March is Women’s History Month! Not only are there plenty of books on women throughout history available through the library, but there are also a lot of graphic novels! Graphic novels offer a unique way to interact with history through their use of pictures and words, and this month is the perfect time to check them out if you’ve considered doing so before! Here is a short list of some graphic novel biographies to get you started: 

Rachel Carson by Birdie Willis

A graphic novel biography of Rachel Carson, the woman who changed the way America fought against the environmental crisis through her bestselling books, ultimately spurring the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Follows the celebrated Polish scientist from Curie’s time as a struggling governess to her years in France making breakthrough discoveries. Curie was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and the only person to win a Nobel Prize in two different sciences.

Ms. Davis: A Graphic Biography by Sybille Titeux de la Croux

In 1971, the FBI put Angela Davis on their 10 Most Wanted List because they alleged that she orchestrated a politically motivated Marin County courtroom gunfight. She went to prison despite her protestations of innocence. Soon the entire world would know her story and demand her freedom. In 1972, she was found not guilty by an all-white jury. Ms Davis is the story of her dedication to the fight for justice

Anne Frank: The Graphic Adaptation adapted by Ari Folman

This adaptation of Anne Frank’s Diary of a Young Girl into a graphic version for a young readership, maintains the integrity and power of the original work. With stunning, expressive illustrations and ample direct quotation from the diary, this edition will expand the readership for this important and lasting work of history and literature.

In the early 20th century, English suffragist group the Women’s Social and Political Union formed an all-women security unit. Trained by Edith Garrud, these “jujitsuffragettes” fought against abuse and arrest while pursuing long overdue rights

Eileen Gray: A House Under the Sun by Charlotte Malterre-Barthes

In the South of France, 1924, construction began in earnest on a villa by the sea. Nearly a century later E-1027 has become a design milestone and the creator, Eileen Gray, a pioneer of Modernist design and architecture. During the dazzling Années Folles of 1920s Paris is where Gray’s work reached new heights of innovation. Gray sought to create art that was both functional and sensual, leading her to build the most daring work of her career. But a lifetime of being overshadowed by male peers nearly saw her omitted from its history.

Billie Holiday by Carlos Sampayo

Born in Philadelphia in 1915, and died too early in New York in 1959, Billie Holiday became a legendary jazz singer, even mythical. With her voice even now managing to touch so many people, we follow a reporter on the trail of the artist on behalf of a New York daily. Beyond the public scandals that marred the life of the star (alcohol, drugs, violence…), he seeks to restore the truth, revisiting the memory of Billie. Through this investigation, Muñoz and Sampayo trace, through the undertones of racism, and in the wake of the blues, the slow drift of a singer who expressed the deepest emotions in jazz.

Born in Mexico City in 1942, Graciela Iturbide wants to be a writer, but her conservative family has a different idea. Although she initially follows their wishes, she soon grows restless. After tragedy strikes, she turns to photography to better understand the world. The photographic journey she embarks on takes her throughout Mexico and around the globe, introducing her to fascinating people and cultures, and eventually bringing her success and fame. With more than two dozen photographs by Iturbide herself, Photographic explores the questions of what it means to become an artist.

Seen: Edmonia Lewis by Jasmine Walls

Meet Edmonia Lewis, the woman who changed America during the Civil War by becoming the first sculptor of African-American and Native American heritage to earn international acclaim. Jasmine Walls & Bex Glendining present the true story of courage, determination and perseverance through one of America’s most violent eras to create true beauty that still reverberates today. It’s about being seen. Both for who you are, and who you hope you can become. History is a mirror, and all too often, the history we’re told in school reflects only a small subset of the population.

A true daughter of the fearsome O’Malley clan, Grace spent her life wishing to join the fight to keep Henry VIII’s armies from invading her homeland of Ireland — only to be told again and again that the battlefield is no place for a woman. But after English conspirators brutally murder her husband, Grace can no longer stand idly by. Leading men into battle on the high seas, Grace O’Malley quickly gains a formidable reputation as the Pirate Queen of Ireland with her prowess as a sailor and skill with a sword. But her newfound notoriety puts the lives of Grace and her entire family in danger and eventually leads to a confrontation with the most powerful woman in England: Queen Elizabeth I.

Imagine a five-foot-two-inch-tall woman riding a Harley eight times across the continental United States. Now imagine she is black and is journeying across the country in the pre-Civil Rights era of the 1930s and ’40s. That is the amazing true story of Bessie Stringfield, the woman known today as The Motorcycle Queen of Miami and the first black woman to be inducted into the American Motorcyclist Association Hall of Fame and the Harley Davidson Hall of Fame. Stringfield was a pioneer in motorcycling during her lifetime; she rode as a civilian courier for the US military and founded the Iron Horse Motorcycle Club in Miami, all while confronting and overcoming Jim Crow in every ride.

Bonus! Two graphic anthologies of even more historical women who changed the world:

A comic book anthology salute to 50 magnificent women who take names, crack ceilings & change the game in pop, politics, art & science.

Wonderful Women of the World by Laurie Halse Anderson

Wonder Woman has been an inspiration for decades, and while not everyone would choose her star-spangled outfit for themselves, her compassion and fairness are worthy of emulation. We’ll be presenting tales of the real-world heroes who take up Diana’s mantle and work in the fields of science, sports, activism, diplomacy, and more!