Jack M, Reviewer
Sylvia Pankhurst: Natural Born Rebel by Rachel Holmes sweeps the reader along as we revisit much of 20th century history. This is so much more than just a biography of a remarkable woman, this is a history of some of the major struggles of last century. I tend to read several books at a time and when I approach a lengthy book I try to figure out how much I want to read each day while giving the time and thought to my other reads. This is so well written and the subject was such a dynamic person that I found myself reading this faster than I intended. Even at the end of those three days I would have happily spent more time wrapped up in Pankhurst's life and Holmes' prose. While many of the issues Pankhurst confronted are still with us today I think another valuable aspect of this work is showing the reader the types of decisions a person has to make if they decide to follow what they believe to be right. Taking a stand, broadly speaking, can be straightforward. But figuring out exactly how you're going to make that stand can put one at odds with people making the same general stand. It is in deciding specifically how one tries to make an impact that one really has to make tough decisions. Sometimes family and friends are sacrificed in the name of what is right. These more nuanced choices are highlighted in this volume because Pankhurst never shied away from the difficult decisions. I highly recommend this to any reader interested in the early suffrage movements, as well as 20th century activism as a whole. Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via NetGalley.