As Sally Ride and Marian Wright Edelman both powerfully said, “You can’t be what you can’t see.” When Sally Ride said that, she meant that it was hard to dream of being an astronaut, like she was, or a doctor or an athlete or anything at all if you didn’t see someone like you who already had lived that dream. She especially was talking about seeing women in jobs that historically were held by men.
I wrote the first She Persisted
and the books that came after it because I wanted young girls—and children of all genders—to see women who worked hard to live their dreams. And I wanted all of us to see examples of persistence in the face of different challenges to help inspire us in our own lives.
I’m so thrilled now to partner with a sisterhood of writers to bring longer, more in-depth versions of these stories of women’s persistence and achievement to readers. I hope you enjoy these chapter books as much as I do and find them inspiring and empowering.
And remember: If anyone ever tells you no, if anyone ever says your voice isn’t important or your dreams are too big, remember these women. They persisted and so should you.
Warmly,Chelsea ClintonTABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 1: La candela
Chapter 2: Creciendo y aprendiendo
Chapter 3: Sueños
Chapter 4: En la lucha
Chapter 5: Tentando nuevas vías
Chapter 6: Su legado
How You Can Persist
ReferencesChapter 1La candela
From the very start, Sonia Sotomayor was la candela. Just like a flame, she was warm and burned brightly, but sometimes she was hard to handle. She learned to walk when she was only seven months old. She liked to play knights with her cousins, carrying them into battle on her back. They used mops and brooms to joust. And she had a well-known habit of spying on grown-ups and listening to their conversations whenever she could.
“She is like an ají,” her family said. That is the Spanish word for a hot pepper that can sometimes burn your tongue. Who would have guessed that a girl like Sonia would become the first Latina Supreme Court Justice for the United States?
Copyright © 2021 by Chelsea Clinton. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.