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The Aviator's Wife

by Melanie Benjamin

The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin X
The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin
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  • First Published:
    Jan 2013, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Nov 2013, 448 pages

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Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Anne Morrow the quiet, unassuming daughter. Anne Morrow the shy sister of Elisabeth Morrow who hid in Elisabeth's shadow. Anne Morrow the woman no one thought would marry before her beautiful sister, Elisabeth married. Anne Morrow.....who did marry and who married a famous man....Charles Lindbergh, behind whom she continued to be a shadow.

Anne's life was beautifully detailed by Ms. Benjamin in terms of Anne's feelings and personality especially during the kidnapping. The era was nicely portrayed as well. It covered how women from wealthy families went to prestigious schools and never used their education, but were expected to be the perfect wife and mother. Ms. Benjamin will definitely get you involved in the story through her outstanding, exceptional, in-depth writing style.

I enjoyed reading about the era and about Anne Morrow and Charles Lindbergh. I would not have wanted to live Anne's life, though...she had no life of her own per say. She had to follow Charles on his adventures, be his wife, be in the public eye, and heartbreakingly leave her children. Despite all of this, she willingly allowed him to control her and willingly backed him no matter what. Anne did come out of the shadows as she aged and was actually a very strong woman.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book, but don't think a man would enjoy it simply because of the domestic factors and the details of Anne Morrow's family and all of their lives. It is more geared toward women and the feelings and beliefs we as women share and that we like to know about other women's lives....especially famous ones. Anne, Charles, and the Morrow family led very interesting lives. I, as I am sure you will do, found myself looking up information on the life of the Morrows and Lindberghs just as the author said we would. :) ENJOY!!! 5/5
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 kidnapping. I also didn't realize that Anne was a pilot in her own right, and was the first licensed female glider pilot in the U.S. I also wasn't aware of the problems in their marriage, and Charles's anti-Semitism and Nazi sympathies. By making this book a work of fiction, the author was able to give readers an idea of how Anne felt about her marriage and accomplishments. And it made me want to read a biography of Anne Morrow Lindbergh to see how accurate the author's story is.
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 expected.
Lois P. (Logan, UT)

A Book to Savor
"The Aviator's Wife" is one of the best historical novels I've read this year! If you're an Anne Morrow Lindberg fan, you'll be glued to the page and admire Anne's resilience and courage even more as the strong woman behind the public image is brought to life. Somehow knowing what's going to happen just makes the story all the more suspenseful. If you don't know much about the Lindbergs, meeting Anne through Melanie Benjamin's eyes is a special treat. I can tell you I read the last line, grabbed a tissue--then immediately scrounged up my old copy of Gift from the Sea. Don't miss this one!
Marie A. (Warner, NH)

Who Were The Lindberghs?
In this novel, Melanie Benjamin successfully delves into a complex life led by complex characters. Exquisitely portrayed is Anne Morrow Lindbergh in a way few have been privy to. She is not the shrinking violet forever stuck in the shadow of her famous husband but rather a loving, courageous, strong-willed, intelligent, creative woman. During the course of the novel, Anne comes to realize her strengths as a wife, a mother, and a woman. Anne doesn't need a hero; she is a hero and more than just "the aviator's wife." Anne's voice is strong and reassuring as she relates her own story in the first person narrative.
A thoroughly enjoyable read--a book club hit!
Susan B. (Sarasota, FL)

Stunning portrait of the Lindberghs
Melanie Benjamin has written a fictional first person account of Anne Morrow Lindbergh's life. Born in a strong privileged family, meeting the most famous person on earth, a hero of huge magnitude, she marries him and starts the rocky road to find a real person behing the myth.

This book had me from the first word, it is well written, the characters are defined in such a way I felt I knew them. Ms Benjamin writes from the perspective of how Anne, Charles and the family were as real, emotional people. The story is based on their true lives but using historical fiction as her method of writing allows her to bring out all the emotions of their lives. We watch as Anne gains strength to be her own person at the same time she supports and makes excuses for her husband, who diminishes in his own life as a national hero as well as a personal hero and his inability to have any true interaction with her or his children. The kidnapping does not overpower the story but you do feel the anguish of having such a terrible event happen. It is a part of their story but far from the entire story.

This is an excellent book that is destined to be one of the best of 2013.
Book clubs will find a lot of challenging discussions about the Lindberghs
Marie D. (Waretown, NJ)

A spell-binding tale by a hero's wife!
From the first page, I was hooked and prepared to take flight with Anne Lindbergh on her incredible life journey. That she took that journey with America's hero, Charles Lindbergh, a man she loved at first sight, made the story historic and thrilling. It is a tale of commitment - to spouse, children and country. The kidnapping and murder of her first-born son, Charlie, is, of course, well-known, but as Ms. Benjamin recounts the events up to and following the death, so much more is revealed. It is gripping, to hear in the mother's words, her anguish over of the loss of the baby. The decades the Lindberghs spent dealing with national and international attention —which turned from admiration to hateful criticism — make the paparazzi of today seem mild-mannered! Mrs. Lindbergh managed to live a full and interesting life and to achieve literary success on her own, but she remained, always, the Aviator's Wife.
Judy B. (Marysville, OH)

Astonishing story about the Lindberghs
I highly recommend this fictionalized story of the Lindberghs (based on the author's deep research). It is astonishing because although everyone knows of the famous couple--Charles, an aviation pioneer, and Anne, writer of Gift from the Sea--and, of course, of the terrible kidnapping of their firstborn child--the whole story of their relationship is not widely known. It is a sad, rich story, told from Anne's point of view, beautifully written in words both accessible and poetic. A brief example: After Anne, age 19, meets Charles for the first time and he singles her out, asking her to fly with him, Anne "...slept lightly. As if...I had a dream beneath my pillow that I did not wish to crush." Anne was a remarkable woman and this is a remarkable book.

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