I am a pretty big believer in the power of subliminal encouragement, so I’m never afraid of having my girls reading books that will empower them to be, and believe, and achieve more – whatever ‘more’ might be! I sometimes find myself really excited about something, just to find that they are… okay with it, which is a little disappointing, to say the least, but that was definitely not the case with Girls Can Do Anything by Caryl Hart and Ali Pye.
** I was gifted a copy of this book for an unbiased review. Opinions are my own (or the children’s). This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, you will not be charged extra, but I may make a few pennies for the upkeep of this blog. **
What’s Girls Can Do Anything About?
The answer to that is pretty much in the title. This is a colourful, short book with a powerful and engaging message delivered through bright, bold images and a fun ‘story’ line. The blurb on the back says, “Girls come in all different colours and sizes. They delight and amaze us. They’re full of surprises. Girls can do anything they want to do. And if YOU are a girl… you can do these things too.”
What’s the take away message from Girls Can Do Anything?
Girls can do anything is about having a dream and being able to achieve it. It starts by telling us that all girls aredifferent, and that girls can do anything. They can have any appearance, any character trait, wear anything they choose. They can play any sport, win any medals and be proud of it. They can be smart, and creative and brilliant. They can have jobs with animals, or in more ‘male-oriented’ fields and can be brave or gentle or rough and tough, but most of all, girls can dream big and achieve anything they want to achieve. It’s ‘told’ in a sing-songy, rhyming way, and is really quite special.
One of the things I really appreciate about this book is how diverse the characters are – all shapes and sizes, all abilities, all colours. It’s really inclusively drawn.
What about the pictures?
The artist, Ali Pye, has done an exceptional job on this book. It’s one of those books where you spend more time discussing the different characters than actually reading the story, and it absolutely engages the children. Every page I always have to ‘choose’ my favourite, or which one I’d rather be, or which one I think has the most exciting job. The ‘Mama, what’s your…. ‘ list is never-ending and I think the fact that we see something new every time we read it is a testament to how great the pictures are.
What we say:
Ameli, (age 8) says, “This is my favourite book at the moment. I love the pictures, but I also really love that whenever we read it, I feel excited, like there’s nothing I can dream that I can’t do. I think I want to be an artist when I grow up.”
Aviya, (age 6) says, “I really like it. I think it’s very good, and true.”
I love this book. We have a lot of inspiring women style books, and I do think this is one the girls engage with the most, probably because of the pictures. They spend ages going through the pictures and imagining the lives of each of the girls.They also like identifying things that relate to them – my hair is that colour, I like to do that, I can play that, I can …
It’s a really positive, inspiring message for young girls, and I recommend it highly – and if you want more on that topic for girls, have a look at our Women Who Did series.