**spoiler alert** I bought this book at work after reading the back cover a few times. All the reviews were comparing it to books like Jane Eyre and W**spoiler alert** I bought this book at work after reading the back cover a few times. All the reviews were comparing it to books like Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, which I love, so I figured, what the hell.
The first five chapters were basically a set-up for the real story. The story is about a famous author, Vida Winter, who finally wants to tell her real story before she dies. She hired Margaret Lea to write the biography. Before this she had given about 20 different versions of her life, not telling anyone the truth. I found this book compelling. I was sad to put it down to go to sleep. Mystery after mystery revealed itself with each chapter. The book was narrated by Margaret, except for the times when Vida was telling her story.
Toward the end, when the real secret was revealed, that Vida was NOT Adeline March, like we had thought. That there was not TWO girls at Angelfield, but THREE! The third being Ms. Winter who looked just like the twins (and was a relation, a child of Charlie's, who he did not know about; LONG story about Isabelle: the twins' mother and Charlie: uncle...father? Eep.) and often took one of their places now and again. When the fire happened and one of the twins died in it, she took the place of Adeline. The twin that survived was said to be Emmeline. The fire had damaged her and she had been an invalid. When I finished the book I suspected that the surviving twin was NOT Emmeline, but actually Adeline, who caused the fire because of jealousy of the attention Emmeline was giving to her baby and not to her. Of course, it's not really revealed that it's not Emmeline who survived, but there are obvious hints that it may just be Adeline.
I can't even begin to mention all the secrets that revealed itself throughout the course of the book. At some points I felt myself holding my breath because I felt that another bombshell was going to drop, that another secret would come about. I can't remember the last time a book affected me this way. I MUST read it again. I'm sure that now I'll pick up on a lot more, now that I know the truth....more
My reading of this book has been long overdue and I don't know what took me so long. I can't express just how surprised I was by this book; I expectedMy reading of this book has been long overdue and I don't know what took me so long. I can't express just how surprised I was by this book; I expected a lot of bullshit, but I was wrong. The honesty in this book was almost shocking; Jerry didn't hold back. I love the funny stories of him and Dean in the early part of their partnership and marked a few of them to go back and read when I need a laugh. Jerry Lewis has always made me laugh with his Idiot shtick and he made me laugh with the written word.
The admiration and love he had for Dean is unmistakable. He was just as mad as anyone that Dean wasn't getting the respect he deserved. Dean was always a clever and masterful comedian, but in a way that was subtle. He could spew off one-liners without even thinking about it.
The honesty and the love that went into this book is well worth five-stars. The last chapter and afterword had me in tears.
Like every other American, I learned about Lincoln in school. In reality, none us of really learned about Lincoln in school. We learned basic bullet pLike every other American, I learned about Lincoln in school. In reality, none us of really learned about Lincoln in school. We learned basic bullet points: He was born in a log cabin; he freed the slaves; he was assassinated. And were maybe made to memorize the Gettysburg Address.
As an adult, this baffles me. This Kentucky born, self-educated, rail splitter turned poetic President was not a simple man. I won't get into that, or else I'd be here all day.
My true fascination with Lincoln's life really came about in the past few years. I don't know, maybe it was the many, many documentaries I watched. But it felt like while researching every kind of political figure, world leader, or any other person who made a mark, I always came back to Lincoln. Maybe because he wasn't some great genius and that he really was just a man.
Lincoln only wanted to remembered for one great thing before he left this earth. I think the way we've remembered him and held him up on a pedestal - as almost a mythological figure - is surely humbling him, wherever he is.
This book is the perfect starting point to anyone wanting to learn about the real Lincoln. Not the Lincoln we learned about in elementary school or about the mythological saint-like figure America has made him out to be, but the man....more