26 November 2021

The Accidental Suffragist by Galia Gichon Book Review!

“The Accidental Suffragist”

Galia Gichon | June 1, 2021 | Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing | Historical Fiction 

Paperback | 978-1948018968 | $15.95 

Empowering novel reveals how the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory

Over a century after women were granted the right to vote, a new voice in historical fiction, Galia Gichon, explores this pivotal moment in time through a unique and distinctive lens. 

It's 1911, and protagonist Helen Fox is a factory worker living in New York's tenements. When tragedy strikes in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, Helen is seduced by the cause for women’s suffrage and is soon immersed, working alongside famous activists.

As Helen's involvement with the cause deepens, she encounters myriad sources of tension that test her perseverance: estrangement from her husband, who is blindsided by his wife's sudden activism; ostracization by neighbors; unease at working side by side with wealthier suffragettes; and worry about her children as she leaves them to picket the White House in Washington.

“The Accidental Suffragist” (Wyatt-MacKenzie, June 2021) spans World War One and concludes with the triumph of 1919. In a time when the obstacles for women seemed insurmountable, Helen discovers her voice as an independent woman and dreams of equality in a male-dominated society. 

“engaging... Helen is an appealing heroine and her personal journey will resonate with readers.” –BookList

“The Accidental Suffragist”

Galia Gichon | June 1, 2021 | Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing | Historical Fiction 

Paperback | 978-1948018968 | $15.95 

GALIA GICHON: Widely quoted in The New York Times and more, Galia Gichon spent nearly ten years writing financial research for top investment banks before launching Down-to-Earth Finance, a top personal financial advising firm in New York.

Galia is the author of My Money Matters, a personal finance book which received notable press from the New York Times, TODAY Show, CNN, Newsweek, Real Simple and more. Galia Gichon frequently leads seminars for Barnard College where she has taught for 13 years. She is an avid angel investor focusing on women-led and impact startups and actively counsels startups through accelerators. 

Follow Galia on social media: 

Twitter: @pagesandmore | Instagram: @pagesandmore

An Interview with

Galia Gichon

How has your career in finance influenced your fiction writing? 

My goal has always been female empowerment specifically through independent financial education. By being financially independent, women are able to make independent choices in their lives. As a result, I was fascinated by how women have been fighting to make those choices - starting with the right to vote! 

What was the research process like for this novel? Did you learn anything particularly surprising? 

I learned so much! I had to really research articles, books, cartoons and individual women’s stories which I devoured. Two pivotal events in the book were shocking to me: the parade in 1913 right before President Wilson’s inauguration and the Occoquan prison scene. I had never heard of them before! 

Why did you choose to center this story around a struggling factory worker rather than one of the charismatic–often wealthy–leaders of the movement?

I felt the class struggle was more interesting from a narrative perspective. I also felt it was easier to be a Suffragist if you had means and wealth, whereas the obstacles were much harder for the working class woman.

Has the suffrage movement impacted activism today? Are there certain parallels that stuck out to you?

Absolutely! The voting lines we saw during this last election seemed similar in that groups of people were denied basic privilege. It showed that we can’t take our rights today for granted and need to continue to fight for equality.

Can readers expect to see more books from you in the future?

Absolutely! I’m already working on a feminist contemporary novel and starting an outline for another historical fiction feminist novel.

My Thoughts

The Accidental Suffragist by Galia Gichon is a novel of women's rights especially the right to vote. In 1911 Helen Fox, wife and mother, is a factory worker in New York city tenements. She and her husband trying to make ends meet, actually experience a tragedy in the family from the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire . As a result of this, Helen gets involved in the cause for women’s suffrage, working alongside famous activist for the right to vote and change the work laws for children.

She experiences tension as an activist, with her husband, who reluctantly lets her do this. I felt that her husband was a lot like other men of the era, 1912, who felt that women belonged in the home and not out marching for women's rights. She is shunned by her neighbors and feeling guilt for leaving her husband and children to go marching. She also feels out of place with her wealthier suffragists.

On March 3, 1913. more than 5,000 suffragists from around the country paraded down Pennsylvania Avenue from the U.S. Capitol to the Treasury Building with Helen Fox with them.  The Night of Terror - where Suffragists were tortured by male guards at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia was a pivotal point in the movement, fictional Helen Fox experienced this along with her friends.

I was moved by this book, I knew of the movement by what I was taught in high school and had read other historical fiction books about Susan B Anthony and her quest for the right to vote. I had not known about some of women involved. Very eye opening. I could not believe that it took 50ish years for the 19th amendment to become law and that certain rights still continue to this day. I think that if you enjoy reading about the Women's Movement and how it affected people, rich and poor, give this book a read. The author should be commended for the amount of research that she did. I enjoyed the book immensely! 

I received this book for review purposes only!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for featuring my book! As a result of a preorder glitch, the book page has been moved and can now be found here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09MFXXRDV




Pin it!

Google Adsense

Please Share!


View My Stats!

View My Stats

Pageviews past week


Google Analytics