Title: The Big Book of Girl Power
Author: Julie Merberg
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Publisher: Downtown Bookworks
Review Spoilers: N/A
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Who says comics aren’t for girls? The Big Book of Girl Power is a primer for budding DC fans who want to learn more about their favorite characters — and meet a few new ones, too! Part of Downtown Bookworks’ girl power-focused line of books, The Big Book of Girl Power appeals to readers who are too old for their My First Book of Girl Power board book but not quite ready to jump right into an on-going DC Comics series.
The Big Book of Girl Power features nearly a dozen different DC Comics superheroines. Most of the characters get a single two-page spread but the more popular, well-known characters (namely Wonder Woman, Supergirl, and Batgirl) get a little more attention.
Each character gets a short biography that outlines their character’s backstory as well as their superpowers and skills. Obviously some of the stories need to be appropriately modified for younger readers while others have to be condensed due to decades worth of history. But each character’s spread gives young readers a brief introduction to characters that they will undoubtedly want to learn more about as they grow.
The descriptions are tailored towards the book’s message of female empowerment. Many of the characters’ are tied to male figures as part of their backstory. Superman is mentioned only once in Supergirl’s section and Batman isn’t even mentioned at all in Batgirl’s — though the classic Bat Family batarang gets a shout out.
Instead the descriptions focus a lot on the characters’ different abilities and unique skills.
Intelligence, determination, and hard work are heavily emphasized in an attempt to show young girls that being smart, technologically savvy, and brave are not just admirable qualities but ones that they can strive toward as well. They are praised for their special talents and their personal achievements are highlighted in a way that celebrate their accomplishments. And while some heroes may have superpowers it’s not the powers that necessarily matter but what they do with them. They are often shown helping others in ways that may inspire young readers to help their communities in their own special way.
It’s an incredibly positive, pro-girl power read every way you look at it. As far as a primer for DC Comics characters it may simplify things a little bit but when you think about the target audience it makes sense.
The Big Book of Girl Power is the perfect way for older fans of DC Comics to share their love with the young readers in their lives. Whether your trying to convert your daughters, nieces, or friends’ kids to comics, this book is a great way to introduce a wide variety of characters with all kinds of powers, abilities, and talents. It’s just a bonus that the book does so in a way that not just acknowledges but celebrates these awesome female characters and their amazing achievements!