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Title: Remember the Ladies
Author: Gina L. Mulligan
Publisher: Five Star Publishing
Publication Date: 2016
Summary: Growing up in an orphanage prepared Amelia Cooke for the high-stakes role of a female lobbyist surrounded by the egos of the 1887 Congress, a time before women had the right to vote. Her success in the isolating male arena comes from using the tactics she’s learned from those who oppressed her. So when she’s hired by the National Women’s Suffrage Association to help pass a proposed constitutional amendment granting women’s voting rights, Amelia feels empowered to at last win a place for herself and give all women a voice in the world. What she doesn’t foresee is the charismatic and calculating Senator Edward Stillman who threatens to ruin her hard-earned reputation and end her career.
If not for starting this blog, it’s very unlikely I would have come across this book. Thanks to Allison at The Book Wheel, I was introduced to Remember the Ladies. I’ve read a lot of books, but this was a new topic for me, which increased my intrigue even more. It was so hard to put this book down once I started, and it took less than two weeks to finish, which is quite a feat with my super busy schedule! What I really loved about this book is the twinges of mystery and romance interlaced within the story: The sexual tension between Amelia and Edward that continued after the end of their relationship and the cat and mouse game they played to ensure victory for their side in this ultimate battle of the sexes. Although a history buff would know the end of the story because history, I was interested in how Amelia would react to the results of the Congressional vote and how those results would affect her career as a lobbyist. I have seen in other reviews from people who weren’t huge fans of the book that they were most disappointed with the ending, but I actually liked how the book ended. I saw it as a clever callback to Amelia’s previous work while keeping the historical accuracy.
Girls Just Want to Have Fundamental Rights
As you can probably tell, this book is outside the main scope of our blog, so it doesn’t get the standard Reel Lit treatment. However, there were so many great quotes about the role of women in society that grabbed my attention. I feel the need to share them as food for thought, especially in our current cultural climate, in this mini quotefest. Hopefully, they will be a jumping off point to some great conversations:
“All women should have children; it’s what you’re meant to do.”
“And if the girls had to learn to care for infants, why didn’t the boys? Everyone ignored the simple notion that children, the lucky ones, have both mothers and fathers.”
“The girls read poetry and literature, studied basic bookkeeping to run a household, learned to make clothing, and practiced cooking skills. Boys studied mathematics, science, philosophy, literature, and economics. Where the girls played with colorful yarn, the boys swirled vibrant liquids in glass beakers and slid specimens under microscopes.”
“I don’t want to be a man, but I want a place in this world like one. I want others to listen to me, and I want to do as I please. I want to prove women are capable of handling complex jobs, of throwing a stupid ball and learning science. And I admit that I also want a fine lifestyle and having a room full of people pay attention to me and my opinions.”
“Mrs. Platt, you do want to vote? I should think you’d want to make decisions about your children’s schooling and who runs our country,” Amelia said. The awkward silence saddened Amelia. She wanted women to share their thoughts and have frank discussions about the issues of the day.”
“Still the world also needed women who weren’t fit for motherhood, women who dedicated their time toward other facets of life.”
“Some men may vote with care and consideration of their families, but human beings are flawed and selfish by nature. The right to vote is a human right, not a random act based on race, religion, or gender.”
This book kept me engrossed from start to finish. It may be the first book I actually want to see come alive on either the big or small screen.
The Final Grade
Page Turner: I have hardly a criticism for this book because it charmed me so. If you are a fellow bibliophile, you’ll be nose deep in no time as well.
So…are you Team Amelia or Team Edward? Would you make it as a government lobbyist? Do you vote early and often? Let us know in the comments! |RL
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