Disclaimer: I received Headstrong 52 Women Who Changed Science and the World by Rachel Swaby c/o Blogging for Books

What do Ruth Benerito, Stephanie Kwolek, Sally Ride, Helen Taussig, and the 48 other women featured in Headstrong have in common? These 52 women knew the value of hard work, determination, curiosity, patience, not giving up, and the drive to find out about the what, why, when, where and how of the mysteries of life. They all overcame obstacles, were leaders in their field, and still are inspirational to many.

Headstrong features scientists whose life’s work has already been completed. As the book states, “the idea of women and science is entirely irrelevant. Either a woman is a good scientist or she is not; in any case she should be given opportunities, and her work should be studied from the scientific point of view.”


The women in this book are role models. Everyone needs that person that they look up to. For some it’s the women in this book. For others it’s leaders in their particular field or family members.

As I read Ruth Benerito and Stephanie Kwolek’s story I beamed, because the book was talking about the fashion industry and the science behind it. Benerito saved the cotton industry from collapsing in 1969 and in turn discovered wrinkle-free cotton with numerous others and was later named the Queen of Cotton. Kwolek developed Kevlar which at the time was a new futuristic fabric of incredible lightness and strength. Kevlar is used in various things from apparel to oven gloves to space suits to cellphones to bullet proof vests and more.

My favorite quote from the book:

As Yvonne Brill, Engineering states, be the person, who is always confident that they can fulfill their own high ambitions.

Without a doubt this book receives 5 out of 5 ruby red slippers.

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  • Reply
    Anna Seay
    August 18, 2015 at 8:42 am

    This sounds like a good read, Allison! I’m usually not much of a biography person, but this looks interesting! Thanks for the review. 🙂

    • Reply
      August 18, 2015 at 9:13 am

      It was a really fascinating read, Anna! I learned about so many amazing women who I’d never heard of before… oops!

  • Reply
    For the LoveAllison Ramsing
    August 19, 2015 at 9:07 am

    […] the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards. With all my excitement finishing, Headstrong I completely forgot to hit publish on this post yesterday, oops. So today, I’ll be […]

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