Book Review: “An American Beauty,” a Gilded Age Novel Inspired by the Life of Arabella Huntington, the Wealthiest Woman in America

If you’re looking for a dazzling read that will transport you to the opulent world of Gilded Age New York, then “An American Beauty” is just the book for you. This stunning biographical historical novel by the New York Times bestselling author of “The Second Mrs. Astor” tells the true rags-to-riches story of Arabella Huntington, the wealthiest self-made woman in America.

Arabella’s story begins in Richmond, Virginia, where she works at Worsham’s gambling parlor. Despite wearing the same low-cut purple gown as all of the other girls, Arabella stands apart with her unyielding grit and resolve to escape poverty. Enter Collis Huntington, a self-made multimillionaire and railroad baron who is drawn to Arabella from their first meeting. Despite their age difference and Collis being married, their flirtation soon turns into an affair.

With Collis’s help, Arabella eventually moves to New York, posing as a genteel, well-to-do Southern widow. Using Collis’s seed money and her own shrewd investing instincts, she begins to amass a fortune. However, entering the elite circle of “The Four Hundred” is not easy. Arabella must earn her place in Society not just through her wealth, but also with impeccable behavior, style, and taste. But along the way, she faces unexpected challenges to her ambition, loyalties, and heart.

What I loved about this book is how author creates a vivid and captivating world. It’s easy to get lost in the glamour and drama of Gilded Age New York, and Arabella’s story is the perfect vehicle to do so. She’s a fascinating character whose exceptional business acumen and artistic eye are matched only by her great beauty. But what really sets this book apart is the way author captures Arabella’s spirit and resilience. Despite the challenges she faces, she never gives up on her dreams.

Another great thing about “An American Beauty” is the way it highlights the constraints of the era Arabella lived in. Women were not supposed to be independent or ambitious, let alone self-made millionaires. Yet Arabella defied all expectations and norms to become one of the most successful businesswomen of her time. Her story is an inspiration and a reminder that anything is possible if you believe in yourself.

In terms of writing style, “An American Beauty” is a joy to read. The narrative flows smoothly and the characters are well-developed. There’s also plenty of high society gossip, scandal, and romance to keep you entertained. Whether you’re a fan of historical fiction or just looking for a fun read, this book is sure to impress.

Overall, “An American Beauty” is an impressive work of biographical historical fiction that will transport you to a glittering world of beauty, wealth, and ambition. Arabella Huntington is a remarkable woman, and her story is one that will inspire and entertain readers for years to come. If you’re looking for a book that will sweep you away to another time and place, look no further than “An American Beauty.”
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(as of Mar 25, 2023 17:04:20 UTC – Details)

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