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The Emancipator's Wife (A Novel of Mary Todd Lincoln) Mass Market Paperback – March 25, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
This book is insightful and thought-provoking. Hambly uses her fine ability to write sympathetic, yet very human characters to provide a credible portrait of Mary Todd Lincoln. Is this book the final word on Mrs. Lincoln? No. Do I have a greater awareness of the complexity of life in the American 19th century, especially from a woman's perspective? Yes!
Barbara Hambly is a historian by training and her ability to weave the details of a time and place make her historical (and fantasy!) books a pleasure to read. At times you can feel the oppressive humidity or find yourself wrapped in the sights and sounds of a parlor scene or find your heart beating in anticipation or fear along with Mrs. Lincoln.
Fans of Tracy Chevalier's novels may enjoy this title, as well as readers of Ahab's Wife by Sena Jester Naslund. If you find that you like Hambly's narrative style and American historical fiction, you might try her Benjamin January series that is set in New Orleans during the 1830s-40's. The first book in the series is A Free Man of Color.
A final note: If you are looking for a biographical work that focuses on life of Abraham Lincoln or a Civil War novel with lots of action scenes, this book is not for you. Nevertheless, I would encourage Civil War fiction readers to consider this book for the cultural context it provides to this pivotal period of American history.
Mary Todd Lincoln lived a fascinating life. She was well educated, connected to national political leaders through her own family and her family's friendships, and was allowed to partake in political maneuverings in ways that most women of her time were not. She lived through momentus historical times in the shaping of governments in several states and of the nation.
She also was an average woman with an average life full of losses due to violence, disease and the dangers of childbirth which were so common during this point in history. She was neglected as a child and had to manipulate and fight with numerous siblings and her step mother for attention. She was socially confined and limited by men and by the many women who subscribed to the male ideas of what female life should be. She competed with other "belles" of her Southern upper class for the attention of powerful men and for the glimmers of power that women connected to them were afforded.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I wasn't sure how I would like this novel but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Of course it's fictional but it's still informative and well written.Published 3 days ago by Wendy Price
Very interesting. I knew a lot of the different stories, and it was great to read the story with "some flesh" on it! Read morePublished 5 months ago by Sygne Dyda
It was an okay book and it kept my attention; however, it was too long and should have been edited down a bit.Published 7 months ago by Pamela Beckford
I do not understand why this book have so many good reviews. It is a listing of Mary Todds life, her and her husbands actions, historical events, and her illnesses. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Simira
I've always liked Barbara Hambly's writing, and Mary Todd Lincoln is certainly an interesting subject. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Avid reader
What a sad lady. What a truly sick lady.He was one of the few people who really listened to her.Published 8 months ago by Bonnie Bryant
This five star salute actually deserves a ten....written through the "voice" of Mary Todd Lincoln....you felt a part of the events. Read morePublished 8 months ago by CLTBB
Even though I have read a lot about Mary Todd Lincoln, I found this book, written as a novel, a good read.Published 8 months ago by Nancy Sackrison