading and research and maths calculations even if they take away her candle, warm dresses, and lighting fires. She would find a way, regardless.

I also loved how studying and books served as a kind of refuge for Sophie at a time when her entire world was falling apart. Math still made sense even while bombs were exploding around her city.

This book is a powerful reminder of how far society’s perceptions on women have evolved, and how much work we still need to do to change prevailing misconceptions and unfounded assumptions about women and exactly what they are capable of.

This is a must-read and a must-find. Young children need to know who Sophie Germain was. Teachers would be happy to note that the Author and Illustrator’s Note are fascinating reads as well; selected bibliography and suggested activities are likewise included in the Afterword.


#WomenReadWomen2019: Country – United States of America

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3 comments on “[Nonfiction Wednesday] The Unstoppable Mathematician Sophie Germain

  1. lindabaie

    I know of this book, but still haven’t been able to read it, Myra. You’ve made me want to read it even more! There is so much still to be done to help women’s rights. I thought it was over way back in the sixties, but clearly, it is not. Thanks for the great review!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve seen this around but haven’t read it yet. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. annettepimentel

    Love this book!

    Liked by 1 person

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