Every Friday until its publication, I'm going to blog something about Brave New Girls: Stories of Girls Who Science and Scheme, a YA sci-fi anthology featuring tech-savvy heroines. The goal is to encourage more girls to explore Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math careers. Revenues from sales of the anthology will be donated to a scholarship fund through the Society of Women Engineers.
Today, I'm spotlighting one of the stories that will be featured in the anthology: Kay Dominguez's dystopian tale "Our Very Respected and Always Benevolent Leader." Whew, what a title! It refers to the totalitarian ruler from whom the main character, a teen munitions expert named Ava, is hiding. Years ago, a strange spacecraft called the Behemoth arrived. No attempts were made to communicate, and the hull appears to be impenetrable. Panic ensued, and Our Very Respected and Always Benevolent Leader (who is otherwise unnamed) used that as a springboard to power. But Ava wasn't willing to cower, and she spends her days hiding from the authorities while using her expertise to design an explosive capable of penetrating the Behemoth. I really liked that Ava's skills were a bit out-of-the-box; one doesn't always think of explosives experts when thinking of STEM! And Kay's writing is absolutely gorgeous -- atmospheric and haunting, spare in words yet rich in evoked emotions. Just wait till you read this one!
Our Very Respected and Always Benevolent Leader
Ava, an explosives and munitions expert, works to break through the hull of a seemingly impenetrable, monstrous spacecraft that appears above her city.
Kay was born in Manhattan but raised in NJ, which she loves as fiercely as some people love their countries or sports teams. She fell in love with YA fantasy and sci-fi as a kid and is proud to have never grown out of it. She has a B.A. in Linguistics, which fed an already present love of language and metaphor, and a minor in Spanish. When not working or writing, she enjoys food, beer, anything to do with Latin America or the Spanish language, yoga, and NFL football. Her YA fantasy novel is represented by Sharon Pelletier of Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.
THOUGHTS ON BRAVE NEW GIRLS
I would love to see girls and women with equal representation in STEM fields, and I believe a crucial first step to achieving that is to erase the still-present cultural stigma. Fiction is a powerful expression of cultural values, and therefore an important weapon in normalizing these interests, pursuits, and careers for young girls!
BRAVE NEW GIRLS: STORIES OF GIRLS WHO SCIENCE & SCHEME will be released in August 2017!
ADD IT ON GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34197584-brave-new-girls?ac=1&from_search=true