THE LOVELIEST WOMAN IN AMERICA
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022
Rating: 3 Cups
Rosamund Pinchot Gaston was a daughter of privilege. Discovered by a famous director on a transatlantic cruise at the age of nineteen, she was famous for her beauty. Married young to the black sheep of the equally prestigious Gaston clan, she was doomed to unhappiness.
Bill Pinchot was Rosamund’s son, a rolling stone who never lived up to his true potential. Patricia (Bibi) Gaston is the daughter of Bill and granddaughter of Rosamund. She had no idea of the Pinchot side of her family until adulthood and knew little of her grandmother until her father’s death.
The Gastons and the Pinchots were two prominent families producing governors, politicians and the founder of the United States Forestry Service. Both families were also dysfunctional, featuring infidelities, alcoholism, mental illness, and suicide. Ms. Gaston gets to know her family, most prominently her famous grandmother through diaries and scrapbooks.
The subjects of Ms. Gaston’s book are very interesting and feature some of the most famous people of the first half of the twentieth century. Rosamund Pinchot became famous early in life, married unhappily, and tried to hold her life together unsuccessfully. Bill Gaston never seemed to grow up and Bibi’s life was molded by her grandmother, even though she died more than twenty years before Bibi was born. The family tree promised in the finished edition will help the reader keep track of the players, and there are many photos to illustrate the lives of all three of the subjects. The writing style can be a bit difficult as the author jumps from one subject to another throughout the book. The prose can be a bit dramatic at times. I prefer a more linear style. An index at the end would also help. Overall, this is a story of interesting people in interesting times.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books