Gr 5–8—Kennedy offers a chronological glimpse into the lives of 19 suffragettes. Although the first 12 women profiled did not live to see the passing of the 19th Amendment, they did help lay important groundwork for the activists that came after them. Each woman is given a four-page spread, with colorful pages and bold line illustrations surrounding a black-and-white portrait. Each vignette features a side panel discussing a topic related to the women's rights movement such as the diversity in religion among the early suffragettes and women's roles in Native American cultures. Most of the women featured are white, and the author does not hesitate to call out the racism in many early suffragette circles. Many were against African American men winning the right to vote. Following the 19 profiles, the author briefly highlights other key players in the fight for women's suffrage, including some men. Many important contributors have likely been lost in history due to prejudice. A time line, a collection of photographs, and a lengthy works cited section are included. VERDICT This title may be in high demand as the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment gets closer. An excellent snapshot view of suffragettes for older elementary and middle school students. Recommended purchase for all libraries.—Katharine Gatcomb, Portsmouth Public Library, NH
A brief history highlighting 19 pioneering women who repeatedly overcame obstacles and persisted in leading the women's suffragist movement, earning women the right to vote.
Commemorating 100 years since women have had the right to vote, Kennedy selects founders, leaders, organizers, and advocates—many from different backgrounds, classes, and traditions—that were essential in fighting for gender equality. Lesser- and well-known names alike, such as Lucretia Mott, Sojourner Truth, Susan B. Anthony, Mary Ann Shadd Cary, and Adelina Otero-Warren, weave in and out of one another's abbreviated stories. Despite its limited overview, readers still acquire glimpses of the setbacks and struggles they endured, ranging from public (physical or verbal) attacks to horrendous jail conditions. They also learn how, contradicting their revolutionary mission, white suffragists like Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Frances Willard, and Alice Stokes Paul often fell into racial tensions with African Americans who were fighting for similar rights. Ida B. Wells joins Truth and Cary as the only women of color profiled (Otero-Warren was of European descent). Mustard, coral, and teal pages provide a backdrop for Dockrill's mostly black-and-white sketches, and the minibiographies serve as succinct and interesting catalysts for readers to learn more about these and other women. The backmatter includes a handful of briefer bios of other important figures.
This quick read will prepare readers nicely for longer, scholarly chronicles. (epilogue, timeline, archival photos, historical sites note, sources, index) (Nonfiction. 9-13)