Synopses & Reviews
"This earnest story springs from the life of Bessie Keith Pond, who was 10 years old in 1896 when Susan B. Anthony visited Berkeley, Calif., to rouse women to work for the passage of a state referendum that would give them voting rights. When Bessie complains that girls aren't allowed to do everything that boys are, Anthony invites her to a rally, asserting, 'Women's votes can help change the world.' While Murphy's (The Children of Alcatraz) prose creates a strong sense of the injustices of the period, it can occasionally feel melodramatic. When Bessie tours a factory and one young female worker wonders aloud if she can go to school if women win the vote, Bessie says, 'I couldn't imagine not learning how to read and write. I leaned against the wall and tried to catch my breath.' The referendum doesn't pass, underscoring the idea that freedoms aren't won overnight; back matter (which includes biographical sketches of Anthony and Pond) provides a concise history of the suffragist movement. Rendered in thick, forceful strokes, Schuett's (Liberty's Voice) gouache paintings easily convey Bessie's energy and Anthony's conviction. Ages 6 10." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.