She Came To Slay: The Life and Times of Harriet Tubman

37 Ink: S. &. S.. Nov. 2019. 176p. illus. notes. ISBN 9781982139599. $23.99; ebk. ISBN 9781982139667. BIOG
Dunbar’s (history, Rutgers; Never Caught) concise biography of abolitionist icon Harriet Tubman (c. 1822-1913) begins with an anecdote illustrating the steely nerves and resolution that enabled the woman known as Moses to become a successful conductor on the Underground Railroad in the years leading up to the Civil War. Tracing the significant events of Tubman’s life from her birth into slavery in Maryland and her eventual escape, to her work for civil rights and women’s suffrage, Dunbar focuses on how each milestone inspired Tubman to tackle injustice by direct action and personal sacrifice. As a touring speaker on abolitionism, a spy for the Union Army, and a nurse to black soldiers, Tubman faced physical violence, low pay, and discrimination. In showing how Tubman persevered despite these hardships, Dunbar offers readers an inspiring story of unyielding fortitude.
VERDICT While Dunbar’s short, readable biography will appeal to many, it’s also true that events in Tubman’s life are not given the detail they deserve. As an introduction to the life of this American hero, it succeeds with style.
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