December 8, 2019

Author Amy Bloom Discusses Her New Book, ‘White Houses’ at CBSRZ, June 3

CHESTER — Join Books & Bagels on Sunday, June 3, and find out how author Amy Bloom unearthed the story behind First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s relationship with renowned journalist Lorena Hickok.  Her research included reading some three thousand letters between these two remarkable women, letters stowed away in the Roosevelt Library at Hyde Park and the source of inspiration for her intimate portrayal of their story.

Arguably the greatest First Lady ever, Eleanor Roosevelt contrasted in almost every possible way with Lorena Hickok, whose background was so dissimilar as to make any understanding between the two seem unlikely.  Bloom tells the story in Hickok’s inimitable voice and helps us see and understand the developing bond between these two exceptional women and thus we unravel not only their personal tale but also the momentous events of the time.

White Houses has already received critical acclaim.from numerous sources. Paula McLain, author of Circling the Sun, wrote “It seems a minor miracle, what Amy Bloom has done in White Houses. In Lorena Hickok’s unforgettable voice, she brings an untold slice of history so dazzlingly and devastatingly to life, it took my breath away. Easily, the most intimate, crackling and expansive rendering of Eleanor Roosevelt in print, and more than this, a dizzyingly beautiful tale of what it means to be human, and what it is to love. This is a book I won’t forget.”

Joyce Carol Oates describes White Houses as “Irresistibly readable, fascinating material—Amy Bloom has written a remarkably intimate and yet informative novel of the secret, scandalous love of Eleanor Roosevelt and her longtime friend and companion Lorena Hickok, who relates the tale in her own, quite wonderful voice.”

Melanie Benjamin, New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue, writes, “Amy Bloom illuminates one of the most intriguing relationships in history with her graceful prose and sensitive portrayals in White Houses.  Her Lorena Hickok is entirely sympathetic and often quite funny, yet ultimately she is a woman who found love with another lost soul, Eleanor Roosevelt.  And love is what this book is all about; it suffuses every page, every scene so that by the time you reach the end, you are simply stunned by the beauty of the world these two carved out for themselves.”

Book & Bagels will be held at Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek on Sunday, June 3, at 9:30 a.m. White Houses, along with several of Bloom’s other bookswill be on sale at the event and ready to be signed by the author.

Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is located at 55 East Kings Highway in Chester.  For more information, contact the office at CBSRZ: 860-526-8920.