New Books

Ruth Objects: The Life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg combined her personal belief in equality for men and women into a life commitment to helping others achieve equality.


“Ruth Bader Ginsburg witnessed and experienced discrimination, both subtle and overt, that profoundly affected her choices and the direction her life would take. As lawyer, federal judge, and the second woman appointed to the Supreme Court, her remarkable career was forged from strength, determination, and pure guts. Rappaport tells Ruth’s story chronologically, punctuating it with Bader’s own words. Differing typesets, font sizes, and colors separate the quotes from the cogent, informative narration supplied. Per series formula, there is no title on the front cover—just Velasquez’s oil portrait depicting her intensity and serious demeanor. Interior illustrations focus on Ruth in every phase of her life and perfectly match the text. An insightful and fascinating examination of Ginsburg as woman and jurist.” Kirkus

“As picture book bios of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg accrue, rely on Rappaport and her signature oversized format replete with selection of pitch-perfect bolded quotations to rise to the top rank. She stakes fresh ground with attention to a host of specific cases, in which she was involved as lawyer and judge, that best demonstrate her commitment to gender equality: “It is not women’s liberation; it is women’s and men’s liberation. Velasquez’s paintings ably mix personal moments and monumental poses, and a range of courtroom scenes capture Ginsburg dwarfed by the bench of justices as she argues her first Supreme Court case, then close-up and confident in a subsequent appearance.” Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books

“Rappaport adds to her Big Words series with this well-researched picture biography of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. A very handsome addition to the growing collection of RBG literature for young readers.” Publishers Weekly

‘This picture book biography vividly examines the life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Quotes from Ginsburg are spread throughout the book, with at least one on each page. Velasquez’s illustrations are realistic and feature prominently. Back matter includes important dates, an author’s note, and an illustrator’s note. VERDICT A welcome addition to any library’s picture book biography collection.’ School Library Journal

“Velasquez’s arresting jacket portrait of Ginsburg, superimposed on a facsimile of the U.S. Constitution, conveys a woman of purpose; Rappaport’s biography, largely focused on Ginsburg’s work for gender equality, reinforces this first impression. Rappaport’s narrative scope includes Ginsburg’s personal life, where her marriage mirrored her beliefs of shared and equal gender roles. Generous oil paintings place Ginsburg front and center except in illustrations relating to her marriage; there both husband and wife share the visual spotlight. Ginsburg’s own words, stating both the inequalities she endured and her own convictions, conclude thus: When I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough women on the Court, and I respond when there are nine, people are shocked. But the Supreme Court has had nine men for ever so long, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.’” Booklist


Ruth with mother

four women justices

How Does An Illustrator work?

Illustrator Eric Velasquez used photographs of Justice Ginsburg at different times in her life as his basis for painting her.
The photographs are his reference material to accurately portray her clothing, hairdos, etc. at particular times in her life. Here are some photo references. Match them to the paintings in the book. How accurate are his representations?