Nomination: Mighty be our powers – a memoir: how sisterhood, prayer and sex changed a nation at war

Gbowee, Leymah, with Carol Mithers.  Mighty be our powers – a memoir: how sisterhood, prayer and sex changed a nation at war. 2011 (Sept). 246p. Beast Books, $25.99. (ISBN 978-0984-295-159). Gr. 11 and up. (mmc)



Nomination: Flesh and blood so cheap: the Triangle Factory Fire and its legacy

Marrin, Albert. Flesh and blood so cheap: the Triangle Factory Fire and its legacy. 2011 (Feb.). 182p. Knopf, $19.99. (ISBN 978-0-375-86889-4). Gr. 5 and up. (mmc)

 Marrin skillfully lays the historical groundwork for the societal developments and economic conditions that made the Triangle Factory Fire, possible. Includes profiles of such notable women as Rose Schneiderman, Triangle Factory worker, union activist and community organizer, and Francis Perkins, future Secretary of Labor, charged by New York’s governor to conduct a groundbreaking investigation of state factory worker health and safety, in the aftermath of the tragedy. (mmc)

Nomination: Women of today : contemporary Issues and conflicts – 1980-present

Stearman, Kaye and Patience Coster. Women of today : contemporary issues and conflicts – 1980-present. 2011 (May). 64p. Chelsea House, $35.00 (ISBN 978-1-60413-936-5). Gr. 5-8. (mmc)

  The last three decades have seen women make remarkable achievements in many professions and fields of endeavor. This volume chronicles recent social shifts. profiles notable women in science, sports, the arts, politics and business, and acknowledges that, despite advances, many women still face significant inequalities and challenges, including ageism in the workplace, and achieving a work-life balance. (mmc)

Nomination: Hush

Chayil, Eishes.  Hush. 2010 (Sept.). 359 p. Walker, $16.99. (ISBN 978-0-8027-2088-7). Gr. 11 and up.

 Young Gittel’s close-knit ultra-Orthodox community in Borough Park, Brooklyn is comforting. Traditional. Safe. Or so she thinks. When she witnesses a horrific act of violence against her best friend Devory, she is frightened and confused but she keeps silent, unwilling to face her fears. Devory’s suicide is a shock, but her death is quickly “forgotten” and the community appears to move forward. For Gittel, however, Devory’s death causes unspeakable pain, which she keeps secret for years, until she can no longer keep silent. Can she find the courage to speak up for her friend?  More importantly, will her traditional community finally listen? (mmc)

Nomination: Shannen and the dream for a school

Wilson, Janet.  Shannen and the dream for a school. 2011 (Sept.). 208p.  Second Story Press, $14.95. (ISBN 978-1-926920-30-6). Gr. 4-8. (mmc)

When a toxic waste spill forces the closure of her school, 12 year old Shannen Koostachin and the other children in her community must attend classes in leaky, drafty, crowded portable classrooms.  Living in isolated Attawapiskat First Nation, a small Native community in northern Ontario, Canada, Shannen’s people are used to taking care of themselves.  But when Shannen hears that the Canadian government has backed out of a promise to build a new school, she and her friends launch an awareness campaign that mobilizes Attawapiskat, other Aboriginal communities and people across Canada.  Arguing that their children are entitled to the same education and facilities as other Canadian children, their campaign inspires a new generation of community activists and succeeds in holding the government to its promise. (mmc)

Nomination: The Dressmaker of Khair Khana

Lemmon, Gayle Tzemach.  The dressmaker of Khair Khana: five sisters, one remarkable family, and the woman who risked everything to keep them safe. 2011. 256 p. HarperCollins, $24.99. (978-0-06-173237-9). Gr. 7 and up. (mmc)

 When the Taliban take control of Kabul, Afghanistan, life for the city’s people – especially its women – changes overnight.  Separated from her parents, young Kamila Sidiqi becomes the sole wage-earner for her family.  Relying on her creativity and ingenuity, she starts a home-based dress-making business that gradually becomes an economic pillar for her neighborhood of Khair Khana.  Kamila’s business becomes a school as well,  training and employing local girls, and her courage and ingenuity help transform Kamila into an entrepreneur and community leader.