Review of the Week: “Elizabeth Started All the Trouble”

In honor of Women’s History Month:

Eliz StartedRappaport, Doreen. Elizabeth Started All the Trouble. Matt Faulkner, Illus. Non-fiction. Disney/Hyperion, 02/2016. [40]pp. $17.99. 978-0-78685-142-3. HIGH ADDITIONAL. GRADES 2-5.

Although the title may lead one to believe this is a picture book biography of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, it is not. It is a lively, brief history of how women in the United States obtained the right to vote. Several suffragists are featured from Abigail Adams, to Sojourner Truth, to Alice Paul. The writing style is lively and informal. It is always factual if not always clear. For example, the text indicates Stanton could not travel because she had to “stay home and bake and cook and wash and sew…,” not mentioning she probably had servants and was from an upper-class family. More impactful than the text is the full-color artwork on white backgrounds, done in the style of political cartoons, with recognizable historical figures. The final spread depicts a wide array of feminists from U.S. history, including notable women Hilary Clinton, Shirley Chisholm, Mother Jones, and Susan B. Anthony. Back matter includes a glossary of famous women “trailblazers,” important dates, and list of useful books and websites.

Penny Peck, San Jose State Univ, iSch

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