Women's Right to Vote (History Smashers)

by Kate Messner (Author) Dylan Meconis (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 4th − 5th Grade

Myths! Lies! Secrets! Smash the stories behind famous moments in history and expose the hidden truth. Perfect for fans of I Survived and Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales.

In 1920, Susan B. Anthony passed a law that gave voting rights to women in the United States. RIGHT?

WRONG! Susan B. Anthony wasn't even alive when the Nineteenth Amendment was ratified. Plus, it takes a lot more than one person to amend the constitution.

The truth is, it took millions of women to get that amendment into law. They marched! They picketed! They even went to jail. But in the end, it all came down to a letter from a state representative's mom. No joke.

Through illustrations, graphic panels, photographs, sidebars, and more, acclaimed author Kate Messner smashes history by exploring the little-known details behind the fight for women's suffrage.

Don't miss History Smashers: The Mayflower!

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School Library Journal

Gr 3-7—Messner's middle grade nonfiction title aims to shatter common misconceptions about how women achieved the right to vote in the United States. Most people learn that the fight for women's rights was started at the Seneca Falls convention in New York in 1848; however, the women's suffrage movement began much earlier. Messner details the parts of women's suffrage that are often overlooked: Why are Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton often portrayed as the face of the movement but not others? How did women's suffrage impact Black women? Messner's readable tone will have appeal for younger readers (fifth grade and under). The book uses sidebars to bring in other points of interest, such as math skills (how many votes did an amendment need to pass?) and the personal politics of notable advocates (were many of the central figures of the movement racist?). Meconis's cartoons and illustrations bring the narrative to life. VERDICT Messner and Meconis provide a timely perspective on an important part of American history.—Emily Van Weerdhuizen, Sioux Center P.L., IA

Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Praise for the History Smashers series:

"Critical, respectful, engaging: exemplary history for children." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"The book's format may be a good match for those with shorter attention spans, and permits it to be gratifyingly capacious in what it covers." —New York Times Book Review

"Well-researched, entertaining, and packed with facts." —Booklist

"Messner and Meconis provide a timely perspective on an important part of American history." —School Library Journal

"A history book for middle-graders that should be on everyone's (child and adult) to-read list." —Shelf Awareness

"Kate Messner serves up fun, fast history for kids who want the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Absolutely smashing!" —Candace Fleming, award-wining author

"Informative and fun, eye-opening and entertaining. I wish I could have read History Smashers when I was in elementary school. I would have devoured them and developed a big appetite for even more of this sort of truth-telling." —Chris Barton, award-winning author
Kate Messner
Kate Messner is passionately curious and writes books for kids who like to wonder. A former teacher, she has written more than thirty picture books, chapter books, and novels for young readers. Kate Messner lives on Lake Champlain with her family.

Heather Ross is an illustrator and fabric designer. She lives in New York City and the Catskill Mountains.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Random House Books for Young Readers
Publication date
July 07, 2020
History Smashers
BISAC categories
JNF025200 - Juvenile Nonfiction | History | United States/19th Century
JNF025210 - Juvenile Nonfiction | History | United States/20th Century
JNF025170 - Juvenile Nonfiction | History | United States/General
Library of Congress categories
United States

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