Almost Famous Women by Megan Mayhew Bergman (3 out of 5)
Another book I’ve had for awhile. In fact, I’ve had a bookmark in it and been reading it on and off since December. Then retail/holiday mayhem/life came back and that was the end of that. Now, the insomnia demon has been perched on my shoulder religiously since last week, so I’ve gotten more reading done (bright spot). The women that Bergman profiles in her collection are driven by fierce impulses, independent natures, and living life by the seat of their pants. Among the stories and women here: a cross-dressing heiress seduces Marlene Dietrich, world famous actress. Oscar Wilde’s “wild” niece, Dolly (she’s a character, I have to say, she may be my favorite story here). Famous author Beryl Markham, Butterfly McQueen from “Gone With The Wild”, Allegra Byron, Lord Byron’s niece, Lucia, daughter of famed author James Joyce. It sounds bad for me to say, but I likely wouldn’t have known these women existed if not for Bergman’s writing about their very individual, vibrant personalities. No story here is the same, nor are any of the women. I liked that Bergman has such an understanding and connection to these women that she can write these so seamlessly; as if she had known these ladies personally. That’s what I came away from with this collection. And again, not a big fan of short stories or collections with different characters; but this would be on the exception list.