9 Following

Clif's Book World

Adventures from reading books captured within short reviews.

The Aviator's Wife (Audio) - Melanie Benjamin This is the story of a marriage that just happens to also include the American hero of the 1927 to 1930s era. The book is written in the first person voice of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Charles Lindbergh's wife. Thus it reads as a memoir if one forgets that it's a novel. The author did a credible job of capturing the emotion of how their relationship must have been in real life.

Their marriage was perceived by the public as a storybook romance, and in many ways it was. But the private life of Charles Lindbergh contained flaws that became very public in 2004 (after his death) when it was announced that he had fathered seven children with three different women outside of his married relationship that produced six children (including the 1932 kidnap victim).

I find it inconceivable how such a public figure who was so closely watched by the press could get away with such a duplicitous life. What we don't know is whether his wife Anne knew about his other women and children. The fact that she asked not to be buried next to her husband gives us a hint that perhaps she did know. In this book Anne learns about the other women shortly before Charles' death, but in the Epilog the author admits that this was her speculative invention.

Although today Anne Lindbergh is perhaps most often recalled as the suffering mother of a kidnapped baby, she was also the daughter of an ambassador, a skilled pilot in her own right, and a critically acclaimed author. This book provides the reader with an emotional profile of a strong woman who deserves to be remembered for her own abilities and strengths. Unfortunately, in the future she will probably also be remembered as the wife of an unfaithful husband.

The following link is the review that caused me to be interested in this book:
Charles Lindbergh’s Secret German Mistresses in Truth and Fiction

What I found interesting about this review is that the news of Lindbergh's multiple families was widely published in Europe while nary a word of it was mentioned in the American press. Is it possible that the American mainstream press still wants to protect the image of the icon of an American hero?