“Black care rarely sits behind a rider whose pace is fast enough.” ― Theodore Roosevelt. That’s one of my favorite quotes from a very prolific President and author.
I had to mention this particular Roosevelt quote before I delved into my review of American Princess: A Novel of First Daughter Alice Roosevelt, because it is a famous TR quote and anyone reading Thornton’s book would be confused. Why? Thornton repeatedly uses the quote, but writes “BlackBIRDS rarely sits behind a rider whose pace is fast enough” which makes no sense at all.
Other famous Roosevelt quotes from FDR and Eleanor were also used and often misquoted and attributed to other Roosevelts than the one that said the quote. I know American Princess is a work of fiction and some liberties can be taken as expected, but when you can’t even get the quotes right, you have to wonder just how fast and loose the author used the facts. I’ve read about 60 books on the Roosevelts, so I’m a little picky about details.
That being said, the story of American Princess: A Novel of First Daughter Alice Roosevelt is very good; I’d give it 3 1/2 stars. Alice Roosevelt led a very interesting life and I don’t think anyone could screw that up. However, at times I don’t think Alice’s true spirit was captured. She’s kind of boring and vapid in parts, when in real life she was anything but that.
I don’t think the story portrayed Alice’s political astuteness very well at all. The book is fine if you know very little about the Roosevelts and just want a turn-of-the-century novel. I did end up buying this book for my Kindle when Amazon offered me a deal, but I’m not sure I’d buy it at full price.
If you liked this novel, you might also like Stephanie Marie Thornton’s And They Called it Camelot,a novel about America’s other political dynasty, the Kennedys.
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