Today in January Magazine’s fiction section, Diane Leach looks at A Short History of Women by Kate Walbert. Says Leach:
Dorothy Trevor Townsend is starving herself to death. Her cause is not anorexia, but suffrage. The year is 1914, and though a war is on, the brilliant Townsend is doing her best to make a statement, to be heard of above the horrible din of war. She is willing to die for her cause, heedless of her children, Evelyn and Thomas, of her lover, William Crawford, of her mother, who will be stuck with her orphaned children. Dorothy dies for her cause, and is immortalized on a commerative postage stamp, a burden or honorific to be borne by her descendants.The full review is here.
Author Kate Walbert has created an interleaved narrative of five generations of Townsend women, moving across time from England to San Francisco to New York City. In each era another Townsend finds herself fighting for her place among men.