Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker

You know, when you find your genre, you can’t help but read everything in it!! I was gifted 3 months of audibles for my birthday. Let me tell you, the pressure to use my credit well was intense. Who wants to waste a credit on a poorly written (and poorly read) book? (Side note: you can return audbile books!) Anyway, I took to instagram to try and find the best book for my credit. And let me tell you… I DID!!

Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker is a superbly written and extremely well researched novel. Throughout the entire thing, I kept wondering and hoping that the main character was real… and she was! (Which I learned in the author’s note section.)

As a former history teacher, I don’t want some fluffy novel that just happens to be set in an historic time period. I want the history woven with the story. Jennifer Chiaverini did just that. She included historic details and her character’s insights into those details. You can tell she put a lot of time and effort into her research and the creation of her novel. Personally, I think the tell-tell sign of a great novel is when the content inspires you to read more about the topic. I am looking forward to reading the memoir written by the dress making, Elizabeth Keckley.

Awesomeness:

  1. This novel is well-researched. The accuracy of the history is it’s best selling point!
  2. The characters are extremely well-developed.

Cautions:

  1. It is a Civil War novel and as such the issues of slavery will be addresses. In some cases, slave experiences are recounted. Nothing very distasteful, but real nonetheless.
  2. The difficulties faced by runaway slaves and freedmen in the north are mentioned. Nothing extreme, but if a younger audience is reading, you will need to be prepared to discuss contraband camps and the fugitive slave law.

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