New York Times best-selling author Anne Sebba’s moving biography of Ethel Rosenberg, the wife and mother whose execution for espionage-related crimes defined the Cold War and horrified the world.
In June 1953, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, a couple with two young sons, were led separately from their prison cells on Death Row and electrocuted moments apart. Both had been convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage for the Soviet Union, despite the fact that the US government was aware that the evidence against Ethel was shaky at best and based on the perjury of her own brother.
This book is the first to focus on one half of that couple for more than 30 years, and much new evidence has surfaced since then. Ethel was a bright girl who might have fulfilled her personal dream of becoming an opera singer, but instead found herself struggling with the social mores of the 1950s. She longed to be a good wife and perfect mother, while battling the political paranoia of the McCarthy era, anti-Semitism, misogyny, and a mother who never valued her. Because of her profound love for and loyalty to her husband, she refused to incriminate him, despite government pressure on her to do so. Instead, she courageously faced the death penalty for a crime she hadn’t committed, orphaning her children.
Seventy years after her trial, this is the first time Ethel’s story has been told with the full use of the dramatic and tragic prison letters she exchanged with her husband, her lawyer, and her psychotherapist over a three-year period, two of them in solitary confinement. Hers is the resonant story of what happens when a government motivated by fear tramples on the rights of its citizens.
In the 1950s Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted to death for espionage. Ethel’s conviction was achieved via shaky evidence and the perjury by her own brother. This is a biography delving into many aspects of the case and the tragedy surrounding Ethel’s family.
Wow! There is so much in this book which I had no idea about! The author definitely did her research. I liked how the author pointed out some mistakes by the attorneys and she brought to life the tragedy surrounding this case.
I want to say many things about this biography. I knew so little about this time period and this case. I felt so bad for Ethel and her children. Such a tragedy and we should never forget how it came about!
The narrator, Orlagh Cassidy is fantastic. She is very straightforward and has a great cadence.
Need a good biography…do not miss this one! Grab your copy today!