A Novel

Book - 2006
Average Rating:
Rate this:
An engrossing novel about Mary Todd Lincoln -- one of history's most misunderstood and enigmatic women. Writing from Bellevue asylum -- where the shrieks of the other inmates keep her awake at night -- a famous widow can finally share the story of her life in her own words. From her tempestuous childhood in a slaveholding Southern family through the opium-clouded years after her husband's death, we are let into the inner, intimate world of this brave and fascinating woman. Intelligent, unconventional--and, some thought, mad--she held spiritualist séances in the White House, ran her family into debt with compulsive shopping, negotiated with conniving politicians, and raised her young sons in the nation's capital during the bloodiest war this country has ever known. She was also a political strategist, a comfort to wounded soldiers, a supporter of emancipation, the first to be calledFirst Lady, and a wife and mother who survived the loss of three children and the assassination of her beloved husband. Interwoven with her memories of the past, she describes life in the asylum, where the treatment for lunacy is bland food, cold baths, and the near-lethal doses of chloral hydrate. It is here where we meet her friends, the anorectic Minnie Judd, who is starving herself to win the affection of her beautiful husb∧ and to Myra Bradwell, the suffragist lawyer who helps her win her freedom. A dramatic tale filled with passion and depression, poverty and ridicule, infidelity and redemption, this is the unforgettable story of Mary Todd Lincoln.
Publisher: MacAdam/Cage, 2006
ISBN: 9781931561631
Branch Call Number: AF NEWM


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Dec 11, 2009

A tragic, but captivating novel about the world from Mary Lincoln's eyes.

Jan 30, 2007

Mary Todd Lincoln knew that she was always going to be a President''s wife. And she knew that Stephen Douglas wasn''t going to get her to Washington City, even though he was one of her great admirers ? he was a democrat, after all! She knew as soon as she set her eyes on one of the homeliest men she had ever seen, that he was the one that was going to fulfill her aspirations. And what started out as a very passionate affair led her to the greatest honor she ever knew - Mrs. A. Lincoln the wife of the man who freed the slaves. But her extreme emotions would also lead to her greatest sorrow and shame. Mary was someone who could love too much in an age when emotions from women denoted madness and should not be displayed. Her grief over the deaths of three sons was all consuming. And along with her great intelligence and wit, she lived a life that men thought contemptible and tawdry in a very public way. I have come to admire her frankness, her generosity, and her willingness to reveal her inner life in an era when women did not have the freedom of being individuals. She always remained true to herself and the love of a great man.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


No similar edition of this title was found at LCCL.

Try searching for Mary to see if LCCL owns related versions of the work.

To Top