The First Ladies

The First Ladies

Authors: ,
ISBN: 9780593440285
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About the Book

A novel about the extraordinary partnership between First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and civil rights activist Mary McLeod Bethune—an unlikely friendship that changed the world, from the New York Times bestselling authors of the Good Morning America Book Club pick The Personal Librarian.

The daughter of formerly enslaved parents, Mary McLeod Bethune refuses to back down as white supremacists attempt to thwart her work. She marches on as an activist and an educator, and as her reputation grows she becomes a celebrity, revered by titans of business and recognized by U.S. Presidents. Eleanor Roosevelt herself is awestruck and eager to make her acquaintance. Initially drawn together because of their shared belief in women’s rights and the power of education, Mary and Eleanor become fast friends confiding their secrets, hopes and dreams—and holding each other’s hands through tragedy and triumph.

When Franklin Delano Roosevelt is elected president, the two women begin to collaborate more closely, particularly as Eleanor moves toward her own agenda separate from FDR, a consequence of the devastating discovery of her husband’s secret love affair. Eleanor becomes a controversial First Lady for her outspokenness, particularly on civil rights. And when she receives threats because of her strong ties to Mary, it only fuels the women’s desire to fight together for justice and equality.

This is the story of two different, yet equally formidable, passionate, and committed women, and the way in which their singular friendship helped form the foundation for the modern civil rights movement.

“This book will expand your perspective and keep you reading late into the night."
– Dolen Perkins-Valdez, New York Times bestselling author of Take My Hand
“It's an utter joy to watch civil rights activist Mary McLeod Bethune and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt forge a partnership that changed America: plotting over teacups, negotiating tricky conversations about race and privilege, celebrating their triumphs, and never giving up. The First Ladies is a wonder!"
– Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Diamond Eye
“This timely story encapsulates the unmovable power of when two strong minds come together in the name of justice and equality. "
– Sadeqa Johnson, New York Times bestselling author of The House of Eve
“A powerful and unforgettable story of female strength and the triumph of the human spirit.”
– Pam Jenoff, New York Times bestselling author of Code Name Sapphire
“I’ve never read a more inspiring story about women raising up other women and working together to try to change the world. A tour de force.”
– Natasha Lester, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Orphan
"Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray herald the beauty and passion of a celebrated friendship across color lines and the complications of history.”
– Vanessa Riley, award-winning author of Queen of Exiles
“This rich, compelling portrait of a friendship between two quiet revolutionaries overturns our ideas about class, race, and gender in the twentieth century… a magnificently moving story, both intimate and monumental, that ultimately delivers a message of reconciliation and hope.”
– Beatriz Williams, New York Times bestselling author of The Beach at Summerly
“A compelling and captivating story… I was moved by not only what they were able to accomplish together, but the resilience displayed by both women. But more than anything, it was their friendship that kept me captivated until the very last page. I can’t remember the last time I was so inspired by a novel!”
– ReShonda Tate Billingsley, author of Miss Pearly’s Girls
Look Inside
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