Ruth Bader Ginsburg Couldn't Drive? (Wait! What?)

by Dan Gutman (Author) Allison Steinfeld (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 4th − 5th Grade
Series: Wait! What?

Did you know that Ruth Bader Ginsburg failed her driving test five times? Or that her real name was Joan? Bet you didn't know that she liked paddle boarding, white water rafting, and riding elephants! She even had a praying mantis named after her. Siblings Paige and Turner have collected some of the most unusual and surprising facts about one of the most famous Supreme Court Justices in history, from her childhood to her rise as the superstar Notorious R.B.G.

Narrated by the two spirited siblings and animated by Allison Steinfeld's upbeat illustrations, Ruth Bader Ginsburg Couldn't Drive? is an authoritative, accessible, and one-of-a-kind biography infused with Dan Gutman's signature zany sense of humor.

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Kirkus Reviews

Fabulous facts and foibles from the life and career of the legendary Supreme Court justice..... Likely to fill in some gaps even for devoted fans of the Notorious RBG.

School Library Journal

Gr 2-4--Fictional children Paige and Turner exchange facts about the life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, focusing primarily on the tidbits not required for book reports. Readers learn that Ginsburg's first name was Joan, she was a terrible driver and cook, and 18 people attended her wedding. Other standard information is likewise provided such as her college and law school attendance, her struggles to succeed as a female lawyer, and her career on the Supreme Court. Cartoon illustrations display milestones in Ginsburg's life. Nothing new is offered in this title; most everything presented is already found in the numerous other volumes on Ginsburg's life. The dialogue between Paige and Turner consists of short sentences, and attempts at humor (at one point they argue about being disagreeable) are distracting. VERDICT While interesting information on Ginsburg's life is presented, there is nothing unique about this title; at best an optional purchase.--Margaret Nunes

Copyright 2022 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Norton Young Readers
Publication date
November 01, 2022
Wait! What?
BISAC categories
JNF007120 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Biography & Autobiography | Women
JNF028000 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Humor | General
JNF007070 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Biography & Autobiography | Political
JNF030000 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Law & Crime
JNF053270 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Social Topics | Civil & Human Rights
Library of Congress categories
United States
Women judges
Officials and employees
Ginsburg, Ruth Bader

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