The Astor Orphan

The Astor Orphan

2.74 (825 ratings by Goodreads)
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The Astor Orphan is an unflinching debut memoir by a direct descendant of John Jacob Astor, Alexandra Aldrich.

She brilliantly tells the story of her eccentric, fractured family; her 1980s childhood of bohemian neglect in the squalid attic of Rokeby, the family's Hudson Valley Mansion; and her brave escape from the clan. Aldrich reaches back to the Gilded Age when the Astor legacy began to come undone, leaving the Aldrich branch of the family penniless and squabbling over what was left.

Illustrated with black-and-white photographs that bring this faded world into focus, The Astor Orphan is written with the grit of The Glass Castle and set amid the aristocratic decay of Grey Gardens.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 259 pages
  • 132.08 x 203.2 x 22.86mm | 272.15g
  • Ecco Press
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • black & white halftones
  • 0062207954
  • 9780062207951
  • 2,096,035

Review quote

"Novelistic. . . . Vividly gothic. . . . It's a trick to tell a story this rich and complicated through the eyes of a child without losing the subtleties of character and nuances of history, but Aldrich pulls it off with aplomb."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
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Back cover copy

Heir to the Astor legacy, Alexandra Aldrich tells the astonishing story of her eccentric, fractured family and her decision to flee its storied legacy
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Rating details

825 ratings
2.74 out of 5 stars
5 5% (45)
4 15% (123)
3 36% (300)
2 35% (287)
1 8% (70)
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