Book Review: No Stopping Us Now by Lucy Jane Bledsoe
When I’m reviewing books for professional publications, I stay quiet about them on social media. I’m always really excited once a review comes out to be able to talk about the book, finally! Here’s one of my most recent reviews, which originally appeared in an issue of School Library Journal.
Three Rooms Pr. Apr. 2022. 288p. pap. $14.99. ISBN 9781953103208.
Gr 9 Up–A teenage girl demands a fair shot when she challenges her Portland, OR, school to come into compliance with Title IX. Set in 1974, two years after Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, 17-year-old Louisa, who is white, isn’t satisfied with just playing basketball in the city rec league. Inspired by sharing the stage with Gloria Steinem and meeting other feminists, Louisa petitions her school to add a girls’ basketball program, firing up people on both sides of the debate. Opposition abounds and as she fights for this opportunity, the story gets taken from her, twisted and censored. It’s almost enough to make her give up. The rocky road to progress comes with lessons about speaking truth to power and focuses on the importance of sisterhood. Louisa is also dealing with the growing distance with her best friend, her grandfather’s dementia, and her potential attraction to a Black teammate, Barb. This autobiographical novel, with richly developed bold, courageous characters, and raw emotion, deftly captures the period of transition, not just for Louisa but for women’s rights in the 1970s. Tired of being benched, and finding power in activism, community, and herself, Louisa finds the strength to demand equality and to live the life she wants, while making an important contribution to the history of sports for girls and women.
VERDICT An inspiring look at the early days of Title IX and a solid addition to historical fiction collections.
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About Amanda MacGregor
Amanda MacGregor works in an elementary library, loves dogs, and can be found on Twitter @CiteSomething.
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