“The Only Woman in the Room” by Marie Benedict

It seems that this is the year of the biography for me. I’m not sure why, but here we are with my third one this year. This one is a bit different from the last two, however, as it’s not your typical bio book. The Only Woman in the Room is actually more of a fictionalized account of Hedy Lamarr written by Marie Benedict. I have to say, it very much read like a historical fiction, but made even more amazing by its inspiration from real life events.

The story starts when Hedy is still Hedwig Kiesler. She’s headlining her first (and last) stage performance in her hometown Vienna, Austria when a powerful man by the name of Friedrich Mandl takes an interest in her. A whirlwind courtship and wedding lands her into an unexpected gilded cage marred by domestic abuse. The big secret? This is how she begins her journey to develop the concepts of frequency hopping and her journey to Hollywood.

Like many stars of the time, she lead a tumultuous life behind the silver screen, but it never stopped her from trying to lend a hand to the war effort. Although the US government ignored her technology for years (idiots), they eventually re-discovered her patents and put them to use. It’s a shame that it took so long for her to be recognized for her genius. She will always remain an inspiration to me and I plan to tell her story to anyone who will listen. Especially you!

This is an excellent summer read, and I hope that you will take time to check it out. What’s on your summer reading list this year? I’d love to know, so share your recent faves in the comments below!

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