Daughter of the Queen of Sheba by Jacki Lyden
A Memoir

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 2 Critic Reviews



As a foreign correspondent for NPR, Jacki Lyden has spent her adult life on the frontlines in some of the most dangerous war zones in the world. Her childhood was a war zone of a different kind. Her mother suffered from what we now call manic depression; when Jacki was a child in a small Wisconsin town, her mother was simply called crazy. In her delusions, she was a woman with power: Marie Antoinette or the Queen of Sheba. In her real life, she had married the nefarious local doctor, who drugged her to check her moods and terrorized the children to keep them quiet. Holding their lives together was Jacki's hardscrabble Irish grandmother, a woman who had her first child at the age of fourteen and lost her husband in a barroom brawl. Lyden vividly captures the seductive energy of her mother's delusions, which were both an inspiration and a threat as she set out on her own impassioned journey. In her twenties she joined a traveling rodeo. Later, as a radio journalist, she interviewed Arafat and maneuvered her way through Baghdad at the height of the Persian Gulf War. Always, her mother's exotic fantasies were an irresistible lure. Like Mary Karr in THE LIAR'S CLUB and Tobias Wolff in THIS BOY'S LIFE, Jacki Lyden portrays her unstable mother with a child's aching regret and an adult's keen wisdom. In DAUGHTER OF THE QUEEN OF SHEBA, three remarkable women -- mother, daughter, and grandmother -- reveal their obstinate devotion to each other against all odds, and their scrappy genius for survival.

About Jacki Lyden

See more books from this Author
Jacki Lyden is a senior correspondent for Nation Public Radio and a regular substitute host for NPR's "Weekend Edition" and "Weekend All Things Considered." An expert in the Middle East, she was a part of the award-winning NPR team that covered the Persian Gulf War. Her other journalism awards include the 1990 National Mental Heath Association Media Award for investigative reporting on mental health care. She currently lives in Washington, D.C..
Published October 1, 1997 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 288 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Business & Economics, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Daughter of the Queen of Sheba

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

In one of the tragicomic scenes related here, Lyden brings some friends home to her small Wisconsin town for a local celebration, only to find a mother who fancies herself Marie Antoinette, dressed only in ``a black bustier with garters, which dangle over a transparent lilac half-slip.'' With eac...

| Read Full Review of Daughter of the Queen of Sheb...

Entertainment Weekly

In graceful imagery as original (and occasionally as highly wrought) as her mother's costumes, Lyden — a senior correspondent for National Public Radio — loops and loops again around the central fact of her mother's manic depression and how that illness shaped Lyden's life growing up with tw...

Dec 05 1997 | Read Full Review of Daughter of the Queen of Sheb...

Reader Rating for Daughter of the Queen of Sheba

An aggregated and normalized score based on 35 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review