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Review of Remembering Rosalind Franklin

Rosalind Franklin & The Discovery

of the Double Helix Structure of DNA



Cover of children's book Remembering Rosalind Franklin by Tanya Lee Stone

Christy Ottaviano Books

(Little, Brown and Company)


40 pages

Ages 5-9

Author: Tanya Lee Stone

   Illustrator: Gretchen Ellen Powers

Character: Rosalind Franklin


" Rosalind Franklin was a Jewish scientist with a remarkable talent as a chemist. Although there were few women working in this field in the 1950s, Franklin, using crystallography, captured an image that held the secret to unlocking the structure of DNA: the double helix. Her Photo 51 was used by her male colleagues without her knowledge, and they went on to win the Nobel Prize, while Franklin never found out how instrumental her work was to the discovery of the double helix.

This incredible story uncovers the life and work of an extraordinary scientist, rightfully celebrating her landmark contributions to history."

Tantalizing taste:

"Dear reader,

This true story doesn't really have a happy ending.

Why would I start by telling you that? Because sometimes a person can do something extraordinary and not get the win. They don't become famous, or earn a prize, or live happily ever after. Sometimes, they never even find out they made a difference

Often when we hear about something that's never been done before, it's about the people who got there first… But nobody achieves such great things alone. There are usually other people whose hard work made change possible. Stories about those people are just as important. And it's up to us to remember them.

This story is about remembering Rosalind."

And something more: Tanya Lee Stone, in the Author's Note of Remembering Rosalind Franklin explains:"One of my favorite types of stories to tell are about real women who have done extraordinary things to help shape our world. Too often, these true stories are not in our history books. Even worse, for hundreds of years, countless women's achievements haven't been just been overlooked – the credit for their work has been claimed by men. This is now called the Matilda affect, named after Matilda, Joslyn Gage, who spoke about this pattern of injustice in the late 1800s...

Tragically, Rosalind Franklin died at the young age of thirty-seven from ovarian cancer. But in her brief career, she helped change what we know about DNA... My hope is that young readers will learn her name and dig more deeply into her scientific work, further honoring and remembering Rosalind for her invaluable contributions to science."


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