REVIEW: Girl Squads, Sam Maggs

Monday, 7 January 2019

A modern girl is nothing without her squad of besties. But don't let all the hashtags fool you: the #girlsquad goes back a long, long time. In this hilarious and heartfelt book, geek girl Sam Maggs takes you on a tour of some of history's most famous female BFFs, including: Anne Bonny and Mary Read, the infamous lady pirates who sailed the seven seas and plundered with the best of the men; Jeanne Manon Roland and Sophie Grandchamp, Parisian socialites who landed front-row seats (from prison) to the French Revolution; Sharon and Shirley Firth, the First Nations twin sisters who would go on to become Olympic skiers and break barriers in the sport; The Edinburgh Seven, the band of pals who fought to become the first women admitted to medical school in the United Kingdom; The Zohra Orchestra, the ensemble from Afghanistan who defied laws, danger, and threats to become the nation's first all-female musical group; And many more! Spanning art, science, politics, activism, and even sports, these girl squads show just how essential female friendship has been throughout history and throughout the world.

2018 marked one-hundred years since some women were allowed the ability to vote in the United Kingdom. That means that, last year (as well as the beginning of this one) the market has been inundated with books that celebrate kick-arse women throughout the ages. Which is great.
Girl power? I am all for it.
But, unfortunately, it is 2019 now. Which means I have read a year worth of books that commemorate the same one-hundred-or-so historical women and I am beginning to experience some sort of genre-fatigue.
This means that Girl Squads has more than likely been allocated a lower rating than it would have been if the book had been released early in 2018. I have read a whole range of absolutely gorgeous, love-filled books on the subject of historic women and, to stand out in the market this late in the trend, the book has to be pretty special and Girl Squads should have done. I mean, with its illustrations and focus on female friendships, it managed to still hold my attention and some of the stories were truly fascinating (the Korean Haenyeo divers were absolutely amazing and truly a highlight of the collection), but overall? I couldn't bring myself to rate it any higher than the average in this truly saturated market.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Head on over to for this book, as well as all of the others featured in my reviews, complete with the added bonuses of free worldwide shipping and bringing a little joy to my life.

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