The Astronaut Wives Club
By Lily Koppel
The true story of the wives behind the American Space Race, the challenges they faced in the '50s and '60s, and the 40 year friendship that bound them together.
As American astronauts were launched on death-defying missions, television cameras focused on the brave smiles of their wives. Overnight, these women were transformed from shy military spouses to American royalty: having tea with Jackie Kennedy, attending high society galas, and being featured on the cover of Life magazine. They quickly grew into fashion icons, donning sherbet-swirled Pucci dresses and lacquering their hair into extravagant rocket styles (to match their husbands' spaceships).
Annie Glenn was the envy of the other wives, with her many magazine features; platinum-blonde bombshell Rene Carpenter was proclaimed JFK's favourite; homely Betty Grissom worried her husband was having affairs; Louise Shepard just wanted to be left alone to her card games; and licensed pilot Trudy Cooper arrived on base with a dirty secret. Together they rallied to form the Astronaut Wives Club, which has now turned into over 40 years of enduring friendship.
Sexy and sophisticated, rich in melodrama, and set against the uniquely atmospheric backdrop of the Space Age, THE ASTRONAUTS' WIVES CLUB tells the real story behind some of the biggest heroes in American history, chronicling their romantic, domestic, and public dramas during the Mad Men era.
Lily Koppel is the bestselling author of The Red Leather Diary: Reclaiming a Life Through the Pages of a Lost Journal. She writes for the New York Times, and her work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the New York Times Book Review, the Huffington Post, and Glamour.
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- Publication date:
06 Jun 2013
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This is a fun, unusual read — Camilla Long, The Sunday Times
THE ASTRONAUT WIVES CLUB tells the real story of the women who stood beside some of the biggest heroes in American history. — Good Reads
Much of the tale is touching and funny... It's a wonderful book. If you're interested in the US space programme you'll love it. If you're not it might be the book that gets you interested. — The Spectator Blog
Absorbing — Hello
Terrific...both authoritative and nicely gossipy and the same time. — Readers Digest