cover image Votes for Women! American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot

Votes for Women! American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot

Winifred Conkling. Algonquin Young Readers, $19.95 (240p) ISBN 978-1-61620-734-2

This comprehensive history chronicles the almost-80-year battle for women’s suffrage. Conkling (Radioactive!) effectively sketches the complex personalities of the women who fought for women’s right to vote, beginning with Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony and including subsequent leaders Carrie Chapman Catt and the more radical Alice Paul. Throughout, the detailed narrative contextualizes the contributions of the many women (and men) involved, including how women’s rights intersected with the abolition movement and the impacts of the Civil War and WWI. Sidebar biographies and historical photographs help bring figures in the movement to life. Throughout, Conkling skillfully presents the women in their own words, such as Sojourner Truth’s famous speech advocating for women’s rights regardless of race, and Anthony’s rallying cry to the next generation, shortly before her death in 1906: “With such women consecrating their lives, failure is impossible!” From the first Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls in 1848 to the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920, this is a commanding and relevant account of sweeping, hard-won social reform and action. Ages 13–up. Agent: Sarah Davies, Greenhouse Literary. (Feb.)