Things a Bright Girl Can Do
Through rallies and marches, in polite drawing rooms and freezing prison cells and the poverty-stricken slums of the East End, three courageous young women join the fight for the vote.
Evelyn is seventeen, and though she is rich and clever, she may never be allowed to follow her older brother to university. Enraged that she is expected to marry her childhood sweetheart rather than be educated, she joins the Suffragettes, and vows to pay the ultimate price for women’s freedom.
May is fifteen, and already sworn to the cause, though she and her fellow Suffragists refuse violence. When she meets Nell, a girl who’s grown up in hardship, she sees a kindred spirit. Together and in love, the two girls start to dream of a world where all kinds of women have their place.
But the fight for freedom will challenge Evelyn, May and Nell more than they ever could believe. As war looms, just how much are they willing to sacrifice?
“But when something’s important, isn’t it worth suffering for? Like in war. This is a sort of war, you know.” She saw her father’s blank expression and said, gently, “A war for freedom.”
“Freedom!” He started to laugh. “Darling!” he said. “You’re hardly a white slave, are you? What freedoms could you possibly want?”
Facinating & Challenging!
This was a fascinating and very challenging book to write. It has three main characters and takes place over four years, four years, moreover, filled with many hugely important historical events, both for the world and for the suffrage movement.
An Edwardian children’s book
I wanted this book to feel like an Edwardian children’s book, with police brutality, trenches, hunger strikes and lesbian kisses. It’s a book about fighting for your basic rights, but it’s also two love stories, and three coming-of-age stories.
Deeds not words.
“Inspiring, utterly captivating and immensely enjoyable”
Louise O’Neill, author of Only Ever Yours