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Fantastic book...especially if you've listened to John Adams like I did. I must comment once again on the remarkable and mellifluous voice of Cassandra Campbell. As soon as I noticed she was the reader I was sold. I highly recommend that you look for her when choosing a download.
Anyway, Abigail Adams. What an amazing woman she was. This book presents the other side of the the John Adams story. How she coped and ran the family during his extended absenses as a career public servant.
It was interesting to learn how archaic society's view of women was during that time and how she struggled for her own identity within those constraints.
From the book, John Adams, and hearing about the love letters they wrote, I had the impression that life between the two was all lovey dovey but it really wasn't according to this. Additionally, the book details the sensitive perspective of the family trials and tribulations as they relate to family relationships. Again, from the John Adams book, I knew of the key personal tragedies but they were told from John's male perspective. Not that any of the events were less painful to him but they were written with less emotion that a female does (we're just wired different).
I was most impressed with Abigail's financial savvy and contribution to the family's wealth through investing and her own business. This woman could do it all...and she did!
Remarkable...a life well lived.
22 of 23 people found this review helpful
I really enjoyed this biography because it makes life in Revolutionary America and the early days of forming the US vivid and alive. The book, drawn from over two thousand of Abigail's letters, lets the reader actually hear a living voice of the times. It literally made me laugh at how outspoken, gossipy and intense these women were. Holton offers a totally different historic perspective because the book is filled with back stories of life at home in the midst of war and post revolution recovery. The stories of Mrs. Washington, cultural protocol, social requirements and the limited rights of women were all fascinating.
I think that this book is the perfect pair-up to be read after David McCullough's excellent bio John Adams. The books have the same story line or trajectory, but very different tones and overall feelings. By reading both books I think I now have a broader picture and a better understanding of life in early America. The book was well written and totally engaging. Campbell's narration was good.
So often history is written about men, with women, if they show up, playing quiet supporting roles. It was refreshing to hear Abigail's clear voice in her own words and to learn about how she saw the world and viewed the events happening around her. To me, she was a formidable powerhouse who lived life boldly in spite of the social constraints of the time. If you love books that bring history to life this is an excellent choice. Abigail Adams leaps right off the page. I loved it.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful