cover image Write On, Mercy! 
The Secret Life of Mercy Otis Warren

Write On, Mercy! The Secret Life of Mercy Otis Warren

Gretchen Woelfle, illus. by Alexandra Wallner. Boyds Mills/Calkins Creek, $16.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-59078-822-6

Growing up on Cape Cod, Mercy Otis (1728–1814) preferred listening to her father’s stories about his work as a member of the colonial House of Representatives to cooking or sewing. Writing poetry and “fiery pamphlets about ‘natural rights’ for men and women,” Warren was active throughout the Revolutionary War, attending meetings for patriots who were planning the Continental Congress, as well as writing political plays and later the History of the Rise, Progress, and Termination of the American Revolution. Woelfle’s sturdy writing outlines the course of Warren’s life as a wife, mother, and activist. Wallner’s bright gouache illustrations have an unadorned style well-suited to the period. End pages include a time line of Warren’s life, a note about the “separate spheres of influence” of men and women at the time, and a painting of Warren by John Singleton Copley. Ages 8–up. Illustrator’s agent: Libby Ford. (Mar.)