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The Gilded Cage: A Novel of Chicago Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I was intrigued by The Gilded Cage as I grew up not too far from Chicago and to this day it remains one of my favorite cities. To see this side of it was both eye-opening and fascinating. For one thing, I never realized the role that Chicago played in the Civil War or how dingy and shabby it was in many ways before the Great Fire. It certainly progressed a long way in the years following that devastation. Given that I now live in Kentucky, I also enjoyed the connections to my adopted home state and the glimpses into its mood during the Civil War.
Bottom Line: The characters in The Gilded Cage will settle in your heart, and you will find yourself turning the pages to see what happens to them. Not only that, but the city of Chicago itself becomes a main character that looks considerably different than the Chicago we recognize today. I would say that, as a novel, The Gilded Cage is a bit disjointed and seems to have a difficult time deciding if it’s a story or a factual account. But if you consider it to be a storified biographical sketch of a city and its key players, it becomes a light and entertaining way to ingest history and meet historical figures with whom you may not have already been familiar.
(I received a complimentary copy of this book.)
The main character, Cissy Palmer, showed strength and individuality more than most women had during this period.
Honestly, when I first started this book I thought I wouldn't like it, but I grew to love it. It has so much history that I couldn't help but to fall in love. The characters are real and bright and really paint a picture of the upper and lower classes and how they lived. This book was a real treasure. It was written so well and kept me reading. It made me mad, sad, happy, shocked, and so many other things. It was really a great book. I loved the history, the story, and the characters. Honestly, I loved it all! I will be going and researching Chicago after this. I mean, how could I not?...Stormi
This novel will take the reader from Chicago's very beginning as a backwater, rather smelly town through to the Columbian Exposition held there in 1893. Although many of the people were real as was the timeline-the author has written a fascinating story around all these events. Rich vs poor--until Cissy Hamilton took matters into her own hands and although never a suffragette-worked steadfastly in the interests of women and poor women. She actually believed way back then in equal work should get equal pay. We are still trying for that today! That this woman defied the class rules of her station in life and in many cases her husband (who luckily doted on her and was by far the richest man in Chicago at the time) was nothing short of a miracle. Unlike other women of her social standing--she believed that the wealth should be used to help the poor especially in times of trouble. Cissy did not talk much about it until the Chicago Fire--but she certainly walked the walk.