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Bygone Badass Broads: 52 Forgotten Women Who Changed the World

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  2,736 ratings  ·  632 reviews
Based on Mackenzi Lee’s popular weekly Twitter series of the same name, Bygone Badass Broads features 52 remarkable and forgotten trailblazing women from all over the world. With tales of heroism and cunning, in-depth bios and witty storytelling, Bygone Badass Broads gives new life to these historic female pioneers. Starting in the fifth century BC and continuing to the pr ...more
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published February 27th 2018 by Harry N. Abrams
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 ·  2,736 ratings  ·  632 reviews

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Amalia Gavea
‘’They span time, the globe, socioeconomic situations, sexual and gender identities, and races. They are queens, scientists, athletes, politicians, spies, warriors, peacemakers, criminals and scoundrels. They are trendsetters, barrier breakers, innovators, and rebels.’’

Outstanding, brilliantly beautiful work by Mackenzi Lee. I cannot begin to tell you how much I loved this book in which she presents 52 women who deserve to be much more famous than they are. Women from all over the world, wom
Mar 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Though I was struggling a bit at the start of this book with the super casual language used for chronicling each historic woman, I realized (rather quickly, thankfully!) that the modern take on these badass broads is exactly what makes this read that more approachable and original.

My issue with previous feminist collections always stemmed from the fact that they came to read like Wikipedia-esque entries and as a result failed to keep me engaged. Which is why I came to like the shorter biography
I have read books like this one, and this was not my favorite.

Recently, a whole bunch of Feminist Anthologies Of Badass Women In History have come out. They always have pretty art, and they always try to be funny, and they usually have the same lineup of women with a few newbies in each one.

The first book I read like this was Brazen, which was the f*cking best. The art is beautiful, and the writer is knowledgeable, and it’s all around a meaningful fun aesthetically pleasing empowerment-fest.

April (Aprilius Maximus)
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
*4.5 stars*
Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.
Feb 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If someone ever tells you that you "fight like a girl", you better believe that's a damn compliment. These ladies were fierce. Not just physically, but politically, socially, intellectually. Badass broads indeed. What a great and interesting read.
This is kind of a new experience for me, reading non-fiction books is not really my thing, until NOW.

This is a book comprised of inspiring women throughout history who somehow did not get enough public attention, and to me, it is amazing that this book did its job well, giving the rightful dedication to all these wonderful ladies. They should all be hailed and remembered for their amazing doings throughout history.

And my reaction throughout this book? Might as well be summarized with these two w
Gemma ♕ antari.and.the.books
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
Shelves: lgbtq-rep, tt-reads
This book is fantastic. It was funny, thought provoking, informative and when I finished it I felt fucking empowered.

All these women are awesome in their own right, strong females in every sense of the word. They are fighters, both on battlefields and off. They are trailblazers. They achieved amazing things in their fields often in the face of men telling them to get back in the kitchen.

You know what though? There are some men behind some of these women that are examples of what good men are.
For the most part, I enjoyed this. I hadn't heard of the majority of the women so it was great gaining knowledge for the first time instead of reiterating it. [For example: I personally owe so much to Ursula Nordstrom because without her CHARLOTTE'S WEB wouldn't have existed.) The amount of diversity is wonderful. The artwork is stunningly gorgeous & makes it worth checking out for that alone.

But besides that, I had qualms that kept it from being a 5* read. When I'm reading nonfiction I appreci
May 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2-star
I know this book is basically a published version of Lee's Twitter feed, which I wasn't aware of going in, but it unfortunately reads as about as polished as any Twitter thread. I read this hoping to learn about some brilliant women who impacted history, but Lee's colloquial, pop culture-littered writing style was unbearably distracting.

I think there's a huge difference between lightening the density that can be found in a lot of
nonfiction or history books with jokes and disregarding the histor
Jan 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: feminist, non-fiction
Just imagine if I got to learn about all these amazing women in my high school history class, maybe then I would have actually enjoyed them. It's so sad that all these amazing women are just forgotten. Some saved thousands of lives and some revolutionized science or any other field, and some were just extraordinary at what they did, but time and time again, men have taken credit and/or glory, while these women have gotten lost in history.
Jul 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: bio
I struggle with rating this one because, on the one hand, I really like the idea of it. The 51 women in this volume cover a range of eras and experiences and most definitely deserve the title 'badass.' It is fun to see them all in one place and sort of glory in their combined epicness.
On the other hand, I had a lot of problems with this book, not the least of which is that it just isn't interesting. I forced myself through most of it. Despite (perhaps because of?) the bantering language, it jus
Marta :}
Apr 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
You can read my review on my blog as well (for better formatting, lol) - here
I really loved this book, I especially adored how inclusive it was. If you’re worried that this book might have white feminism plastered all over it, I’m here to ease your worries, it’s very intersectional.

The illustrations were breath-taking and the stories were funny, very girl-power-y and at the end, you really wanted to discover more about those women who had been forgotten.

I think Mackenzi Lee did a great job with
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book absolutely fascinated me - it accounts the incredible lives of a hugely diverse range of women. The art is beautiful and, just as I anticipated, Lee’s writing style is so witty and fun, making these women stand out as characters who I can’t get enough of. Full review to come on my channel soon :)

Thank you to Abrams Books for sending me a copy for review. All opinions are my own.
Sep 01, 2017 marked it as to-read
Shelves: own-books, own-tbr
Oh man I am so ready for this.
Christine Spoors
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've been excited about this book since Lee announced it and it definitely didn't disappoint. I don't ever recall hearing about any of these 52 wonderful women before reading this book, so I learned a lot! I think Lee did a good job at picking women from around the world to write about, it was also great to see gay women and even a transgender woman written about. I really hope that Lee and Abrams bring out a second book of Bygone Badass Broads in the future!

The illustrations by Petra Eriksson w
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: biography, history
This book was so inspiring, and included so many of my fave historical figures and many more that I’ve never heard of. Working in a bookshop means I’ve seen so many of these beautiful new books that highlight the achievements of historical women, and I love the trend, but this has been my favourite so far. Lee makes a point to talk about women who weren’t white/straight/cis because they have been especially forgotten, and reading about them was a joy.
Rachel (Kalanadi)
Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
4.5 stars, feeding my hunger for inspirational women of note in history after Rachel Ignotofsky's Women in Science and Sports books. I docked half a star only because it frankly needed a wee bit more copyediting. But on the whole, lovely and outspokenly anti-patriarchal establishment, exactly what I expected.
Avery (Book Deviant)
full review to come but... sigh.

it was really good, i normally would have given it 4.5 or even 5 stars, if not for the multiple transphobic (& enby phobic) lines that were riddled throughout. it was hard to read because of those lines.

still might lower my rating to 2 stars, i just have to think about it:((
Lady H
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2018
Literally why are there so many films and TV shows about crusty white men when all these women exist?? I mean I always knew women were awesome and that we had of course been part of history, but some of the women in this book are just so unbelievably awesome, particularly for the time in which they lived. Nearly every single woman in this book should have her own TV show. This was such a blast to read.

→ the look ←

Since this is an illustrated coffee-table type book, I have to mention how it looks
The women featured in this book truly did change society and impact feminism. Many of the women in this book are homosexual, one is a transgender woman, many are women of colour, indigenous women, educated women, women from poor economic backgrounds. There is a role model for everyone, whether you aspire to be a dancer, a chef, a teacher, a scientist, or a writer. These women are empowering.

I had not even heard of 49/52 of the women I learned about reading this. Props to the author for that.

Jan 03, 2019 rated it liked it
This book was a great compendium of women from around the world who've made a difference. Like Lee acknowledged in her introduction, "many of the women [she] chose to highlight...[were] morally complex. They are sometimes violent, ruthless, and downright criminal." As a history major, I would have expected to have been familiar with at least some of these women but that wasn't the case. Lee made it more exciting because she highlighted lesser known women that often never made it to the history b ...more
Clem (the villain's quest)
Nov 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 3-stars
theme thief bookclub pick of the month

Rating: 3 stars.

The problem is that I read a lot of non-fiction feminist/LGBTQ+ mini-biographies like this one so I already knew most of the women presented in here, and while I didn't think it was mindblowing, Bygone Badass Broads was still a good (if not great) collection of stories. The writing style is my favorite thing about it, it's funny and perfect for night stories. The pictures are beautiful, and the women chosen are still underrated and unknown to
Meg - A Bookish Affair
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction, 2018
Here's another great pick for Women's History Month: "Bygone Badass Broads." Not only does this book have a fabulous title but it has a great premise. Author Mackenzi Lee started a feature on Twitter to talk about all of these fantastic women from history that many don't know much (or anything!!!) about. History unfortunately has focused on white men. Lee is trying to get the stories of the amazing women that came before us out into the world and this book helps her do that!

I love history but am
Maissa Daas
Feb 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: feminism
First things first these were my favorite 6 stories from the book :
Emily Warren Roebling
Sayyida al-hurra
Fatima al Fihri
Emmy Noether
Alice Ball
Annie Jump Canon
I loved the idea of bringing women from diffrent times and backgrounds together in one book. Most of the stories were interesting and they introduced me to ladies that i've never heard of before and that I would love to know more about their lives , yet I had a problem with other stories ; I questioned " do they really fall under the categ
Apr 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: feminism, non-fiction, ya
Quick, bite-sized pieces on awesome women from history that most people haven't heard of. Feminist. Intersectional. Approachable. Colloquial. And tons of fandom references (i.e. Avatar the Last Airbender and Parks and Rec)
jess ❈
this collection was really good! i know you're probably seeing the three star and giving the thinking emoji.

like i enjoyed it, but i don't read a lot of nonfiction so it didn't really stick with me. i can't tell if it's because i'm not feeling that great mentally or if the events just went in one ear and out the other.

each chapter was so quick, and i know i listened on 2x speed but even so, it felt like there could have been more for each woman?

all these women are amazing and i feel like they
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Julie d'Aubigny (Bisexual Swordswoman, Opera Singer, Hell-Raiser) was definitely my favorite. The book was empowering and I was never bored once reading it. Thanks Edie! <3 ...more
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Mackenzi Lee holds a BA in history and an MFA in writing for children and young adults from Simmons College. She is the New York Times bestselling author of the historical fantasy novels THIS MONSTROUS THING, THE GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE, which won a 2018 Stonewall Honor Award and the New England Book Award, and its sequel, THE LADY'S GUIDE TO PETTICOATS AND PIRACY, which debuted at #3 ...more

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