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The Lindbergh Nanny

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This was an interesting historical fiction novel.

The book is narrated by Charlie Lindbergh's nanny, Betty Gow before he was kidnapped and months later found dead.

in 1939, Betty Gow is taking care of the baby when he disappears from his crib at night. A ramson note is left behind. When the police start investigating the crime, they immediately zoom in on Betty and make her a suspect. She was the last person to see the baby alive, she was a single woman going out with a Norwegian sailor named Henry, and she was a foreigner.

In Betty's words, she describes how she got the position of a nanny. She didn't like Charles Lindbergh. She thought he was an odd man. She especially didn't like the way he treated baby Charlie. The child's mother, Anne Morrow was a nice woman but Betty couldn't understand how she could leave the child for weeks at a time and then wondered why the child would cling to the nanny and not to her when she came back.

The Lindbergh Nanny had my attention from the very first page since it's based on a truly horrible crime with too many unanswered questions. Was it an inside job? Probably. Do I believe Betty had something to do with it? I doubt it.

Cliffhanger: No

4/5 Fangs

A complimentary copy was provided by Minotaur Books via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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The kidnapping of the Lindbergh Baby was the crime of the century.  One that so shook the world that stories of the child snatching still reverberate today, nearly 100 years later.  Mariah Fredericks dives into the mystery of what happened to little Charles Lindbergh in her new novel, The Lindbergh Nanny, which examines the crime through the eyes of the child's caretaker, Betty Gow.  

The book follows Betty as she takes on the job of caring for the son of "American royalty" - Charles Lindbergh and wife Anne Morrow - and delves into her personal and professional relationships throughout her years spent in the Lindbergh home.  This novel is primarily an exposition of Betty's own life, with her work as the Lindbergh nanny always hovering in the background.  It concludes with the kidnapping of young Charles from his bedroom, and the subsequent investigation into his disappearance.  It examines how Betty, who was the last person to see Charles before he was taken, was considered a suspect, and how she blamed herself for the crime in that she left the bedroom shutters unlatched, thus allowing easy access to Charles' bedroom.

The Lindbergh Nanny is one of those historical novels that keeps readers on the periphery of a well-known event, inviting them to follow along as the events play out, but never really building intimacy between the characters and reader.  I personally prefer greater characterization in my historical fiction novels - I want to see notable people brought vividly to life - but if you like historical fiction that almost nearly reads as nonfiction, The Lindbergh Nanny may be right up your alley.  Fredericks does embellish a bit in her narrative, as outlined in the Author's Note, but many other details of Betty's time as the Lindbergh's nanny are kept true to the record.
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Liked it enough. It’s not bad but it didn’t dazzle me as much as I had expected. Didn’t enjoy the first person POV. I did appreciate a new perspective in history overall.
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Thank you, NetGalley, for an e-ARC of The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks.
I've always been intrigued by the Lindbergh kidnapping, and this book did not disappoint. Told from the perspective of the baby's nanny, the reader is given insight into the family and events surrounding the kidnapping. This book was well researched and well written.
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The Lindbergh Nanny tells the forgotten story of Charles Lindbergh. It tells how a nanny was suspected of kidnapping and murdering Charles. While I do not if the novel’s take on the crime is true, it was still very interesting. I like how it focused on the nanny’s love for Charles and how she tries to find out who killed him. The story was very emotional and heart-wrenching. It was also very well-written and filled with meticulous detail. I am interested to research more on the subject. I recommend this for fans of The Perfect Nanny, The Black Dahlia, and Slammerskin!
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This book was almost a 5-star read for me, and that's not a rating I use often. I am irrationally drawn to tragedy and true crime, so I NEEDED to get my hands on a copy of this book as soon as I saw it was being published. I appreciate NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with this pre-release copy. The following opinions are my own. Historical facts are not treated as spoilers.

The heartbreaking story of Charlie Lindbergh is told in an emotive and compelling way through the eyes of his nanny (or nurse as she would have been referred to at the time), Betty Gow. I loved the way the author created each character as a realistic, imperfect person. The reader is able to sympathize with each person involved, all while wondering which of them is at fault when poor Charlie is found murdered.

Kudos to Ms Fredericks for writing Betty's inner struggles and uncertainty about the kidnapping in a compelling way. Betty wonders if she is the one who made it possible. Did she fail poor little Charlie? Then she considers each of her friends and coworkers. Was it them? Who betrayed the cherubic baby? This could have easily bogged down the story....except it doesn't. We wonder right along with Betty, was it them? We stand next to her, longing to solve the mystery.

Only a couple things kept me from giving this book 5-stars. The most significant issue I had was with a historical figure, who in real life had a wife and two children, being portrayed as a homosexual. I understand that historical novelists are writing fiction, but where the truth is known, I feel it should be respected. Fill gaps, but don't change who a person was just to make them more interesting to the modern mindset. The author has clearly done exhaustive research and worked tirelessly to recreate the time period and events, so the decision to write this man in a false way stood out as odd compared to the remainder to the story.

Overall, this was a captivating read - I hesitate to say enjoyable, given the subject matter - but I did find myself leaving a gathering early because I just wanted to go home and read. I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys stories about fascinating women. Betty Gow was certainly one who coped with horrific circumstances with dignity and grace.
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I received a free e-copy of The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks from NetGalley for my honest review.

An interesting and in-depth story that combines fiction and fact, pertaining to the kidnapping of the Lindergh's son.  This stories focus is about the Nanny that loved Charlie.  The story of all the details from her past all the way up to how she met the Lindbergh family.
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In 1930, no man was more heroic than Charles Lindbergh, and no child was more interesting than his. Betty Gow was brought into service for the Lindberghs to care for the most famous baby in the world. And less than two years later, the boy is abducted and subsequently murdered and left in a ditch to be found two and a half months later. This is the story of Betty's employment before, during, and after the abduction of Charles Lindbergh Jr. 

There's no real closure on the case in the real world, though this novel poses some interesting ideas. The man who police arrested and tried swore to his innocence until the day he died. 91 years later, the questions will never be able to be answered. But the story is interesting. And whose perspective could be the most interesting? Obviously, the nanny. 

I originally got this as an ARC, but got easily distracted by other books. I was clearly not in the mood to dive into this controversial semi-cold case. I had the library's copy of the book out as soon as it was in, but I was distracted again. But this time, I knew I needed to just bite the bullet and get done. 

The book is good. The beginning is slow, but once you've gotten to the actual event itself, the story progresses really well, and gets really interesting. I'm not going to lie, I actually had a nightmare related to this book. But that's definitely indicative of how into the story I really got by the end of it. I appreciate that the author included both a note about the really Betty Gow, as well as what she's changed, and how much is truly accurate.  

I received an Advanced Reader Copy via NetGalley in return for sharing my thoughts on this book. Thanks to the author and publisher for this opportunity!
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The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks 🧠🧠🧠🧠/5
I'm not going to lie - I had zero idea that the Lindbergh kidnapping was a real thing. A few chapters in, I found I was struggling with the pace of the book and I decided (for once!) to read the book's synopsis. This then led me to a deep dive via google into the real life tragedy. Once I had a better understanding that this was based on real events, with a fictional twist - I was hooked. Mystery, true crime and historical fiction all mixed into one!
I'll never stop being amazed at the amount of research that HF writers do. This book was no exception.

Thank you to St. Martin's Press, Minotaur Books & Netgalley for an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
*was published in November 2022
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This turned into such a fascinating story. I'm not familiar with the LIndbergh case in real life, so I came into this one without many preconceived expectations. It was a bit of a slow start - and keeping track of the different characters and locations/houses was a bit difficult at times. Overall, the story is heartbreaking and I really appreciated the way the author stayed true to the story while using fiction to weave perspective together. The appendix about Betty Gow and fact vs fiction at the end was really well done and helped to connect the dots. I also found myself researching the case to read more about it. 

Overall, a well done historical fiction narrative based on an event that hasn't been as written about in recent memory. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and review this book!
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I had heard of the Lindbergh kidnapping/murder of Charles Lindbergh Jr. that took place on March 1, 1932, but this story was told from the perspective of Elizabeth Gow, Charlie's nanny/nurse. We learn a bit about her life in general, but the rest of the story is her caring for Charlie, the kidnapping, investigation and trial. Betty Gow was a suspect and the questioning of her was ruthless. They tried to make her confess to being immoral, associating with criminals and even harassed her about the death of her brother. She was the last person to be with baby Charles before his disappearance so I understand the suspicion, but both Charles Lindbergh and his wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh were positive that she had nothing to do with the kidnapping. Of course, the suspicion followed her and forever changed her life.

The story is told in the first person through Betty Gow, and took me through the time leading up to the kidnapping; the kidnapping and, the subsequent police investigations afterward. Betty returns to Scotland and is unable to find employment. It is two years later before an arrest is made and Betty goes back to the US to testify at the trial. There are many secondary characters in the book that were also involved in the real case, and many that fleshed out the story. I did find the story dragged at times, especially with all these characters. I wanted to learn more about the case and I did, but it was not gripping or thrilling as other reviewers stated. Mariah Fredericks does a wonderful job of mixing facts with fiction. She has done a through job researching this case to present us with an interesting historical who done it. Included in the author’s notes, she differentiates between the facts and her added fiction element. Overall, this was an interesting book
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The Lindbergh Nanny by Marian Fredericks. Pub Date: November 15, 2022. Rating: 3 stars. A compelling story written about the famous kidnapping of Charles Lindbergh's child, this novel is told through the narrative of the family nanny, Betty Gow. Based on facts interwoven with fiction, this novel was well researched and portrayed a famous family during a time of despair. Betty Gow was never presented as perfect, had flaws but did her job with grace and compassion. The author did a fabulous job with the research for this novel, but honestly due to the famous nature of the story I already knew what happened and found it interesting it took almost half of the book to get to the point/end result. Overall, I liked this story but did not love it. Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for this e-arc in exchange for my honest review. #netgalley
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The author did a fantastic job with her  research on this famous case. But unfortunately, for me, the facts were just not written in a way that intrigued me. I love this time period and still couldn't get into the story. I found myself skimming through parts in search of interesting chapters. It was a bit of a letdown for me, as I find this awful case in history quite interesting.
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The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks is a fascinating novel about a real woman at the center of one of the most infamous kidnappings. This book did an amazing job at bringing that time and the story to life. I found this novel highly engrossing and I think readers of historical fiction would enjoy this book. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.
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This book is about the woman who would take care of the Lindbergh baby. She came to America for  new life but everything changed when the baby was kidnapped. This book covers the aftermath of the kidnapping and how it effected so many people.
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This interesting take on what life was like behind closed doors of the Lindbergh’s staff, particularly the nanny of their son who ended up being kidnapped and murdered. The story follows Betty Gow, a Scottish immigrant who unexpectedly is given the job as nanny to baby Charles. Betty quickly learns the personalities of the Lindbergh’s and how to navigate their expectations. Betty is running from her own past and is trying to make a life for herself in the US like her brother. But when unexpected things begin to happen Betty must choose between living up to expectations or to live her life how she sees fit regardless of the consequences. I enjoyed how the book touched upon societal beliefs and behaviors back then, especially pertaining to the help was fascinating.  This was a well written historical fiction book!
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The Lindbergh baby kidnapping captured the imagination of the world long before cell phones and computers.  
Betty Gow was Charlie Lindbergh’s nanny.  She cared for him for over a year while his parents traveled the world.  One night someone snatches Charlie from the bedroom of the Lindbergh’s new home in Hopewell, NJ.  Mariah Fredericks does an excellent job of describing the day to day life of the Morrow/Lindbergh family. She also makes it clear that the house staff, mainly made up of European immigrants, had their lives uprooted and destroyed by both the press and the police who were searching for someone to blame.  I enjoyed this a lot.  Fredericks has done the research that made this a very enjoyable read.  I thank NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this ARC.
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By Mariah Fredericks

I just adore reading historical fiction, and this is why. A small piece of factual history context is taken and blended into a wonderful work of fiction that makes for wonderfully propulsive and gripping read. The Lindbergh name is well known, a celebrity in his own right for making the flight across the Atlantic. Betty Gow, a Scottish immigrant is the nanny for Charles Lindbergh Jr who disappears in the middle of the night. 

I loved how thrilling this read was surrounding this mystery, and also reading the book from Betty’s perspective which touched upon the difference between the societal class – such as the life of the wealthy versus the help, expectations, and eccentricities. I found the book well written that captured my attention, as it was highly entertaining.
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I liked this book but didn’t love it in the way I had hoped. The first half dragged for me and I almost quit reading it. It just took too long to get to the actual crime and seemed to meander. Once it did get there, I enjoyed it. I liked the story being told through the Nanny’s eyes as she was the source of so much speculation during the actual events. And it was fun watching her come to her own conclusions of what actually happened on that catastrophic night. This is a case that has generated so much debate and speculation throughout the decades that it invites this type of book. In spite of the slow start, I ended up enjoying this book. Thank you to NetGalley and Minotaur Books for this arc in exchange for an honest review.
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This was honestly too long. It was interesting to read about (and listen to) the background and story surrounding Charles Lindbergh’s son, but much of it felt like it dragged on too long and had so many details that weren’t necessary or beneficial to the story. While I did think it was okay, I would give it 3.5 stars. 

Thank you to z NetGalley and the publishers for my ARC of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
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