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  • Writer's pictureThe Bossy Bookworm

Review of American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld

ICYMI: This fictionalized version of a first lady's personal history from the talented Curtis Sittenfeld was a five-star read for me.

In American Wife, Sittenfeld takes a few facts from Laura Bush's life and the Bush family history and creates an alternate story--one that's plausibly similar in a sense to Laura Bush's own, yet wholly Sittenfeld’s creation.

I was continually captivated by Sittenfeld's story. She made me feel that I deeply understood the potential circumstances of how a woman without grand ambitions might arrive in the White House as first lady, how she might continue having liberal leanings while supporting her conservative husband, how she might do so little with so much potential power, and how she might love her husband the president despite his many faults. I found this absolutely intriguing.

Sittenfeld has a fascinating way of turning situations that feel familiar on their heads and illuminating unexpected aspects while making you think—and wrapping it all in a compelling novel.

I loved this.

Do you have any Bossy thoughts about this book?

I liked Curtis Sittenfeld's peek at prep schools in Prep, and I loved her short story collection You Think It, I'll Say It. It was a #fivestarbookreview for me.

In Rodham, a book I own, which means it's languishing, unread, in my enormous to-be-read pile, Sittenfeld imagines the trail Hillary Rodham Clinton might have blazed if she'd broken up with Bill and forged ahead solo, led by her iron determination and unfailing ambition.


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