American Wife: Curtis Sittenfeld: I would not normally have picked up this book because I wasn't particularly interested in a novel based on the life of Laura Bush, but Samantha liked it, and we have similar taste in books. This book is not fast paced, so if you're looking for a quick read, American Wife is not for you. But if the life of a quiet woman who finds herself profoundly affected by a tragic accident in her teens and then is caught up in the swirling life of a big political family in her 30s, is of interest to you, then this is your book. Sometimes I found myself very frustrated by Alice -- it's as if, after the accident, she was a passive participant in her own life. She had excuses for everything, including the mistakes of her husband the president, rather than deal with any incident upfront. But, nevertheless, I liked her. I especially liked her the few times she showed some backbone and stood up to Charlie. American Wife is well-written and enjoyable; my only quibble is with the end, after Charlie is in the White House. The book seems to lose Alice's story here and just ends -- it's as if Sittenfeld didn't know how to end the novel. Despite the lackluster ending, American Wife is a good read and I would consider reading it again at some point.