History is always on my list. I just finished “The Hello Girls: America’s First Women Soldiers,” by Elizabeth Cobbs. It recounts the story of women telephone operators who served in World War I. While they were treated as “less-than” in terms of benefits, they were seen as superior to men in their ability to handle the calls impacting troop movements and ultimately, saving lives. Many firsthand stories.

Currently, I’m almost finished with “Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II,” by Liza Mundy. Another fascinating book, telling the major role played by women recruited from colleges and small towns but sworn to secrecy about their job as cryptanalysts deciphering and decoding Japanese messages. Again, working against stereotypes of the time, they were instrumental in saving many thousands of American lives. Great stories of brilliant, dedicated women who served their country in complete anonymity for over 70 years. Brilliant on all counts.

Janet Grieder, Maple Grove

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