Standing On Her Shoulders


When we seek to inspire young people, it is important to consider the people around them. Young girls could look first to their mothers, who are with them ‘even when they are apart’. Yet further, from Kamala Harris to Hillary Clinton, or women closer to home such as Mary Cassatt, we realise, we are Standing On Her Shoulders.

Monica Clark- Robinson’s text is a stirring, lyrical chant of encouragement and inspiration. She charts the equality seekers and freedom fighters, who face up to adversity and challenge with determination. Thereafter, she offers mini biographies at the conclusion of this non-fiction picture book, of some of her inspirations. Meanwhile, every one is painted magnificently by Laura Freeman.

Standing On Her Shoulders takes the form of sharing the histories to a new generation, so that it seems to be passing on a mantle of knowledge and responsibility.

This book made me want to know more about the people included in the story’s honour board, but also to add the many others whom I respect and admire. Standing On Her Shoulders is a magnificent picture book to be treasured, shared and known.

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Standing On Her Shoulders

A Celebration of Women

Monica Clark-Robinson, art by Laura Freeman

(Scholastic)- hardback

When we consider the generations of women who have forged lives of sacrifice, discovery and change, we realise we are Standing On Her Shoulders.
It might be the shoulders of the one who ‘mothers you‘, who is with you, ‘even when you are apart’. Then there are the ‘freedom seekers, truth speakers, fierce women, brave and wise’. Furthermore, there are the ‘warriors in the fight‘ who believe ‘in a day when women would have a say’. Monica Clark-Robinson’s words inspire. Thereafter, she seems to spark something in us in that we want to discover more about the women who seem to have inspired her, other women and then this picture book. For example, Frida Kahlo, who is picture amongst the walls of giants.
Alongside stirring, lyrical words of truth, recognition and history from Monica Clark-Robinson, Laura Freeman’s painted illustrative portraits, give voice to many we recognise, alongside others who may be new to us. Art such as this elevates the strength of purpose and message, as we’ve seen in such striking picture books as The Undefeated.
These ‘champions of equality’ amongst other things, merit this sterling, glorious recognition. Furthermore, at its conclusion, this proud call to new generations of women, offers a photo call of women who are celebrated. These include botanist Ynes Mexica, Maya Angelou, Megan Rapinoe, Little Frida and Mary Cassatt. It is a rich, curious and wonderful range.
Bookwagon loves and recommends Standing On Her Shoulders. 


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