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Saturday, December 21, 2013

Review: Women of Steel and Stone: 22 Inspirational Architects, Engineers, and Landscape Designers by Anna M. Lewis

Title: Women of Steel and Stone: 22 Inspirational Architects, Engineers, and Landscape Designers
Author: Anna M. Lewis
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Chicago Review Press
Publish Date: January 1, 2014
Source: I received a copy from the publisher; however, this did not affect my review.

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You're a non-fiction fan.
  • You want to be inspired!
What's the Story?:

From "Reporting on a range of historical and contemporary female builders and designers, this educational book strives to inspire a new generation of girls in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and math. With many of the profiles set against the backdrop of such landmark events as the women’s suffrage and civil rights movements and the Industrial Revolution, and with original interviews from a number of current architects and engineers, this book provides inspiration and advice directly to young women by highlighting positive examples of how a strong work ethic, perseverance, and creativity can overcome life’s obstacles. Each profile focuses on the strengths, passions, and interests each woman had growing up; where those traits took them; and what they achieved. Sidebars on related topics, source notes, and a bibliography make this an invaluable resource for further study."

My Two Cents:

Architecture and engineering are both extremely fascinating fields to me. "Women of Steel and Stone" is made up of mini biographies of some females that have had a huge impact in the fields of architecture, engineering, and landscape architecture. This book definitely whetted my appetite to learn more about these amazing women.

While women have been involved in architecture and enginneering for a long time (there was actually a woman included in the first 12 architects to take an official licensing exam in the United States), these fields have often been seen as a man's world and women have really had to fight in order to be included and to be successful in those fields. This book recounts their struggles and their successes. I really enjoyed reading about these women.

There were a couple architects and engineers that I recognized in this book but many more that were brand new to me. They were all super successful but many of them remain the unsung heroes of these fields. I especially enjoyed reading about some of the women who worked and contributed to their fields when many women did not work at all. I can only imagine how hard it must have been for these women to shake off what was expected of them and to go into these fields, which were not all that welcoming to women in the first place.

As I said, I would love to read more about many of these women. One very nice feature of this book is that the author includes a little biography to tell you where to find more information on these women and their careers. I enjoyed this book overall!



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