Laura Hillenbrand’s first book, Seabiscuit, was about the eponymous racehorse whose triumphs lightened the dark days of the Great Depression. Based on meticulous research, the book broadened out into a harrowing – yet heartening – social history of America in the 1930s.
It has taken some time for Hillenbrand to produce her follow-up. This is partly at least because she suffers from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, which makes simply getting out of bed, let alone the mammoth task of researching and writing a book, an enormous effort. All the more praise