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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
That Dickinson Girl is the first book in the Forgotten Women series by Joan Koster. Showing a different side of the American Civil War era, the story features Anna Dickinson as she broke down barriers and fought for what she believed in. Anna was 18 years old and already different from other women. She was outspoken, aware of the injustice toward women, and believed in the abolition of slavery. She was a problem for most but a leader for many. Nothing could bring Anna down unless it was Julia Pennington. Anna loved Julia, and Julia was fighting the attraction between them. As the two young women traveled to New England for a speaking tour, Julia and Anna realized how dangerous things could become for women who went against the norm. With an assassin out for Anna’s blood, it was up to Julia and Anna to fight the danger as they tried to educate women about their rights.
I have never heard of Anna Dickinson, and I was mad at myself for missing such an important key figure in women’s rights activism. I looked up Anna right after I finished That Dickinson Girl to learn more about her, and I was blown away. She was vivacious and prominent and commanded attention. Joan Koster reflected these qualities in her 18-year-old Anna Dickinson, making her larger than life. I loved how reflective Anna was without being conceited. She was intelligent and wanted some big changes. Her relationship with Julia was complicated initially, but their friendship was vital for their relationship development. The descriptions were inspiring and vivid. I was blown away by the intense imagery and the emotions they evoked. I loved the pace. The narrative flowed smoothly and steadily, making me feel like a part of the story. The last paragraph broke my heart and made me realize how much effort and sacrifices these courageous women made. Highly recommended!