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Found this fascinating. While the story is told from Anne's point of view, it's also an adroit study of Charles Lindbergh ("Lucky Lindy), his effect on our nation and the world, while he struggled with his own private demons, ever increasing fame and decreasing privacy. Socially awkward, happiest when flying or with tinkering with machines, he's a man with a dark side, his own rules of right and wrong, no matter the cost. The protagonist, Anne, (the daughter of an ambassador, kind and highly intelligent, a graduate of Smith College), meets Lindbergh soon after his famous solo transatlantic flight and is powerfully drawn to him, a true hero in her mind and heart.
He was the most famous man in the world for many years and the author well illustrates the pros and cons he and Anne dealt with because of that. Like the very most famous people today, they couldn't leave their home without the paparazzi all over them. Wherever they went, every aspect of their life was dissected and the daily fodder for each and every newspaper and magazine. They craved privacy and found their truest escape in the sky, flying all over the world together. Anne became an accomplished aviatrix in her own right and was her husband's "crew." Enjoyed learning about all they did during that time.
At first I disliked how much Anne put herself down, i.e., questioning how she, of all people, was the one Lindbergh chose to marry. However, as the book moved along, her insecurities helped me to understand why she would do anything and everything Charles asked (demanded, really), even when it went against her own beliefs/feelings and best instincts (for example, Lindbergh's open antisemitism).
Anne's strength and her own convictions grow over the years, through the trials and tribulations she endures (most horrifically, the kidnapping...and the awful aftermath...of their first son, Charles, Jr., only 20 mos. old) throughout their long marriage, as she raises their surviving 5 children, mostly on her own...often not knowing where her husband is in the world. It's incredibly gratifying when Anne begins to blossom and comes into her own as a successful author ("Gift from the Sea") and independent woman, no longer cowered by her husband's authority or craving his approval. I felt like cheering.
If you like historical fiction...or even if you don't...this is a great "read."
Narrator: At first I didn't like the narrator, as I wanted a younger, softer voice to listen to...once I realized the story is is being told from the perspective of an elderly Anne, I fell into the rhythm of her voice and ended up liking her very much. That's saying a lot, because narration is one of my pet peeves. I've bought hundreds of audio books and have learned that poor narration can kill a good story faster than anything else.
64 of 65 people found this review helpful
This book begs for editing, as the author writes conversations that creep so slowly they become silly, and it sometimes seems like she was getting paid by the word. THAT said....
Give this book a chance, and it becomes a fascinating portrait of a smart, talented and accomplished woman, daughter of a politician and a suffragette, who marries the man of her dreams and is immediately strapped into the back seat; in the plane, in their life, and in the public's eye. Hard enough, in the 1930's, to be a woman who wants to use her brain. Add to that being married to the world's first superstar, hounded by media worldwide, envied by all for her 'luck', and being expected to be the perfect Mrs. while her own considerable skills as aviatrix and author are ignored. A dead baby, a Nazi-loving husband, secret wives and children in other countries, and a woman who takes back her power and her life without any bitterness, caring for her husband as he dies of cancer. It really becomes a great, big, generational saga.
As the author notes, writing a historical novel has an advantage over a biography; the author is not confined to depicting what happened when, but can insert emotions. The 'whys' of what happened and when can be explored, using diaries and info from friends and family. That is one of the reasons why I enjoy historical novels more than history, which I do love.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful
While I did enjoy this book, it wasn't an uplifting read. I chose this book having enjoyed "The Paris Wife" and wanted to read another similar biography-style book. It was well-written and brilliantly narrated, but I could count the happy moments in this book on one hand and oftentimes found myself browsing Audible's comedy section for my next read. That said, I tend to be particularly sensitive to the kind of doom and gloom that wouldn't phase the average reader, and despite my comments, I did enjoy learning about the lives of Anne and Charles. I much prefer expanding my knowledge of history through novels rather than text books!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Would you try another book written by Melanie Benjamin or narrated by Lorna Raver?
I didn't like the narrator so much. Every now and then I found she had quite a raspy voice,I liked the story, though I hesitated between 3 or 4 stars, but the book was quite captive all throughout the 400 pages, so that's why I decided to give it 4 stars.
What other book might you compare The Aviator's Wife to, and why?
The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan.
Would you listen to another book narrated by Lorna Raver?
No, I doon't think I would.
Could you see The Aviator's Wife being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?
Witherspoon Reece could be a good choice for starring in this film.
Any additional comments?
I very much liked the cover of the book, and display on my iPod Touch
1 of 1 people found this review helpful