The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Biography 372 p. (includes bibliography and notes) YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction

A very readable biography about Charles Lindbergh. It grabs you in the beginning when it talks about his grandfather’s arrival in the U.S. and how he accidentally cuts off his arm. The story is important because Charles believes that he has inherited his grandfather’s bravery and confidence. I’ve always liked to read about Lindbergh, maybe because he is from Minnesota, or maybe because there seems to be something heroic about him. He became an instant celebrity after his non-stop flight from New York to Paris, but he didn’t always enjoy the attention. After his son was kidnapped and the trial was over, the attention had become overwhelming and he moved his family to England.

The most interesting parts for me were the new information concerning the controversy involving his following of Hitler and pushing the “America First” talking point. Many people who had before loved him now hated him–cities even changed the names of streets and schools that had been named after him. And he completely believed in eugenics and white supremacy, so when reading this it was easy to go from being in awe to being disgusted by him. There are even secrets I knew nothing about that were revealed in the end. All in all, a very well written and enjoyable read.

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