#WomenReadWomen2019 Books Early Readers Features Genre Lifespan of a Reader Middle Grade Non-fiction Wednesday Nonfiction Picture Books Reading Themes Witches and Goddesses Dryads and Priestesses

[Nonfiction Wednesday] The Sorcery Of Cowgirls

"Rebel In A Dress: Cowgirls" by Sylvia Branzei and Melissa Sweet.

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.

While once again, these women are not really witches and goddesses – they are astounding at what they do, captivating local and international audiences alike with their skills.


Rebel In A Dress: Cowgirls

(Amazon | Book Depository)

Written by Sylvia Branzei Illustrated by Melissa Sweet
Published by Running Press Kids (2011)
ISBN: 0762436956 (ISBN13: 9780762436958)
Bought my own copy of the book. Book photos taken by me.

Similar to last week’s sharing, this Rebel In A Dress series by Sylvia Branzei and Melissa Sweet features 12 intrepid women whom they called cowgirls, in contrast to last week’s group of females who are identified to be adventurers. This is how the book creators defined cowgirls:

Some of the women here are pretty familiar to me, such as Annie Oakley, renowned sharpshooter:

There were a few names that intrigued me, particularly Lilian Riggs who lost her sight at the age of 54. Her fierce independence was what made her take the leadership in their cattle and guest ranch business and she continued on ranching until the age of 70.

Then there is also the astounding Charley Parkhurst who lived her entire life pretending to be a man. Her true identity was only revealed in her death, even to the people closest to her:

The narrative was very engaging, fast-paced, and with a genuine desire to not just inform but to enthuse the reader to finding out more. My issues with the book remain the same as that of the previous book: the random fillers that are largely disconnected from the narrative, detracting from its cohesiveness. There was also the presentation of the cowboys, or in this case cowgirls, versus Native Americans (depicting the Native Americans to be the antagonist in the vignettes) that I found particularly disturbing, and worth taking a closer look with a more critical eye. Other than that, Melissa Sweet’s art is lovely as per usual.


#WomenReadWomen2019: United States of America

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Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

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