The Beautiful American

Front Cover
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated, 2014 - Fiction - 352 pages
30 Reviews
From Paris in the 1920s to London after the Blitz, two women find that a secret from their past reverberates through years of joy and sorrow....

As recovery from World War II begins, expat American Nora Tours travels from her home in southern France to London in search of her missing sixteen-year-old daughter. There, she unexpectedly meets up with an old acquaintance, famous model-turned-photographer Lee Miller. Neither has emerged from the war unscathed. Nora is racked with the fear that her efforts to survive under the Vichy regime may have cost her daughter’s life. Lee suffers from what she witnessed as a war correspondent photographing the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps.

Nora and Lee knew each other in the heady days of late 1920s Paris, when Nora was giddy with love for her childhood sweetheart, Lee became the celebrated mistress of the artist Man Ray, and Lee’s magnetic beauty drew them all into the glamorous lives of famous artists and their wealthy patrons. But Lee fails to realize that her friendship with Nora is even older, that it goes back to their days as children in Poughkeepsie, New York, when a devastating trauma marked Lee forever. Will Nora’s reunion with Lee give them a chance to forgive past betrayals…and break years of silence to forge a meaningful connection as women who have shared the best and the worst that life can offer?

A novel of freedom and frailty, desire and daring, The Beautiful American portrays the extraordinary relationship between two passionate, unconventional women.

Readers Guide Included

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
11
4 stars
14
3 stars
5
2 stars
0
1 star
0

Review: The Beautiful American

User Review  - Jennifer DuBose - Goodreads

The Beautiful American is a novel of historical fiction divided between 1920s expat Paris and wartime France/England. The story focuses on the life of the famous Lee Miller, but is told through the ... Read full review

Review: The Beautiful American

User Review  - Shayna - Goodreads

Really enjoyed it. The characters are interesting - Nora's voice and narration invited me into a new and different psyche than my own, and Lee is certainly interesting. The notes about perfumes made ... Read full review

About the author (2014)

Jeanne Mackin teaches creative writing at Goddard College in Vermont and has taught or conducted workshops in Pennsylvania, Hawaii and New York.  She lives with her husband, artist Steve Poleskie, in upstate New York. She is also the author of several novels:  The Sweet By and By, Dreams of Empire, The Queen’s War, and The Frenchwoman.

Bibliographic information