The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

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DONS READS: Lessons in Chemistry

Lessons in Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus is Garmus’ debut novel. The historical fiction novel depicts the life of fictional character, Elizabeth Zott, as she works to gain respect as a woman in the workforce during the 1960’s

Self-assurance and feminist advocacy during a time of a male-dominant society. Critically acclaimed historical fiction novel, Lessons in Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus, tells the story of female chemist Elizabeth Zott during gender polarization in the 1960’s.

The novel outlines Elizabeth Zott’s rise to unintentional fame as a cooking show host following her unjust termination as a chemist. Readers are guided through the highs and lows of Zott’s lifetime, including love, heartbreak, and parenthood. Throughout the novel, readers not only immerse themselves into the central plot- Zott’s battle for respect as a woman in the workforce- but also experience the minute yet intricate details of Zott’s life, further solidifying her character in readers’ hearts. 

From beginning to end, Zott decisively follows an unorthodox perspective. Her choice to pursue own interests and values cultivates a symbolic character that resonates with readers. Zott’s battles with misogyny are both heart-breaking and eye opening. The unfiltered yet complex story of Zott’s life offers reader’s a comprehensive understanding of the struggles women faced during the 1960’s. 

While society clearly is not “perfect” nor “solved” today, Lessons in Chemistry magnify nearly 75 years of social progress that is improved each day. 

Consumers have become increasingly fascinated with the heart-welling significance Lessons in Chemistry offers. In a Google Review, Marie Malone, shares, “There are shocking reminders about just how vicious misogyny can be; how wonderful a true role model and a brave example is, and how still so relevant and needed; especially the way Elizabeth tells her truth, no matter what.” 

With 85% of Google users choosing to recommend this novel, it is no surprise Garmus’ debut novel has been a success. Character Elizabeth Zott has been transformed into a role-model for women and a figurehead for necessary changes in equality.

Whether or not readers take an interest in a STEM centered novel or historical fiction, Lessons in Chemistry tells a vibrant and meaningful tale that inspires readers to traverse through history and challenge societal norms.

Following the novel’s massive success, Lessons in Chemistry, has since been adapted into a television series, yet another significant accomplishment. The single-season series drama is available on Apple TV for those who want to delve further into Zott’s world. 

Overall, Lessons in Chemistry is an incredible novel that illuminates societal flaws that still remain today. Readers who want to challenge their perspective and experience personable character development would take inspiration from this novel. 

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About the Contributor
Brooke Quirarte
Brooke Quirarte, Editor in Chief
Brooke Quirarte is in her senior year at Cathedral Catholic High School and her third year at Dons Press. Brooke was the head of Social Media her sophomore and junior year, and is now leading the newsroom as Co-Editor in Chief. Whether it is covering socio-economic issues, mental health, or human rights, you will see Brooke working to shed light on marginalized voices through each article she publishes. In her junior year, Brooke and her peers, Hong-An and Sarah, founded the book review column, Dons Reads. Within Dons Reads, Brooke focuses on learning from banned books, as she values the controversial issues these literary works illuminate. Outside of the newsroom, Brooke is leader of Kinder Reads, a club that writes stories for elementary schools. In her free time, Brooke enjoys hiking, going to the beach, and spending time with friends and family.   

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