Hidden Figures - Margot Lee Shetterly

Hidden Figures

By Margot Lee Shetterly

  • Release Date: 2016-09-06
  • Genre: United States
Score: 4
4
From 130 Ratings

Description

The #1 New York Times bestseller

The phenomenal true story of the black female mathematicians at NASA whose calculations helped fuel some of America’s greatest achievements in space. Soon to be a major motion picture starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner.

Before John Glenn orbited the earth, or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.

Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation. Originally relegated to teaching math in the South’s segregated public schools, they were called into service during the labor shortages of World War II, when America’s aeronautics industry was in dire need of anyone who had the right stuff. Suddenly, these overlooked math whizzes had a shot at jobs worthy of their skills, and they answered Uncle Sam’s call, moving to Hampton, Virginia and the fascinating, high-energy world of the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory.

Even as Virginia’s Jim Crow laws required them to be segregated from their white counterparts, the women of Langley’s all-black “West Computing” group helped America achieve one of the things it desired most: a decisive victory over the Soviet Union in the Cold War, and complete domination of the heavens.

Starting in World War II and moving through to the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement and the Space Race, Hidden Figures follows the interwoven accounts of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson and Christine Darden, four African American women who participated in some of NASA’s greatest successes. It chronicles their careers over nearly three decades they faced challenges, forged alliances and used their intellect to change their own lives, and their country’s future.

Reviews

  • A very difficult read

    3
    By steph_rae
    I have a very high reading level and I struggled with the book. The essence of the story is wonderful once you get past the labyrinth of people never heard of again. The women in this book are incredible inspirations. What they accomplished in the face of so much adversity is inspiring. Very glad that I stuck with the book even if this was the longest it has ever taken me to read a book (vertigo didn't help).
  • Incredibly Bad

    1
    By He is not into you
    The book not only continues to throw scientific words that make no sense, then repeatedly uses these words, but it also fails to keep the reader's attention with a plot that doesn't have too many ups or downs to it. Just a boring book the whole way through. It's more of a biography and encyclopedia then a book.
  • Really?!?

    1
    By Urmom35
    Yet another white guilt movie when will it end
  • Great book

    4
    By Pbailey20003
    Really easy read and learned a lot
  • Hidden Figures

    5
    By Fenton93
    Easy read and greatly expands beyond the movies. Full development of the personalities and talent involved.
  • This is the book not the movie!

    4
    By Das Chuly
    Unless you read at a higher level then this book might be a hard read for you. It is written by a very intelligent woman. For an intelligent audience. I genuinely enjoyed this book. But I hope people that get it don't think they are buying a novel about these women's lives. It is about their world. Really. The entire world that touches, talks to, brushes by or simply happens near them. I liken it to the many Alan Turing books I've read. It's a ton of info and if your not paying attention you won't realize you read something about the people themselves. Again. I loved the book. I love these complicated books. Everyone else that tells me they read it because they saw me reading it though, also have told me they couldn't finish it because it just wasn't what they were expecting.
  • Awesome

    5
    By Shaye 😝😝😝😝😝😝😝😝😎
    This book was awesome and very great