Title: The General’s Women
Author: Susan Wittig Albert
Publisher: Persevero Press
Publication Date: March 7, 2017
Genre: Biographical/Historical Fiction
A compelling story of love, betrayal, and ambition by New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert, The General’s Women tells the story of two women–Kay Summersby and Mamie Eisenhower—in love with the same man: General Dwight Eisenhower.
Set during the chaotic years of World War II, The General’s Women tells the story of the conflicted relationship between General Dwight Eisenhower and Kay Summersby, his Irish driver/aide, and the impact of that relationship on Mamie Eisenhower and her life in Washington during the war. Told from three alternating points of view (Kay’s, Ike’s, and Mamie’s), the novel charts the deepening of the relationship as Ike and Kay move from England (1942) to North Africa (1942-43) to England, France, and Germany before and after the Normandy landing (1944-45). At the end of the war, Ike is faced with the heart-wrenching choice between marrying Kay and a political future.
The story continues into the post-war years, as Ike (returning to Mamie) becomes Army Chief of Staff, president of Columbia University, Supreme Commander of NATO, and president of the United States. Kay, meanwhile, struggles to create a life and work of her own, writing two memoirs: the first (Eisenhower Was My Boss, 1948) about her war work with Ike; the second (Past Forgetting, 1976) about their love affair. An author’s note deals with the complicated question of the truth of Kay’s story, as it finally appears in the posthumously-published Past Forgetting.
“The General’s Women is an engrossing and humanizing account
of a love that blossomed during wartime and scandalized a nation…
A historical novel that is sympathetic, satisfying, and heartbreaking.”
“A mature, gripping emotional drama… The arc of this multifaceted
novel follows the three main characters [Ike, Kay, and Mamie] and
a host of secondary ones through the war and back into civilian life.
At every point Albert smoothly incorporates an obviously vast
amount of research into a tale of raw emotional conflict that
can make for some wonderfully uncomfortable reading.”
About the Author
A NYT bestselling author, Susan’s books include biographical fiction (A Wilder Rose 2013, currently under film option; Loving Eleanor 2016; and The General’s Women 2017). Her mystery fiction includes the bestselling China Bayles mysteries; The Darling Dahlias; the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter; and the Robin Paige Victorian/Edwardian mysteries written with her husband, Bill Albert. Working together, the Alberts have also written over 60 young adult novels.
Susan’s most recent nonfiction work includes two memoirs: An Extraordinary Year of Ordinary Days and Together, Alone: A Memoir of Marriage and Place. Her earlier nonfiction work includes Work of Her Own, a study of women who left their careers, and Writing From Life: Telling Your Soul’s Story, a guidebook for women memoirists. That book led to the founding of the Story Circle Network in 1997. She has edited two anthologies for the Story Circle Network: With Courage and Common Sense (2004) and What Wildness Is This: Women Write about the Southwest (2007). She currently serves as editor of StoryCircleBookReviews and co-coordinator of SCN’s Sarton Women’s Book Awards.
She and Bill live in the Texas Hill Country, where she writes, gardens, and tends a varying assortment of barnyard creatures.
Follow the tour
Friday, August 4
Review at A Holland Reads
Saturday, August 5
Feature at Passages to the Past
Monday, August 7
Review at Pursuing Stacie
“A brilliant work of biographical fiction that will fascinate
WW2 history fans. It tells the remarkable true story of General
Dwight D Eisenhower and his relationship with his Irish-born
driver and secretary, Kay Summersby, and with his longtime
wife Mamie. It faithfully shines a light on the hidden relationship
of the man behind the D-Day landings and what he got up to
while 3,000 miles from his wife. A must read!”
—Kieron Wood, author of Ike’s Irish Lover: The Echo of A Sigh