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The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb: A Novel…
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The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb: A Novel (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Melanie Benjamin

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5529518,107 (3.91)45
Member:julko
Title:The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb: A Novel
Authors:Melanie Benjamin
Info:Bantam (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 480 pages
Collections:Your library, 2012 (inactive)
Rating:****
Tags:2012/11, fiction, historical fiction, little people, circus, book club, sent to mom

Work details

The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin (2011)

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» See also 45 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 96 (next | show all)
One of my favorite books of the year; Benjamin utterly charmed me with this one. She has utterly captured another time and place and Vinnie is a character I will not soon forget. ( )
  mamashepp | Mar 29, 2016 |
One of my favorite books of the year; Benjamin utterly charmed me with this one. She has utterly captured another time and place and Vinnie is a character I will not soon forget. ( )
  mamashepp | Mar 29, 2016 |
I listened to this book on audio CD. What an amazing tale. I absolutely fell in love with Vinnie. She was so strong and determined. The characters were rich and entertaining. Highly recommend. ( )
  lacey.tucker | Mar 10, 2016 |
A bit slow moving at times but overall a good story. Takes place in the late 1800 and early 1900's when railroad travel traveling circuses were emerging. It tells the life story of a "miniature" woman who worked for PT Barnum. There was a little bit of everything such as history, love story, family drama, etc. ( )
  micahmom2002 | Jan 25, 2016 |
A bit slow moving at times but overall a good story. Takes place in the late 1800 and early 1900's when railroad travel traveling circuses were emerging. It tells the life story of a "miniature" woman who worked for PT Barnum. There was a little bit of everything such as history, love story, family drama, etc. ( )
  micahmom2002 | Jan 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 96 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Melanie Benjaminprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Guest, Kim MaiNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Dennis, without whom
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I suppose it would be fashionable to admit to some reservations as I undertake to write the History of My Life.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
In her national bestseller Alice I Have Been, Melanie Benjamin imagined the life of the woman who inspired Alice in Wonderland. Now, in this jubilant new novel, Benjamin shines a dazzling spotlight on another fascinating female figure whose story has never fully been told: a woman who became a nineteenth century icon and inspiration—and whose most daunting limitation became her greatest strength.

“Never would I allow my size to define me. Instead, I would define it.”

She was only two-foot eight-inches tall, but her legend reaches out to us more than a century later. As a child, Mercy Lavinia “Vinnie” Bump was encouraged to live a life hidden away from the public. Instead, she reached out to the immortal impresario P. T. Barnum, married the tiny superstar General Tom Thumb in the wedding of the century, and transformed into the world’s most unexpected celebrity.

Here, in Vinnie’s singular and spirited voice, is her amazing adventure—from a showboat “freak” revue where she endured jeering mobs to her fateful meeting with the two men who would change her life: P. T. Barnum and Charles Stratton, AKA Tom Thumb. Their wedding would captivate the nation, preempt coverage of the Civil War, and usher them into the White House and the company of presidents and queens. But Vinnie’s fame would also endanger the person she prized most: her similarly-sized sister, Minnie, a gentle soul unable to escape the glare of Vinnie’s spotlight.

A barnstorming novel of the Gilded Age, and of a woman’s public triumphs and personal tragedies, The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb is the irresistible epic of a heroine who conquered the country with a heart as big as her dreams—and whose story will surely win over yours.
Haiku summary
Was she too little?
Was the world itself too small / 
to contain her dreams? (LynnB)

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(see all 2 descriptions)

Mid-nineteenth-century little person Mercy Levinia Warren Bump comes of age in the antebellum south before being invited to join the P. T. Barnum circus, through which she meets her future husband, General Tom Thumb, and pursues limitless international opportunities.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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