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Corporate abuse and lack of concern for employees. Death, pain, suffering, court cases, poison, legal challenges, and long-lasting changes. The Radium Girls walks you through the working lives of the dial paint girls. I’m not going to say it’s an easy story, for it is not. But it is a necessary story, a story that changed the lives of these girls forever, and changed the working lives of others far beyond them.
What I am Reviewing
The Radium Girls Young Readers’ Edition: the scary but true story of the poison that made people glow in the dark. This 416-page chapter book for middle school students was written by Kate Moore. Ms. Moore is a New York Times bestselling author. The story is about the hundreds of girls toil amidst the glowing dust of the radium-dial factories. ….. THE RADIUM GIRLS is a rich, historical narrative of the young women exposed to the “wonder” substance of radium, and their brave struggle for justice. Their courage and tenacity saved many others, led to world-changing regulations, and even prevented nuclear war.
Reviewed on behalf of Raincost Books. I received an advanced readers copy.
My affiliate link below is for the adult version of The Radium Girls. I found a copy of this book on Amazon.ca only. I have not read the adult version but I thought some might be interested in it.
The Details about The Radium Girls
I have to admit, this story was completely new to me. I wasn’t aware that people used this dangerous substance in such a frivolous way. Nor was I aware that girls would actually put this substance into their bodies just so they could clearly paint numbers on clocks. AND be told that it was perfectly safe to do so. I was horrified at the callousness of the management. Such blatant wrongness.
- Knowledge (16 chapters)
- Power (18 chapters)
- Justice (11 chapters)
The several smaller sections: Epilogue, postscript, a timeline and various acknowledgements.
Kate Moore is very clear about the times. The initial dispute about the safety of radium, the awareness of its potential dangers, and the Joie de Vive of the girls employed to use radium. There are many other world events going on that detracted from their plight increasing the difficulty.
She introduces us to the women, helping us to get to know them, that human face makes the story all the more striking. Throughout its pages you’ll find pictures, some with faces blocked others with faces clearly seen.
I very much enjoyed going through the timeline. The mixture of world events, along with legal challenges and results, Deaths of women and so much more. Woven together to present a thorough picture of the times.
The plight of these women often captured the interest of the press, newspaper articles abounded.