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They had the right stuff. They defied the prejudices of the time. And they blazed a trail for generations of women to follow.
What does it take to be an astronaut? Excellence at flying, courage, intelligence, resistance to stress, top physical shape — any checklist would include these. But when America created NASA in 1958, there was another unspoken rule: you had to be a man. Here is the tale of thirteen women who proved that they were not only as tough as the toughest man but also brave enough to challenge the government. They were blocked by prejudice, jealousy, and the scrawled note of one of the most powerful men in Washington. But even though the Mercury 13 women did not make it into space, they did not lose, for their example empowered young women to take their place in the sky, piloting jets and commanding space capsules. Almost Astronautsis the story of thirteen true pioneers of the space age. Back matter includes an author’s note, an appendix, further reading, a bibliography, sources, source notes, and an index.
About the Author
Tanya Lee Stone is a former editor and award-winning author who often writes about strong women. She has garnered starred reviews and other accolades for books such as Up Close: Ella Fitzgerald and the highly popular Amelia Earhart. She lives in Vermont. Attending Texas Book Festival in November 08.
Stone presents the full story of early-sixties public discourse about women’s capabilities and clearly shows the personal, political, and physical risks taken by the women in pursuit of their dream.
—The Horn Book (starred review)
Readers with an interest in history and in women's struggle for equality will undoubtedly be moved.
This passionately written account of a classic but little-known challenge to established gender prejudices also introduces readers to a select group of courageous, independent women.
—School Library Journal (starred review)