Night Sky behind a Woman wearing a dark orange-yellow dress holding up a paper

She Caught the Light, Williamina Stevens Fleming, Astronomer | Biography of a Scientist | Ages 4 to 7 years

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Ever since Williamina Fleming was little she was curious, and her childhood fascination with light inspired her life’s work. Mina became an astronomer in a time when women were discouraged from even looking through telescopes. Yet Mina believed that the universe, with its billions of stars, was a riddle—and she wanted to help solve it.

Mina ultimately helped to create a map of the universe that paved the way for astronomers. Newbery Honor–winning Kathryn Lasky shares her incredible true story.



  • Written by Kathryn Laskey and illustrated by Julianna Swaney.
  • Published by HarperCollins, January 19, 2021. 
  •  Ages 4 to 8 years
  • 0.4" H x 10.9" L x 9.1" W (0.95 lbs) 40 pages
  • Hardcover


Praise For She Caught The Light: Williamina Stevens Fleming: Astronomer

“A scientific dreamer grounded in hard work. Poetic, accessible text combines with intricate, appealing illustrations to portray Williamina Stevens Fleming (1857-1911), talented astronomer, resilient and highly intelligent individual, and the first woman given an official title (curator of astronomical photographs) at Harvard University… Both an intriguing introduction to astronomy and an involving tale of a strong woman who overcame adversity.”
Kirkus Reviews

"A compelling story and a fine addition to STEM studies."
— School Library Journal

“Highlighting the life of Scottish-born astronomer Williamina Stevens Fleming, this picture book biography illuminates how her work chipped away at sexist barriers of the late 19th century.”
Publishers Weekly