In the spirit of Loving Frank and The Paris Wife, acclaimed novelist Melanie Benjamin pulls back the curtain on the marriage of one of America's most extraordinary couples: Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh.
For much of her life, Anne Morrow, the shy daughter of the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, has stood in the shadows of those around her, including her millionaire father and vibrant older sister, who often steals the spotlight. Then Anne, a college senior with hidden literary aspirations, travels to Mexico City to spend Christmas with her family. There she meets Colonel Charles Lindbergh, fresh off his celebrated 1927 solo flight across the Atlantic. Enthralled by Charles's assurance and fame, Anne is certain the celebrated aviator has scarcely noticed her. But she is wrong.
Charles sees in Anne a kindred spirit, a fellow adventurer, and her world will be changed forever. The two marry in a headline-making wedding. Hounded by adoring crowds and hunted by an insatiable press, Charles shields himself and his new bride from prying eyes, leaving Anne to feel her life falling back into the shadows. In the years that follow, despite her own major achievements - she becomes the first licensed female glider pilot in the United States - Anne is viewed merely as the aviator's wife. The fairy-tale life she once longed for will bring heartbreak and hardships, ultimately pushing her to reconcile her need for love and her desire for independence, and to embrace, at last, life's infinite possibilities for change and happiness.
Drawing on the rich history of the twentieth century - from the late twenties to the mid-sixties - and featuring cameos from such notable characters as Joseph Kennedy and Amelia Earhart, The Aviator's Wife is a vividly imagined novel of a complicated marriage - revealing both its dizzying highs and its devastating lows. With stunning power and grace, Melanie Benjamin provides new insight into what made this remarkable relationship endure.
Until reading Melanie Benjamin's exquisitely crafted novel, The Aviator's Wife Anne Morrow Lindburgh seemed to be, as the title suggests, simply the aviator's wife. But her remarkable life far outshines that of her famous spouse. (Reviewed by BookBrowse First Impression Reviewers).
A thoughtful examination of the forces which shaped the author of Gift from the Sea.
Well-researched and paced, this novel will certainly spark readers' interest in learning more about this famous couple.
Starred Review. In true Benjamin style, it's Anne who captures us all in this exquisite fictional take on an iconic marriage.
Kate Alcott, Author of The Dressmaker
Here, passionately imagined, is the story of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, the wife of one of the most legendary American heroes of all time. Vivid and mesmerizing, The Aviator's Wife takes us behind the scenes and into the heart of the woman who loved and married Charles Lindbergh. That was her destiny - a life that took her soaring into the skies and then plunged her to earth, a story of both triumph and pain that will take your breath away.
Nancy, Blue Willow Bookshop
Benjamin does a tremendous job of overlaying the facts with a writer's paintbrush that really make Charles and especially Anne come alive for the reader. This is by far Benjamin's best work to date.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by Jana Loved this book This book was fascinating reading. Although I was familiar with the Lindbergh kidnapping case, I learned a lot I didn't know about Anne and Charles. I didn't know that they were plagued by reporters everywhere they went, even before the... Read More
Rated of 5
by Becky H Fame can be terrifying This well written fictionalization of Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s life from just before she meets Charles A Lindbergh until his death in 1974 is thought provoking. Approximately equal time is given to “the events of 1932” (the kidnapping and murder of... Read More
Rated of 5
by Shells Not just a wife . . . I’ve been studying Anne Morrow Lindbergh for more than ten years and I found the excerpt in Good Housekeeping from “The Aviator’s Wife” by Melanie Benjamin to be not only a misrepresentation of her early life, but if this continues throughout the... Read More
Rated of 5
by Caroline R. (New Canaan, CT) a wife's perspective Very enjoyable and interesting perspective on Charles Lindbergh's life as told through the eyes of his wife. Good character development with the right amount of fact and fiction. I found myself routing for Anne and disliking Charles more than I... Read More
Rated of 5
by Johanna M., Anderson's Bookshop, (Naperville, IL) "A" for the Aviator's Wife Years ago I enjoyed reading "Gifts of the Sea" and only as I began "Aviator's Wife" did I recall the little book that made me look at shells differently. I read eagerly the life of Charles and Anne all the while hoping they would find true peace... Read More
Rated of 5
by Kathrin C. (Corona, CA) A 20th Century Flight I was first captivated by Melanie Benjamin's writing while reading her debut novel "Alice I Have Been". Her work seamlessly merges historical fiction and biopic - it takes you straight to other times, into other places and reintroduces you to... Read More
Anne Morrow Lindbergh is, of course, the aviator's wife in the new novel of the same name by Melanie Benjamin. She is also the author of the widely acclaimed book, Gift from the Sea, which was first published in 1955. Anne Lindbergh wrote it while in Florida, on Captiva Island, and she used the shells on the beach as a metaphor to reflect on the lives of American women in the 20th century. Gift from the Sea is the kind of book typically categorized as "inspirational"; within its covers it explores many personal and social issues such as youth, age, love, marriage, contentment, peace and solitude.
Originally written as a series of separate essays, Gift from the Sea reads as though it flowed directly from Lindbergh's head and heart, into her pencil, and onto the page. And in essence, it did. Lindbergh wrote about the pitfalls of modern...
Skillfully interweaving historical fact with psychological insight and vivid imagination, Sharratt's redemptive novel, Illuminations, brings to life one of the most extraordinary women of the Middle Ages: Hildegard von Bingen, Benedictine abbess, visionary, and polymath.
A Man Called Intrepid author dies aged 89(Dec 03 2013) William Stevenson, a journalist and author who drew on his close ties with intelligence sources to write two best-selling books in the 1970s, A Man Called...