My Review: 4 Stars
That's What She Said is a lovely addition to any coffee table. The book highlights more than 50 women, pairing a watercolor illustration with a quote and then a brief bio of their life and accomplishments. The illustrations are beautiful and many of the quotes, even if they were familiar, stopped me in my tracks.
What I found most interesting was the description of each woman. I was familiar with most of the women selected but I found I still learned new and interesting facts, like how Amelia Earhart started her own fashion line, including separates, which is now an imperative for any woman's wardrobe.
This is a quality book. I loved how it was laid out. In terms of the actual content, it's a 5 star book. However, I had a few questions along the lines of representation and intersectionality.
There's a good array of diversity for race, religion, sexuality, and ability but this is still a collection of overwhelmingly white straight able-bodied women. I would have loved if there had been better representation of Native, trans, and disabled women, as there was only one woman for each of those backgrounds.
I wish the author had gone into more detail about her selection process. Of course, we would all come up with different lists of notable women but I want to hear more about the thinking behind it. I'm also uncertain about the inclusion of Emmeline Pankhurst and think there needs to be better discussion when white suffragists are included in any such list as they were not always (or ever) welcoming to Women of Color and typically did not include them in their cause. But one more illustration of why intersectionality is so important when we talk about feminism.
It's a quick read but what an affirming one to see so many women celebrated and championed. I'll display it in my home with pride.
Head to my Instagram to see more photos.
An artist and activist committed to the empowerment of women and girls has created a gorgeous illustrated volume, blending watercolor and short biography to showcase the contributions of more than fifty influential female leaders whose words and actions are a passionate call to arms.
Distraught by the results of the 2016 election and the realization that the nation was not ready for its first female president, Kimothy Joy found herself poring over the biographies of brave women throughout history—those who persisted in the face of daunting circumstances—to learn from their experiences.
Turning to art, Joy channeled her feelings to the canvas, bringing these strong women to life in bold watercolor portraits surrounded by inspirational hand-lettered quotes. With each creation, Joy found catharsis and hope. She shared her watercolors with her online community and encouraged everyone to raise their own voices and recharge for the battles ahead.
Now, in this beautiful gift book, Joy has gathered her stunning illustrations and quotes and paired them with surprising, illuminating biographies of her subjects to inspire women of all ages, races, and backgrounds. That’s What She Said honors a powerful and diverse group of over fifty women—from Maya Angelou, Gloria Steinem, and Virginia Woolf to Sojourner Truth, Malala Yousafzai, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg—role models whose words and insights remind us that we must never give up the fight for a more just and equitable society.
Reclaiming the derogatory cultural barb "that’s what she said," this stunning book celebrates strong female leadership throughout history and empowers current and future generations to find their voices and inspire change in their communities.
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Disclosure: I received an advance copy of this book from TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. Affiliate links included in this post.