Girls Think of Everything

Girls Think of Everything

HMH Books for Young Readers
978-0-395-93744-0 new edition
978-0-618-19563-3 paperback

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Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women

In kitchens and living rooms, in garages and labs and basements, even in converted chicken coops, women and girls have come up with ingenious innovations that have made our lives simpler and better. Their creations are some of the most enduring (the windshield wiper) and best loved (the chocolate chip cookie). What inspired these women, and just how did they turn their ideas into realities?

From Sybilla Masters, the first American woman with a documented invention (although the patent had to be in her husband’s name), to twelve-year-old Becky Schroeder, who in 1974 became the youngest girl to receive a patent, Girls Think of Everything tells the stories of these women’s obstacles and their remarkable victories.

Awards and Recognition

A Mighty Girl Best Book of 2018
IRA Children’s Book Award 2001
Children’s Book of the Month Club Best Nonfiction Book 2000
Minnesota Book Award finalist
Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children 2001
Smithsonian Notable Book 2000


“This updated version of Thimmesh’s collection of profiles of female inventors (fifteen in all) eliminates three outdated chapters and spotlights seven new inventions created since the original’s 2000 publication (Trisha Prabhu’s antibullying ReThink app; Alissa Chavez’s “Hot Seat” sensor to protect kids from being forgotten in hot cars). Today’s readers will find a laudable increase in the subjects’ diversity as well as a more contemporary focus.The many “personal interviews…employ[ing] a conversational tone” noted in the original Horn Book review (rev. May/June 2000) remain, as does the emphasis on “accomplishments over personality.” Sweet has added vibrant collages to the new chapters as well as to some of the old ones. The refreshed design also includes additions to the timeline of women’s inventions. A resource as informative as it is empowering.” (The Horn Book, October 2018)

“This very attractive, informative book will find an audience among browsers and report writers alike.” (Booklist)

“An outstanding collective biography of women and girls who changed the world with their inventions.” (School Library Journal)

“This book is an inspired ode to women inventors.” (Publishers Weekly)

Girls Think of Everything is a wonderful book, as surprising as it is inspiring …. Buy this book for the girl you love today, and she may well become a mother of invention tomorrow.” (Pulitzer Prize winner Natalie Angier, author of Woman: an Intimate Geography, 1999 National Book Award finalist)