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

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  190 ratings  ·  71 reviews
For nearly 150 years, American women did not have the right to vote. On August 18, 1920, they won that right, when the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified at last. To achieve that victory, some of the fiercest, most passionate women in history marched, protested, and sometimes even broke the law—for more than eight decades.
From Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth
Hardcover, 312 pages
Published February 13th 2018 by Algonquin Young Readers
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4.09  · 
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 ·  190 ratings  ·  71 reviews

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This is a compelling, engaging, and balanced look at the women's suffrage movement which doesn't shy away from the racist attitudes of some of the movement's most well-known (and historically beloved) leaders. Complete with interesting images and great back matter, this is a book for readers looking for a solid history of the American push for the right for women to vote. I've read more than one book on this topic for young readers, but this is the first one I've read which doesn't shy away from ...more
Lauren Stoolfire
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a free copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The 19th amendment was finally ratified on August 18th, 1920 granting women the right to vote as citizens of the United States of America. This work of narrative non-fiction discusses the suffragists achievements, politics, and their passion from Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Victoria Woodhull, Sojourner Truth, and Alice Paul. It also focuses on the darker moments within the movement in regards to their relationsh
Woah, totally in love with this well-researched gem about American suffragists that doesn't hide the grittiness of the movement including the racist remarks the heroines of the movement wrote and spoke around the fight for white women's suffrage against black men's suffrage. It was particularly fascinating during Lincoln's time as president when he said "one war at a time" and another responded that this "is the negro's hour" when both battles struggled against one another. This particular eleme ...more
Feb 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interesting book on the Women's American Suffragists. It starts out in the mid 1800's when some women started up the campaign for rights for women to vote and other rights. In the beginning women like,Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone, and Sojourner Truth, to name a few started the long road to women's rights for vote and other rights. The book writes of their struggles and what they went through. It takes the readers up to 1920 when the 19th ammendment was finally signed. ...more
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook, 2018
A must read! It is dense but it's also critical information for the next generation.
Marie Andrews
Being from the UK, I was only ever taught about women's suffrage here in England, and therefore knew very little about the journey to American suffrage, so thought this would be a great book to pick up to learn about it, especially as this is marketed as a YA book. It's very clear that this book has been researched very well, and there is a good mixture of information from primary sources too, as well as reflecting back from a current perspective. However, I didn't find it that engaging and it w ...more
Angela Blount
Jan 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Originally reviewed for YA Books Central:

3.5 Stars

A candid, comprehensive, and thoroughly researched look at the long fight for women’s rights—spanning nearly a century of history while following select figureheads of the Suffrage movement through their varied efforts, missteps, divisions, and triumphs.

To be up-front honest, let me just say that this was easily the most thorough work I’ve ever read on the Women’s Suffrage movement. Which, sadly, isn’t sa
Ms. Yingling
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

This extremely informative book on the history of women's suffrage starts with Elizabeth Cady Stanton's life, and her father's disappointment that she is not a boy. It continues through the Seneca Falls Convention, covers Susan B. Anthony, and gives really interesting information about Victoria Woodhull. Lucy Stone and other luminaries in the Suffrage movement are amply covered, and the stories are told in an intriguing way. For example, we are given just enough informat
Molly Dettmann
Mar 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
An excellent and detailed, but not overwhelming read about the women’s suffrage movement. I loved that this one didn’t shy away from the amazing things these women did, and the not so amazing things that get glossed over in shallower books about this time period. The back matter and resources could keep me reading for days.
Enjoyed this well-written, easy-to-follow book that traces the women's suffrage movement from the childhood of Elizabeth Cady Stanton in the 1830s to the ratification of the amendment in 1920. Kudos to Winifred Conkling for making this a story with a human face as well as making it compelling.
Kathleen Duffy
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the most comprehensive and interesting books I’ve read on the women’s suffrage movement. It starts in 1800 with Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B Anthony and works its way all the way to the 19th amendment. I love how the author connected these histories, which often seem to be segmented in texts. And I love how she didn’t put the women on pedestals, instead focused on their strengths and weaknesses so that we can learn from their mistakes. Conkling- thank you. I will be using se ...more
Oct 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Conkling has written a compelling narrative around the experiences of the major leaders of the women's suffrage movement. Both those who helped start the movement and those who saw the final victory are included. Conflict from without and within hampered the movement from the beginning, but the determination and courage of those who believed so firmly lead to the movement's survival. Conkling includes lots of interesting stories, quotes, and details about both the people involved and the main ev ...more
Jan 24, 2018 rated it liked it
This book is very detailed, comprehensive and engaging, but for me I found it a little boring. as a YA book, I think it might be a little heavy. Too much text book, not enough to engage the younger readers. I did enjoy it, but found MY attention span wandering, so I think the target audience would too.
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Votes for Women! is a very well-researched account of the American Women's Suffrage Movement. While technically aimed at the middle grade audience, this is dense text. There are some fascinating facts throughout the book, and I think it would be great to pull passages to use in the classroom. I just wish that this was slightly more engaging for the younger audience.
Emma (Miss Print)
May 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Votes for Women! American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot (2018) by Winifred Conkling is engaging narrative non-fiction at its best.

This book offers a nuanced history of the women’s suffrage movement in the United States from the Seneca Falls convention through to the momentous vote that ratified the nineteenth amendment with the moments leading up to the vote and its aftermath framing the book as prologue and epilogue.

Most of the book is follows Elizabeth Cady Stanton from her birth
I received a DIGITAL Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. From the publisher -
On August 18, 1920, American women finally won the right to vote. Ratification of the 19th Amendment was the culmination of an almost eighty-year fight in which some of the fiercest, most passionate women in history marched, protested, and sometimes broke the law in to achieve this huge leap toward equal rights.
In this expansive yet personal volume, author Winifred Conkli
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
VOTES FOR WOMEN is a bold new nonfiction book from Winifred Conkling, author of PASSENGER ON THE PEARL, RADIOACTIVE and SYLVIA AND AKI. Chronicling the entire suffragist movement from its birth to the ratification of the 19th amendment, Conkling’s book tells the story of American women fighting for their right to vote. The book pulls you in from the first chapter and will have readers cheering on the tenacious American women as well as mourning their losses.

As a feminist and a strong supporter o
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was given this book by Algonquin Young Readers in exchange for an honest review.
Today's Nonfiction post is on Votes for Women!: American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot by Winifred Conkling. It is 312 pages long and is published by Algonquin Young Readers. The cover is red with different pictures of different women over the course of the eighty-year battle for the vote. The intended reader is someone who is interested in women's history, voting rights, and American history. There is
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow, what an unexpected pleasure it was to read this! I had just watched a movie about British suffragettes, and I realized I had known nothing about this movement, and I knew very little about American suffragists, either. I picked up this book on a whim, unsure if I would do more than leaf through it. But I started at the beginning and I was immediately hooked. Though the focus of the story fades from character to character, Conkling succeeded in keeping me thoroughly engrossed. The names Eliz ...more
Jul 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Originally published on my blog: Nonstop Reader.

Votes for Women!: American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot is a well written book about the history of the suffrage movement in the USA, along with interesting and enlightening commentary on how the movement affected (and was affected by) other social and political movements of the day, such as civil rights for people of color.

This book draws a thread throughout the narrative with a connected timeline. It's almost incredible to think (a
Thanks to NetGalley and Algonquin Young Readers for the opportunity to read and review Votes for Women! by Winifred Conkling which tells the story of events that took place between the beginning of the women’s rights movement in 1848 and when women were given the right to vote in 1920. The appendix includes a list of the primary sources used for this book’s research and there’s also a timeline included. The preface describes how women from both sides of the suffrage movement approached a politic ...more
Virginia McGee Butler
Feb 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Acknowledging that many people know how the story ends with American women who have had the right to vote for nearly a hundred years and how it began in a women’s rights meeting in Seneca Falls, NY in 1848, Winifred Conkling sets out to fill out the in-between. Her book, Votes for Women, came out on February 2.

In a book that is much more entertaining than either its title or its subject matter would suggest, Winifred paints complicated portraits of the women who led the way in seeking equal righ
John Plowright
Feb 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
On 18 August 1920, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the 19th Amendment, meaning that the enfranchisement of all American women became law.

The scene in the Tennessee House of Representatives had been exceptionally tense as everything ultimately turned on the vote of twenty-four-year-old Harry T. Burn who had been expected to vote against ratification but who was swayed at the eleventh hour by a message from his mother telling him, "Don't forget to be a good boy" and "vote for suffrage."
Apr 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Feminists, Students
Shelves: reviewed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As far as historical non-fiction goes, I really loved this book. (It can't compare to how much I love a good novel, but I still give it 5 stars for its category.) It was an easy, informative read that helped me learn a ton, yet wasn't too chock full of unnecessary and boring details. I couldn't believe the amount of research that must have gone into writing this book. I also could not believe how many women actively campaigned against being able to vote. (What?!) After reading this book, I'm eve ...more
Susan O
Gaining the right to vote in the US has been a difficult process for everyone who wasn't born a white male.

"The Nineteenth Amendment enfranchised women, but some states quickly moved to deny nonwhite women - and men - the right to vote. Native Americans were not granted the right to vote until the Indian Citizenship Act was passed in 1924. Chinese Americans didn't get the right to vote until 1943. Japanese Americans and other Asian Americans weren't granted the right to vote until 1952. And the
May 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
An excellent overview of the 70-year fight for women's suffrage. Though written for middle-grade and high school readers, this book is also useful for adults as a very readable introduction to the topic. Conkling profiles several leaders of the movement and doesn't shy away from exposing their flaws.

My only complaint is that space limitations meant some stories got left out. I wish the author could have said more about Ida Wells-Barnett and other prominent women of color, though she did at leas
Linda Owen
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
OK, this is marketed for young adults, but it was a wonderful book for this much older than young adult! This is an entirely readable account of the suffragette/women's right movement in the United States. Really, this was an early non-violent protest in the U.S. (before the Civil Rights movement) and went on for so many years! I was certainly familiar with Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, but did not have any idea about the women who carried on the fight after their deaths. I knew t ...more
Libby Ames
Jul 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: girl-power
Votes for Women! follows the grueling battle for women’s suffrage in the United States. Starting with the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 until the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920, this book documents the highs and lows of the struggle. Winifred Conkling aptly describes the strong women behind this cause, showing their determination as well as their humanity. Her writing flows and presents all the major historical events in a way that compels readers to continue.

This is an excellent b
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Votes For Women is an extremely well written and extensively researched book. The author included not only the issues of suffrage, but other topics such as the temperance movement and the exclusion of voting rights for women with the passing of the Fifteenth Amendment. There’s a myriad of background information as well as personal obstacles that many faced along the way. You will not find this type of information in history textbooks. This book would be an added bonus when teaching about the suf ...more
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WINIFRED CONKLING studied journalism at Northwestern University and spent the next 25 years writing non-fiction for adult readers, including for Consumer Reports magazine and more than 30 books. As part of her transition to writing for young people, she is working toward her Master of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Sylvia & Aki is her