Lake Oswego Reads gives away 800 copies of 'Rise of the Rocket Girls'

REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Lakeridge High School junior Katie Healy prepares piles of books before the Lake Oswego Reads book launch Monday evening.REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Stars hanging from the library ceiling highlight each of the women featured in the book. Lake Oswego Public Library staff handed out bags of popcorn, cups of Tang and hundreds of free copies Monday of the 11th annual Lake Oswego Reads pick: Nathalia Holt's "Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars."

LO Reads program coordinator Cyndie Glazer says that between the refreshments and the decorations around the library — which included a giant image of Saturn hanging from the ceiling and stars featuring every woman in the book — it was a launch like no other.

"I don't remember a book giveaway being this much fun," she says. "People showed up at 4:30 p.m. to get in line for the 6:30 p.m. book launch."

The crowd counted down from 10 before the book giveaway and gave a cry of "Book Launch!" to start things off. By Tuesday morning, the library had handed out all 800 copies of the book, which had been donated by the Friends of the Lake Oswego Public Library, to library card holders.

REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - People leave the Lake Oswego Public Library after receiving their copies of 'Rise of the Rocket Girls,' while others continue to wait in a line snaking around the second floor.REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Lakeridge High School junior Leah Rosenbaum gives Gail Wickenberg her free copy of 'Rise of the Rocket Girls.'Published in 2016, "Rise of the Rocket Girls" tells the true story of the women in the 1940s and '50s — called "human computers" — who launched America into space, breaking the boundaries of both gender and science along the way.

Glazer says she hopes the book — the first selection authored by a science writer — will draw newcomers to Lake Oswego Reads and further the program's goal of strengthening civic pride, fostering discussion among the city's residents and bringing the community together through the common bond of reading.

Community members can look forward to the dozens of events Glazer and her team have planned throughout the month of February. Many of the activities based on the book will revolve around science, technology, engineering and mathematics, as well as women's history and 1950s culture.

For more information about the program and upcoming events, visit

Contact Lake Oswego Review reporter Kelsey O'Halloran at 503-636-1281 ext. 101 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - June Cameron, who stood first in line, gives the final countdown for the book launch. People began lining up two hours early to receive their free book.

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