The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks
Rosepoint Publishing: Five Stars
When the most famous toddler in America, Charles Lindbergh, Jr., is kidnapped from his family home in New Jersey in 1932, the case makes international headlines. Already celebrated for his flight across the Atlantic, his father, Charles, Sr., is the country’s golden boy, with his wealthy, lovely wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, by his side. But there’s someone else in their household—Betty Gow, a formerly obscure young woman, now known around the world by another name: the Lindbergh Nanny.
A Scottish immigrant deciphering the rules of her new homeland and its East Coast elite, Betty finds Colonel Lindbergh eccentric and often odd, Mrs. Lindbergh kind yet nervous, and Charlie simply a darling. Far from home and bruised from a love affair gone horribly wrong, Betty finds comfort in caring for the child, and warms to the attentions of handsome sailor Henrik, sometimes known as Red. Then, Charlie disappears.
Suddenly a suspect in the eyes of both the media and the public, Betty must find the truth about what really happened that night, in order to clear her own name—and to find justice for the child she loves.
The kidnapping of the century happened in 1932. Charles Lindbergh’s son is missing and one of the primary suspects is his nanny, Betty Gow. She is an attractive young lady from Scotland who has come to the United States to make her fame and fortune. She is very well vetted by the Lindberghs prior to being hired to take care of their young son Charlie.
Charlie is very taken with his new nursemaid and sees her as his mother figure. His mother, Anne Morrow Lindberg, is busy making trips all over the globe with the first man to cross the Atlantic on a solo flight. Anne is a very attractive woman and achieves her pilot’s license during the time Betty was the nanny. Colonel Lindberg has set strict rules that the baby is to be put in his room from 8 until 10 at night and is not to be coddled! The baby is spirited from his room during those hours by a ladder set on the second floor of the family home.
During the deepest hours of the Great Depression many people are out of work. The ransom set at $70,000 is a very large amount during the time. The U.S. has just been taken off of the gold standard and the bills are all U.S. gold certificates with the serial numbers carefully recorded and the banks in the area alerted to anyone who uses the bills.
Betty is suspected of the crime and under continual suspicion. She has to return to Scotland because of the notoriety in the case but later returns. Some of his nightwear is found in the woods near the home and days later the body of baby Charles Lindbergh is also found fairly close to the home. Betty is totally devastated by the boy’s death and stays on through the investigation and trial.
This book is very well written and has some literary license taken to help support the final court decision in the case and the end story. The characters are very well developed and the narrative heartbreaking in its exposé. I found myself very sympathetic with Ms. Gow and the Lindbergh family. 5 stars – CE Williams
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with the opportunity to read and review this book.
Genre: Historical Biographical Fiction, Biographical Fiction, Historical Scottish Fiction
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Publication Date: November 15, 2022
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Link: The Lindbergh Nanny [Amazon]
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The Author: Mariah Fredericks was born and raised in New York City. She graduated from Vassar College with a degree in history. She enjoys reading and writing about dead people and how they got that way. She is the author of the Jane Prescott mystery series.
©2022 CE Williams – V Williams