Picks and Pans Review: Enemy Women
Adair Colley is 18 when marauding Union soldiers burn her Missouri house and arrest her father during the Civil War. Adair flees with her sisters but is later caught, falsely charged with aiding the Confederacy and taken to a women's prison in St. Louis, where she falls in love with her Union interrogator.
Jiles paints the struggles of the era with the same intensity as Charles Frazier's 1997 bestseller Cold Mountain, but she slows her otherwise tight narrative by preceding each chapter with excerpts from real historical letters meant to provide context. Enemy Women succeeds because of the vitality of its heroine: Adair is a spitfire with a brash sense of humor and a will of granite. Hers is a love story with grit. (Morrow, $24.95)
Bottom Line: POW-erful tale
Rita Hayworth: A Photographic Retrospective
by Caren Roberts-Frenzel
In World War II no serviceman was fully equipped without a pinup of Rita Hayworth. A LIFE photo of her at home in a lacy nightgown is still one of the most reproduced celebrity images in the magazine's history.
Both the public and private sides of Hayworth, the child of a Ziegfeld girl and a Spanish dancer, are shown in this trove of nearly 300 images, including shots of young Margarita Carmen Cansino (her given name) and of her last appearances before her death from Alzheimer's in 1987 at age 68. Most fun are the candid moments and captions: Frank Sinatra, learning that he would be working with Kim Novak and Hayworth in Pal Joey, said, "I don't mind being in the middle of that sandwich."
Divorced five times, she nevertheless seemed to have a fabulous time along the way (among her husbands were Orson Welles, with whom she had Rebecca Welles, and Prince Aly Khan, with whom she had Princess Yasmin Aga Khan). "When you're in love," she once said, "you're living." (Abrams, $39.95)
Bottom Line: Lovely Rita makes for compelling viewing