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Publisher's Summary

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.

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  • Debbie
  • Toney, Alabama
  • 11-19-15

Second in Series, Historical Tale of Glassblowers

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 . . .

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 03-19-16

3.5 @ $7.34 an OK Listen

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.

7 of 13 people found this review helpful

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wow

The connection I formed with the characters is unlike anything I've ever experienced. It felt as though I was there with them. Celebrating their joy and sobbing at their sorrows and loss. And how I became whenever one was slighted, as though they were friends of mine to protect!
Well done, Petra. And on to book 3!

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Wanda finds a purpose in life.

The Saga of the Steinmmann Sisters continues with the adulthood of Wanda. The family tree now has a branch in America that is growing and searching for what life means. Marie comes to visit Ruth in New York and the Saga continues. Narration was good and the story held my attention.

  • Overall

Captivating

Such a good story. I can't wait to listen to the next one, though I am sure I'll be sad when it's over.

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surprise ending

The beginning was a little slow but it soon picked up speed and I couldn't put it down!

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The American Lady

Is there anything you would change about this book?

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.

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  • j
  • 03-30-16

Absolutely pleased with this series!

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.

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A love saga of a families connection

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.

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perfect read

simple creative life, first book was as good as second ,can't wait for third. loved it.

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  • jenbo
  • 06-27-15

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.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful