Thursday Book Feature: Hidden Figures

Hidden figures: the American dream and the untold story of the Black women mathematicians who helped win the space race Lee
Shatterly, Margot.Copyright 2016

This book follows the lives of four African American female mathematicians who worked in a Virginia aerospace lab during World War II. It provides background information about technical aspects of the war and how blacks were treated. In the prologue, the author talks about her life growing up with her father working at that same laboratory and how she was inspired to tell these women’s stories.

This was one of two titles my book club chose for discussion this month. Although the historical information was interesting, there was way too much of it. I would just get into the story of one of these women when the author would switch from storyteller mode to historian mode. I also think the subtitle should have been shortened. I got through about five chapters before realizing that these women’s stories, though interesting, are not worth slogging through all the unnecessary background information.


Abbie Johnson Taylor
We Shall Overcome
How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems
My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds
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Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of two novels,, two poetry collections, and a memoir with another novel on the way. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at

2 thoughts on “Thursday Book Feature: Hidden Figures”

  1. Hi, Abbie–HIDDEN FIGURES was February’s selection of one of my book clubs and provided a stimulating discussion.  Although the book is indeed a history tome with limited development of the emotions of the notable women, I was able to review so much history and learn so very much by reading this book.  Ms. Shetterly’s extensive research to bring forth such an inspiring book is admirable.  As I grow older, I love reading history more and more.  In reading this book, my greatest surprise was that no one had written a book about one or more of these ladies previously.

    With thanks for your book thoughts, Alice


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