For young readers not quite ready for Ann Bausum’s masterly With Courage and Cloth (2004), the survey offers a powerful...

RIGHTFULLY OURS

HOW WOMEN WON THE VOTE

A timeline that starts in January 1777, when Mary Katherine Goddard printed the first full copy of the Declaration of Independence, and ends with the women’s suffrage amendment passed in 1920 opens this fine history of how women got the vote in the United States.

Hollihan covers the eight decades of struggle for women’s suffrage with plentiful illustrations, numerous sidebars and a straightforward ability to explain words and ideas in context. The stories, struggles and great work of Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony and Alice Paul are laid out, as well as Angelina and Sarah Grimké, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Jane Addams and many other women famed and lesser-known. Hollihan is particularly good at tracing, in language middle-graders can understand, how little control women had over their lives and persons. She also does not gloss over the deep divisions between white women and African-American women, and between the conservative and radical movements within women’s suffrage associations. The only downside is the activities, which range from slightly silly (dress up like an ancient Greek for suffrage!) to simply wrong (cake mix does not taste as good as a cake made from scratch).

For young readers not quite ready for Ann Bausum’s masterly With Courage and Cloth (2004), the survey offers a powerful lesson in the vindication of the rights of women. (resources, index [not seen]) (Nonfiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-883052-89-8

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Chicago Review Press

Review Posted Online: June 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2012

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Like oil itself, this is a book that needs to be handled with special care.

OIL

In 1977, the oil carrier Exxon Valdez spilled 11 million gallons of oil into a formerly pristine Alaskan ocean inlet, killing millions of birds, animals, and fish. Despite a cleanup, crude oil is still there.

The Winters foretold the destructive powers of the atomic bomb allusively in The Secret Project (2017), leaving the actuality to the backmatter. They make no such accommodations to young audiences in this disturbing book. From the dark front cover, on which oily blobs conceal a seabird, to the rescuer’s sad face on the back, the mother-son team emphasizes the disaster. A relatively easy-to-read and poetically heightened text introduces the situation. Oil is pumped from the Earth “all day long, all night long, / day after day, year after year” in “what had been unspoiled land, home to Native people // and thousands of caribou.” The scale of extraction is huge: There’s “a giant pipeline” leading to “enormous ships.” Then, crash. Rivers of oil gush out over three full-bleed wordless pages. Subsequent scenes show rocks, seabirds, and sea otters covered with oil. Finally, 30 years later, animals have returned to a cheerful scene. “But if you lift a rock… // oil / seeps / up.” For an adult reader, this is heartbreaking. How much more difficult might this be for an animal-loving child?

Like oil itself, this is a book that needs to be handled with special care. (author’s note, further reading) (Informational picture book. 9-12)

Pub Date: March 31, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5344-3077-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Beach Lane/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2019

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The car gets shortchanged, but comparing the divergent career paths of its (putative) two riders may give readers food for...

TWO MEN AND A CAR

FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT, AL CAPONE, AND A CADILLAC V-8

A custom-built, bulletproof limo links two historical figures who were pre-eminent in more or less different spheres.

Garland admits that a claim that FDR was driven to Congress to deliver his “Day of Infamy” speech in a car that once belonged to Capone rests on shaky evidence. He nonetheless uses the anecdote as a launchpad for twin portraits of contemporaries who occupy unique niches in this country’s history but had little in common. Both were smart, ambitious New Yorkers and were young when their fathers died, but they definitely “headed in opposite directions.” As he fills his biographical sketches with standard-issue facts and has disappointingly little to say about the car itself (which was commissioned by Capone in 1928 and still survives), this outing seems largely intended to be a vehicle for the dark, heavy illustrations. These are done in muted hues with densely scratched surfaces and angled so that the two men, the period backgrounds against which they are posed, and the car have monumental looks. It’s a reach to bill this, as the author does, a “story about America,” but it does at least offer a study in contrasts featuring two of America’s most renowned citizens. Most of the human figures are white in the art, but some group scenes include a few with darker skin.

The car gets shortchanged, but comparing the divergent career paths of its (putative) two riders may give readers food for thought. (timeline, bibliography) (Picture book/biography. 10-12)

Pub Date: March 12, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-88448-620-6

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Tilbury House

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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