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The best present I received this Christmas was inscribed thusly: 12-25-14 To my Ultimate Wonder Woman! You are the best and most wonderful person I’ve ever known. Thank you for shaping me into the woman I am today. Love you always! Merry Christmas! Georgia & family

This morning I was the first one awake and had absolutely nothing on my calendar. So I grabbed a blanket and snuggled onto the couch with “The Secret History of Wonder Woman” by Jill Lepore. For two glorious hours the only sound was Chance snoring at my feet. Then Olivia woke up, and things got considerably noisier.

After a day of housecleaning (“Is somebody coming over, Grammy?” Lily asked) and piddling around, I again settled down on the couch with my book after Georgia got home from work. I never read Wonder Woman comics as a girl, but Mom did, and Wonder Woman was on her list of favorites, right behind “Tillie the Toiler” and “Brenda Starr”. When we were going through Mom’s clothes after she died, the one thing I kept was the Wonder Woman tee-shirt I had gotten her the previous Christmas.

Jill Lepore has written a fascinating history that is about much more than a comic book hero. William Moulton Marston, Wonder Woman’s creator, also invented the lie detector test. He rubbed elbows (and more) with suffragists and feminists including Emmeline Pankhurst and Margaret Sanger, and predicted a peaceful world run by women in the future. Ms. Lepore includes a treasure trove of documents, photographs, and illustrations to reflect the complex lives of Marston and his unconventional family.

I still have another 50 pages to read, as well as an additional 100 or so pages of sources and chapter notes. If you love comics, or feminist history, or sociology…GET THIS BOOK! You won’t regret it.

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