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The Vanderbilt Women: Dynasty of Wealth, Glamour, and Tragedy
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The Vanderbilt Women: Dynasty of Wealth, Glamour, and Tragedy

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3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  76 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Lucius Beebe said that "The nearest thing to a royal family that has ever appeared on the American scene was the Vanderbilts ... their vendettas, their armies of servitors, partisans and sycophants, their love affairs, scandals, and shortcomings, all were the stuff of an imperial routine."Stasz reveals new facts and insights into the fascinating lives of three generations ...more
Paperback, 500 pages
Published December 1st 1999 by iUniverse (first published January 1st 1981)
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Jill Hutchinson
The Vanderbilt dynasty makes for an interesting saga and this book pretty much covers the women of that family who were influential in their own realm. It does, however, get bogged down in two areas with more detail than the reader needs to know.......the decor of the mansions and the woman's movement at the turn of the century. It slows down the narrative and the readers might find themselves skipping through those sections.
That weakness aside, it is a fascinating look at American royalty and
...more
Simon
Interesting for the most part (especially when dealing with Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney), but the narrative falls apart when Stasz discusses Gloria Vanderbilt Cooper in the final chapters. Ms. Cooper sensibly declined to turn over her memories to Ms. Stasz, preferring to write them out herself.

Stasz spends a lot of time in psychohistory, although she is generally pretty open about her conclusions on certain matters being conjectural. I do wish she had left out the twee chapter headings, which pr
...more
Judy
An interesting multiple biography of some of the more interesting and colorful women members of the Vanderbilt family. Includes information on Gertude Vanderbilt Whitney who was a noted sculptor and who established the Whitney Museum of American Art, Alva Smith Vanderbilt who played a significant role in the women's suffrage movement in the United States, and numerous others. A family tree would have helped to keep the relationships in perspective--especially since many of the women shared the s ...more
Sharon
Great book. I'm a bit slanted in my opinion as I'm a real lover of biographies: especially well written biographies. This is a well written book and keeps your interest. Not enough biographers know how to keep you glued to your seat and this one does. The only negative about it is that on occasion the way it's organized has you flipping to the chart in the front to remember which Vanderbilt cousin, father, etc. is who: but that's not too much of a challenge!
Lisa Michele
I am still blazing through all my Vanderbilt books. I like this one because it focused on the women - who are compelling, but not necessarily Vanderbilts by blood. Did you know Anderson Cooper is a Vanderbilt? I didn't.
Rebecca
This book was interesting but overall too slow moving. It also would have benefited from a family tree in the beginning, given that everyone had the same names.
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