Are you looking for a picture book biography about an inspiring woman serving her country during wartime?
Might I suggest Grace Banker And Her Hello Girls Answer The Call: The Heroic Story of WWI Telephone Operators by Claudia Fridell?
I’m ashamed to say I hadn’t heard of Grace Banker before I read this book, but I can’t wait to share her story with you now!
In 1917, a 25-year-old Grace Banker answered an ad seeking French-speaking telephone operators to join the Signal Corps of the United States Army. Though she couldn’t vote yet, Grace was selected as a chief operator and led a team of thirty-three operators who translated commands and transferred secret codes on the front lines during World War I.
These women were some of America’s first female soldiers and they kept communications open despite the explosions, fires, and poor weather conditions they faced. Their skill and dedication to their work played a vital role in the victory of World War I, though they remain unsung heroes today.
Working closely with Grace Banker’s family, Claudia Friedel and Elizabeth Baddeley have created a biography that feels personal. Quotes from Grace’s diaries are used throughout the book to truly highlight her voice.
The backmatter offers plenty of additional information about Grace and The Service Corps to inform young readers of the historical significance of their achievements, as well as their fight to receive veteran recognition.
Grace Banker And Her Hello Girls Answer The Call is available wherever books are sold, including Bookshop and Amazon. (Please note: These are affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission for recommendations at no cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you. Your support is always appreciated!)
Claudia Friddell is a former elementary school teacher and the author of several non-fiction children’s books. She is passionate about sharing true stories from history, and currently lives in Baltimore with her husband. To learn more about her and her work, please visit her website at claudiafriddell.com.
Elizabeth Baddeley is the illustrator of many biographies and non-fiction books for children, including the New York Times bestselling I DISSENT: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes her Mark. She currently lives in in Kansas City with her husband and son. To learn more about her and her work, please visit her website at ebaddeley.com.
Thank you so much to Calkins Creek and Boyds Mills & Kane for providing me with a review copy of Grace Banker And Her Hello Girls Answer The Call. I’m so glad to be able to share such an amazing story.