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The Engineer's Wife: A Novel
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Sourcebooks 2020
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Description

THE USA TODAY BESTSELLER!THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER!

She built the Brooklyn Bridge, so why don't you know her name?

Emily Roebling built a monument for all time. Then she was lost in its shadow. Discover the fascinating woman who helped design and construct the Brooklyn Bridge. Perfect for book clubs and fans of Marie Benedict.

Emily refuses to live conventionally—she knows who she is and what she wants, and she's determined to make change. But then her husband asks the unthinkable: give up her dreams to make his possible.

Emily's fight for women's suffrage is put on hold, and her life transformed when her husband Washington Roebling, the Chief Engineer of the Brooklyn Bridge, is injured on the job. Untrained for the task, but under his guidance, she assumes his role, despite stern resistance and overwhelming obstacles. But as the project takes shape under Emily's direction, she wonders whose legacy she is building—hers, or her husband's. As the monument rises, Emily's marriage, principles, and identity threaten to collapse. When the bridge finally stands finished, will she recognize the woman who built it?

Based on the true story of an American icon, The Engineer's Wife delivers an emotional portrait of a woman transformed by a project of unfathomable scale, which takes her into the bowels of the East River, suffragette riots, the halls of Manhattan's elite, and the heady, freewheeling temptations of P.T. Barnum. The biography of a husband and wife determined to build something that lasts—even at the risk of losing each other.

"Historical fiction at its finest."—Andrea Bobotis, author of The Last List of Miss Judith Kratt

Other Bestselling Historical Fiction from Sourcebooks Landmark:The Only Woman in the Room by Marie BenedictThe Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie BenedictThe Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele RichardsonSold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris

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Street Date:
04/07/2020
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781492698142
ASIN:
B0821PS859
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APA Citation (style guide)

Tracey Enerson Wood. (2020). The Engineer's Wife: A Novel. Sourcebooks.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Tracey Enerson Wood. 2020. The Engineer's Wife: A Novel. Sourcebooks.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Tracey Enerson Wood, The Engineer's Wife: A Novel. Sourcebooks, 2020.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Tracey Enerson Wood. The Engineer's Wife: A Novel. Sourcebooks, 2020. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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The Engineer's Wife
fullDescription

THE USA TODAY BESTSELLER!
THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER!

She built the Brooklyn Bridge, so why don't you know her name?

Emily Roebling built a monument for all time. Then she was lost in its shadow. Discover the fascinating woman who helped design and construct the Brooklyn Bridge. Perfect for book clubs and fans of Marie Benedict.

Emily refuses to live conventionally—she knows who she is and what she wants, and she's determined to make change. But then her husband asks the unthinkable: give up her dreams to make his possible.

Emily's fight for women's suffrage is put on hold, and her life transformed when her husband Washington Roebling, the Chief Engineer of the Brooklyn Bridge, is injured on the job. Untrained for the task, but under his guidance, she assumes his role, despite stern resistance and overwhelming obstacles. But as the project takes shape under Emily's direction, she wonders whose legacy she is building—hers, or her husband's. As the monument rises, Emily's marriage, principles, and identity threaten to collapse. When the bridge finally stands finished, will she recognize the woman who built it?

Based on the true story of an American icon, The Engineer's Wife delivers an emotional portrait of a woman transformed by a project of unfathomable scale, which takes her into the bowels of the East River, suffragette riots, the halls of Manhattan's elite, and the heady, freewheeling temptations of P.T. Barnum. The biography of a husband and wife determined to build something that lasts—even at the risk of losing each other.

"Historical fiction at its finest."—Andrea Bobotis, author of The Last List of Miss Judith Kratt

Other Bestselling Historical Fiction from Sourcebooks Landmark:
The Only Woman in the Room by Marie Benedict
The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict
The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson
Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris

reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Kim Michele Richardson, bestselling author of The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek
      • content: "Well-researched with great attention to detail, The Engineer's Wife is based on the true story about the exceptional woman who was tasked to build the Brooklyn Bridge. Though the great bridge would connect a city, it would also cause division and great loss for many. Tracey Enerson Wood delivers an absorbing and poignant tale of struggle, self-sacrifice and the family transformed by the building of the legendary American landmark during the volatile time of women's suffrage, riots and corruption. A triumphant debut not to be missed!"
      • premium: False
      • source: Karen Harper, New York Times bestselling author of The Queen's Secret
      • content: "The Engineer's Wife is just the sort of novel I love and-I hope-write. Against all odds, a dynamic, historic woman builds a monument and changes history as she and her surrounding cast leap off the page. What a life and what a beautifully written and inspiring story! "
      • premium: False
      • source: Stewart O'Nan, author of West of Sunset
      • content: "Who really built the Brooklyn Bridge? With its spunky, tough-minded heroine and vivid New York setting, The Engineer's Wife is a triumphant historical novel sure to please readers of the genre. Like Paula McLain, Tracey Enerson Wood spins a colorful and romantic tale of a storied era."
      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        February 1, 2020
        When the chief engineer falls ill, his wife steps up to direct the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge. Wood's debut novel fictionalizes the story of Emily and Washington Roebling, the real couple who took on the immense Brooklyn Bridge construction project. Emily's involvement was not intentional. For a respectable lady in 1870, it was frowned upon to leave the house without a chaperone, much less manage an all-male crew of foulmouthed laborers. However, Emily is determined to resist domestic constraints, especially since, due to complications attending the birth of son Johnny, the Roebling family will remain small. She intends to join the suffragist movement, but a series of tragedies besetting the bridge project interferes. Her father-in-law dies of tetanus following a work-site crash, necessitating that Wash take over as chief engineer. One of the main virtues here is Wood's grasp of the logistics of construction without today's heavy equipment. Underwater caissons had to be seated on the bedrock at both ends of the bridge to anchor the towers. The caisson-sinking process, involving significant pressure issues and the need to provide oxygen to men working underwater, causes many cases of "caisson disease," i.e., the bends. Wash himself is afflicted, and during his extended recovery, Emily must act as his intermediary with a fractious group of workers, investors, and corrupt politicians. Her most trusted ally, showman P.T. Barnum, helps her develop confidence and public speaking skills but also seems intent on drawing her into a dangerous flirtation. Clad in a bloomer work costume designed and executed by Wash, whose sewing prowess far exceeds her own, Emily gradually overcomes gender prejudice and wins over her bitterest opponents, although her people-pleasing is itself gender-stereotypical. The writing meticulously evokes the sights, sounds, and smells of 1870s New York--if, at times, Wood seems to embrace the Barbara Taylor Bradford school of décor-forward description. Dialogue is inconsistent, ranging from glib to stilted. Wood spares no detail in showing us what led up to that first stroll across the great bridge--by a woman.

        COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        February 17, 2020
        Spanning 1864–1884, Wood’s impeccably researched debut narrates the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge from the viewpoint of a woman central to its creation. Twenty-year-old Emily Warren meets civil engineer Washington “Wash” Roebling in 1864, when he is 27. They marry in 1865 and have their only child in Germany while Wash researches pneumatic caissons, the watertight structures used in bridge foundations. Emily reluctantly sidelines her plans of working for women’s suffrage in favor of studying her husband’s engineering books as they help raise funds for the bridge’s $7 million cost and set up house in Brooklyn. Decompression sickness from trips in and out of the caisson keeps Wash housebound for years, so Emily goes from being his “eyes and ears” at the site to handling public relations and technical problem solving, and taking a leadership role during the project’s many crises. Wash provides little emotional support or companionship, and Emily develops an attraction to charismatic showman P.T. Barnum while still hoping for a sign of affection from her husband. Readers will appreciate the nuanced depiction of Emily’s struggles to overcome male resistance and balance her own needs with her partner’s. Wood’s satisfying historical feels true to its era yet powerfully relevant to women’s lives today.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        February 15, 2020
        Wood (Homefront Cooking, 2018) bases her first novel on the real life of Emily Warren Roebling, the woman responsible for completing the Brooklyn Bridge. Readers meet young Emily in 1864, an independent spirit not defined by the traditional and limited roles for women. While finishing her education and beginning her work in the suffrage movement, Emily meets Captain Washington Roebling, an aide to her brother during the Civil War. They soon fall in love and Emily decides to put aside her own passions to support Wash and his father's dream to engineer bridges that will change the country. Emily follows them from city to city, educating herself and raising her son alongside the dangerous construction sites and unfamiliar streets. After her father-in-law dies from an accident and Wash becomes ill, Emily must carry on in Wash's place, persevering in the face of adversity to finish the Brooklyn Bridge. This important work of historical fiction brings to life the strength and resolve of a nineteenth-century woman overshadowed by men and overlooked by history books.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

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AN INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

She built the Brooklyn Bridge, so why don't you know her name?

Emily Roebling built a monument for all time. Then she was lost in its shadow. Discover the fascinating woman who helped design and construct the Brooklyn Bridge. Perfect for book clubs and fans of Marie Benedict.

Emily refuses to live conventionally—she knows who she is and what she wants, and she's determined to make change. But then her husband asks the unthinkable: give up her dreams to make his possible.

Emily's fight for women's suffrage is put on hold, and her life transformed when her husband Washington Roebling, the Chief Engineer of the Brooklyn Bridge, is injured on the job. Untrained for the task, but under his guidance, she assumes his role, despite stern resistance and overwhelming obstacles. But as the project takes shape under Emily's direction, she wonders whose legacy she is building—hers, or her husband's. As the...

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