Tempestuous and beautiful Wanda Miles, daughter of Ruth and Stephen Miles (or so she thinks), aspires to more than the life of a debutante, but the trouble is she doesn't know precisely what she wants. Then her aunt Marie, the family's renowned glassblower, arrives from Lauscha, Germany, and Wanda decides that learning about her ancestry may hold the key to her future. When Marie accidentally reveals a long-held secret about Wanda's parents, Wanda goes to Lauscha to unravel the truth.
While Marie finds herself increasingly swept up in New York City's bohemian social scene - catching the eye of a handsome young Italian in the process - Wanda explores a past she never knew in the village of her mother's youth - and begins to build a life that she never expected.
A sweeping tale that takes listeners from the small town of Lauscha to the skyscrapers of New York and the sun-kissed coast of Italy, The American Lady is a tribute to the enduring power of family and what we'll do in the name of love.
©2002 Petra Durst-Benning (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved. English translation copyright © 2015 by Samuel Willcocks.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
From Germany to New York, it seems as though Ruth, one of the three sisters from Lauscha, Germany of the famous Steinmann glassblowing family, has forgotten her humble beginnings . . . In a slump herself, her sister, Marie, leaves Germany to come to New York for a visit . . . finding a kinship with her niece, Wanda, who is trying hard to find her own way . . . amidst ridicule and opposition from her wealthy family, particularly her mother . . . Wanda introduces her aunt to some of her unorthodox friends . . . which leads to some bizarre behavior (in my opinion) . . . I was not fond of the casual attitude towards sex in the book . . . but wasn't surprised by it . . . having lived in Germany twice . . . it didn't deter me from enjoying the book . . . which is rich in details of early 1900s New York and Germany . . . and the contrasts between the two . . . and the vast difference between the working class and the upper classes of society . . . and what those of privilege are willing to do to stay on top . . . this book is mostly the story of Marie and of Wanda . . . don't miss it . . . it is wonderful . . . I have already moved on to the final book in the trilogy . . .
I love all genres of books. However, when I listen to audio books as I clean, garden, drive they are better with a lot of heat!
This wasn't bad listen and it was a pretty easy listen. It continues on from book 1 in the trilogy beginning in a small town in Germany where three sisters originated then on to New York where one of the sisters moved 16 years earlier. The youngest sister decided (actually was convinced she needed to visit), her New York sister. The younger sister fell in love with an Italian Count whom she married and moved on to Italy where tragedy befalls her. The story ends back in Germany. There's more to the book than this though. I felt that some aspects of the book went onto great details but other important events were just skimmed over.
I was annoyed about the historical inaccuracy's of the book. Although I seem to be the only one that noticed. Telephones were only invented in 1897 with the first intercity calls made in the USA in 1911. Transatlantic calls were not made until 1927. As the book is set in 1911 and gives the impression that the use of a telephone was common place. There were others but I won't write any spoilers here.
Not overly captivating but with that being said, I will probably read the 3rd in the series out of curiosity.
Kristin Watson Heintz was good with the delivery of the story.
I liked this book less than the first. Again the vernacular was all wrong and the story was getting a little far fetched for the time period.
I was skeptical at first, felt the beginning of the first novel in the series was a bit slow but quickly became engrossed in this wonderful story. I haven't been able to stop listening since starting the series.
Blood is thicker than water. But love of a child from a step parent can be just as strong. I have been pulled into this story from book one. The writer did an excellent job of character building. Feathering the back stories in enough to let you feel you know these people. And care to find out where the story takes them.
Enduring Family Relationships
There are many characters here of note. I think that more character development could have been useful and the history of the time period. Understanding that being a free spirit was "normal" and that Americans were "testing" various thoughts and behaviors. Given that Pandora was my favorite.
I think she loses her accents sometimes. Otherwise I think she is a good story teller.
No. It was not riveting enough, except at the end.
This is not as strong as the first book, which is no surprise. However, it is worth reading to continue the saga to the third book which is strong. I do not want to give anything away except this: If you have a sister or sisters you will totally understand and identify with the relationships between these sisters and their strengths.
A delightful read. Thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Wanda, Ruth's daughter and to see how she interfaced with her aunts and mother. This book was even better than the first, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It so was interesting that I purchased the audible and Kindle books and used Whispersync so I could keep up with what was going on throughout my day. Great series. I will definitely read more of Ms. Durst-Benning's books!
"Bring on the next one!"
Whilst I enjoyed this book it wasn't as compelling as the first in the same series.
I'm keeping an eye out for the next one on audiobook.
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