The Aviator’s Wife

Thoughts tawbymb The Aviator’s Wife by Melanie Benjamin, Bantam Books 2013, 402 pages

The blurb from the back of the book (with my thoughts in parenthesis):

When Anne Morrow, a shy college senior with hidden literary aspirations, travels to Mexico City to spend Christmas with her family, she meets Colonel Charles Lindbergh, fresh off his celebrated 1927 solo flight across the Atlantic. Enthralled by Charles’ assurance and fame, Anne is certain the aviator has scarcely noticed her. But she is wrong. Charles sees in Anne a kindred spirit, a fellow adventurer and her world will be changed forever. (Not really, what he sees is a competent brood mare of ‘good’ stock.) The two marry in a headline-making wedding. In the years that follow, Anne becomes the first licensed female glider pilot in the United States. But despite this and other major achievements, she is viewed merely as the aviator’s wife. The fairy-tale life she once longed for will bring heartbreak and hardships, ultimately pushing her to reconcile her need for love and her desires for independence, and to embrace, at last, life’s infinite possibilities for change and happiness.

Despite admiring Anne for keeping up with everything her husband gave her to do and then finally realizing a dream of her own to truly write (which I do hope to read more someday), this book fell flat for me. For one, Charles was NOT a great guy. Two, this book suffers from the “tell rather than show” problem, in my humble opinion. I spent most of the book feeling sorry for Anne – for the way her husband treated her and how the paparazzi hassled her.

So, though this book is not my cup of tea and lacks pie references, I expect that many people will enjoy this book very much.

I missed the book club meeting so I have no idea what the others thought of this. I do think it has much to discuss so I do give it a recommendation as a good club selection.

Rating:  Three slices of pie.



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11 thoughts on “The Aviator’s Wife

  1. I felt ‘meh’ about this one, too, although I liked learning more about Anne Morrow Lindburgh. I read her ‘Gift from the Sea’ when I was a teenager and loved it, but had no idea she was the wife of the famous aviator and mom in the Lindburgh kidnapping.

  2. I have this on my TBR shelf for quite awhile now. Reading your review reminds me why I put it there and makes me wonder why I haven’t read it yet. Thanks for review!

  3. I didn’t read this one either, and probably only would if I had to for book club, too! Not sure why…The Lindberghs never captured my imagination? I don’t like to fly? I’m glad to know I haven’t missed out on a fantastic book, though!

    1. This author wrote the Mrs. Tom Thumb book, too which is on my tbr… Still might attempt someday because Lavinia Warren was from Middleboro.

  4. I have the Gift from the Sea, too. It’s been sitting in my TBR for years – but I had no idea she was married to Lindbergh. And this: “what he sees is a competent brood mare of ‘good’ stock”. He doesn’t sound like a nice guy at all.

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