Call Me Zelda

Call Me Zelda

by Erika Robuck
4.5 23


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Call Me Zelda 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
hghtashbry More than 1 year ago
**I received an ARC of this book from a giveaway** I gave this book 4 stars simply because I enjoyed it; I liked the characters and the writing style. However, there are a lot of aspects that didn't quite work for me. I did feel that there were times where the author tried a bit too hard to show the time period in which the book was set because the writing itself didn't show it (ex: the forced need to mention that prohibition had ended. It had nothing to do with the book or the characters). Although it was only a sentence or two, it still throws you off as a reader and forces you to ask "why?". The book was actually focused on the nurse and not Zelda, as the title and back cover would lead you to believe. For being something that was "thoroughly researched" there wasn't much depth into the life of Zelda or her husband. Zelda's life was actually the back story and the nurse's life was the main story. The book was interesting and it was an enjoyable read but it was not at all what was expected from the title or the summary.
anovelreview_blogspot_com More than 1 year ago
The arrival of the famous Zelda Fitzgerald to a Baltimore Psychiatric hospital forever changes the life of her nurse, Anna Howard. Anna has a past all boxed up in her bedroom closet where she'd like to keep it. Her work and weekend trips to her parents are her life, until Zelda walks in.  Zelda is sometimes perfectly normal, but things turn so quickly.She seems to be trying to separate her identity from her famous husband, F. Scott Fitzgerald --she is literally trying to write her own story. The longer Zelda is in the hospital the more drawn to the Fitzgerald's Anna becomes. Her friendship with Zelda begins to change who Anna is in ways Anna never expected! I honestly knew little to nothing about Zelda Fitzgerald before reading CALL ME ZELDA. I really enjoyed Robuck's use of a fictitious nurse to tell a behind the scenes fictional account based around what we can learn about the couple. I, myself was fascinated with the Fitzgerarld's turbulent relationship, they ran hot, they ran cold--their's was a crazy love story. I was always left wondering what the real story between them was.  I was immediately drawn to Anna or her story, but the more drawn into their life she became...the more she seemed to come alive. It was like their overabundance of energy and life fueled her. Her friendship with Zelda opened Anna up. Just as soon as I found myself enjoying Anna's story, I wanted to pull her back before---and wow what an ending!  As soon as I put the book down, I jumped on to google to look up pictures of Zelda and to learn more about her. I wanted more Zelda! I was captivated by the store and with Robuck's beautiful writing. I am highly recommending CALL ME ZELDA!
BarbaraClaypoleWhite More than 1 year ago
I know very little about this period of history or the Fitzgeralds' turbulent marriage, and it didn't matter. This is a mesmerizing story of love, madness, and loss. While I enjoyed the glimpses into Zelda's dysfuntional relationship with her husband and her broken psyche, it was Anna's story that kept me up late at night. Anna is a wonderful heroine, and I rooted for her from page one. There's a gentle strength to her voice that is utterly appealing. Her brother is equally fascinating and outshone Scott for me. I loved that these two 'ordinary' people where drawing my interest more than the tragic, famous lovers. Gloriously unexpected!
vvb32 More than 1 year ago
This book houses two storylines that are equally interesting to read.  One story is composed of glimpses of Zelda and her well-being and not-so-well being with and without her husband, Scott. This story follows Zelda at the start of her mental illness problems. The second storyline follows the life of Zelda's nurse, Anna and the positive effect Zelda has on her personal life. 
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
In February, 1932, Phipps Psychiatric Johns Hopkins University Hospital was about to receive a very famous patient. As F. Scott Fitzgerald stays behind in the administrative offices to complete the last of the paperwork necessary to commit his wife Zelda, Nurse Anna Howard gingerly guides Zelda to her room. It was more than a room, it would be Zelda’s home for however long it would take to try and piece the broken parts of Zelda back together again. Gone was the glorious spark in her eyes and exuberant effervescence from her soul. The infamous flapper girl of the 20’s was buried somewhere in the depths between calm and rage as much as she was in battle with the voices in her head. How had this woman become so broken—the woman who managed to usurp the heart and every other facet of the elusive and great F.Scott Fitzgerald? Nurse Anna Howard has been assigned to the day-to-day care of Zelda. The question arises early on: Is the healing process solely for Zelda or perhaps it is for both women. It seems Anna’s once perfect life was ripped away too soon when her husband Ben went missing in action, never to return from the war. Caretaking is not foreign to Anna given it was her credentials of a wartime nurse at Walter Reed Hospital that landed her the permanent position of psychiatric caretaker at Phipps. In a kindred sort of way, the brokenness of Zelda and the heartache of Anna collide and the divinity of healing however great or small begins. In time, Zelda allows the veil of her catatonic disconnection to drop as she allows Anna in. The essence of Zelda’s break is her escalating paranoia and belief that her beloved ‘Goofo’ (Scott) has stolen her stories and made them his own. She convinces Anna that Scott stole her precious diaries early on in their union—diaries that portrayed the philandering, outrageous parties and reckless abandon they willingly embraced during post war depression and prohibition. Perhaps the location of the ephemeral diaries is the key to not only free Zelda from the crazies, but allow Anna to live her life to the full extent it was destined to do so. And just exactly what role did the great F. Scott Fitzgerald play through it all? Ms. Robuck not only possesses a beautifully romantic style, but her true passion toward her subject matter rises from the pages as well. She draws the curtain back and reveals the life and times of Zelda Fitzgerald. There is melancholia as much as shock and she tempers the tone with superb storytelling ability. Her prolific and poetic way of describing a scene goes far beyond: It was cold. Rather, passages such as "...Though it was the end of February, the day was a lazy sort of cold. The sun slipped through the clouds in bursts, reminding the landscape that it was still there..." are plentiful throughout this read. As admirable as her ability is toward storytelling, Ms. Robuck deserves recognition for her astute research of her subject matter before tackling the writing of the greatness of both Fitzgeralds. However, she never confuses the storyline or falters from her devotion of reserving center stage for Zelda, an intriguing woman of substance. Ms. Robuck has delivered a bittersweet read and leaves the reader with a strong sense of being in the very moment in time from the story’s beginning to its surprising end. Keep writing Ms. Robuck. There are far too many greats whose stories beckon your pen to write.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
sneps More than 1 year ago
Excellent Book about Zelda Fitzgerald and How Mental Illness Impacts a Family! I loved reading Erika Robuck’s book. She leaves no stone unturned, and explores her mental illness and the way Zelda navigates through it, while being a wife and mother. Told through the viewpoint of Zelda’s nurse, Ann, readers get an intimate glimpse into the struggles Zelda faces and how she tries to make sense of it all. While in the hospital, Zelda writes a memoir that she lets Ann be privy to. In those journals, Zelda shares the highlights and downfalls of her relationship with Scott, her life before and during her marriage, and how explosive it all was. Ann also gives readers a glimpse into the relationship between Zelda and her daughter, Scotty, and how Zelda’s erratic behavior impacted her relationship as mom and wife. Scott needs his muse, Zelda, and to the demise of Zelda, often brings her home. However, Ann is never far away and is the calming, strong force that helps them both through that tough period. As a family therapist, I was absolutely intrigued to read about the way mental health was addressed, the therapies given in the psychiatric hospital, and they way Zelda flourished/caved in, different points of her treatment. This is a book that will stay with readers for a long time, and is as heartbreaking and courageous as Zelda, herself. I loved the balance between Ann’s story and Zelda’s and the look inside a psychiatric hospital, while also giving readers much to appreciate and adore in the person Zelda was. This is an excellent read and anyone who loves anything to do with “The Jazz Age”, F. Scott Fitzgerald, curious about mental illness and the impact it has on families, and Zelda Fitzgerald, will easily want to add this book to their bookshelf.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
4/5 stars, love this author and this was an absorbing book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ShannonLindsey More than 1 year ago
This fictional account of Zelda--and Scott--Fitzgerald is well-written. As a lover of all things Fitzgerald, I was impressed by Robuck's ability to display the emotion of this tumultuous marriage. The fictional narrator, Anna, is a wonderful voice and functions as a device that allows Robuck to tell the story from a more personal perspective. Clearly, Robuck did her research. There are several mentions of various mysteries and speculation that have surrounded the Fitzgeralds as long as they have been famous. Ms. Robuck does an excellent job of bringing attention to important details of their lives that are often overlooked or sugarcoated.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
CALL ME ZELDA by Erika Robuck is an interesting Historical Fiction set during the Jazz Age,1932 Maryland and places far beyond. The story is told through the eyes and heart of a kind,compassionate, Psychiatric nurse, Anna Howard. If you think you know all there is to know about the turmoil that was the life of the Fitzgeralds' than think again. A very poignant tale of the life of Zelda Fitzgerald,the tragedy,the grief,the parties,the tumultuous relationship between herself and her husband, F. Scott Fitzgerald and her psychiatric problems. Zelda writes a secret memoir,which she meant for herself only,with her most true and inner confessions. While, Zelda has a dark side she is also vibrant,and charming. Friendship,healing and a compelling story from beginning to the last page. While, the Fitzgeralds' where devoted to each other they had a dangerous, tumultuous relationship. But who was the true genius in their relationship? Pick up "Call Me Zelda" to find answers to many of the questions asked concerning this famous couple. Written with vivid descriptions. The characters are interesting to say the least. The storyline is very engaging. I have listened to the audio of this couple's relationship and found "Call Me Zelda" captivating to say the least. A must read for anyone who enjoys historical fiction, as well as a great read! Received for an honest review from the publisher. RATING: 4 HEAT RATING: Mild REVIEWED BY: AprilR Review courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
SecondCityGal More than 1 year ago
Fans of F. Scott Fitzgerald must put CALL ME ZELDA at the top of their TBR pile. Just as in HEMINGWAY'S GIRL, Erkia Robuck once again introduces a fictional character to deftly illuminate the lives of these literary icons. Her prose is beautiful and the story gripping, especially the ending. In this time of renewed interest in The Great Gatsby and Zelda, there couldn't be a better time to read this one! Enjoy!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
literarymuseVC More than 1 year ago
Who is helping Zelda and who is using her?  That’s the quandary in this poignant, complex story about the famous wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda.  The plot is not what’s complex; it’s the unbalanced characters whom one can never predict to act in a certain way at any moment in time. The story begins with Zelda being admitted to a hospital for psychiatric treatment of her acute depression, although she certainly comes across as one suffering from manic depression or bipolar disease.  She moves from excessive crying to rage to an almost catatonic state to normalcy in the matter of ten minutes.  What is more amazing is the healing presence of Anna, the nurse assigned to Zelda’s case.  Anna seems to have a super-sensitive wisdom about what Zelda needs.  Unfortunately, there are some quick stereotypical conclusions that hold true throughout the entire novel; Scotty, Zelda’s husband, is the “bad” guy who cannot write without Zelda’s presence and yet who drives him increasingly to drinking more and more and more.  Zelda accuses him of sucking the air out of her life and it certainly seems that way from the point of view of Anna who closely observes and interprets the couple’s interactions. Anna has her own issues surrounding the loss of her husband and daughter, although that doesn’t really clarify until the end of the story.  Her family is against her taking care of Zelda constantly and even more so when Scott hires her as a personal nurse when she eventually leaves the hospital. Anna’s greatest gift to Zelda is the writing down of her thoughts about past years in story form which indeed does seem to help in her healing process.  Yet the expression of those thoughts and feelings, beautiful as they are to the reader, actually seem to be causing a regression in Zelda’s unstable condition.  The Fitzgeralds have a daughter who matters little other than to serve as the reason Zelda is hanging on, although she actually spends almost no time at all with her child, fearful of harming her daughter with her own illness. Call Me Zelda: A Novel is an interesting story, rather overstretched with repetition, but fascinating at the mental and emotional world of this rich, spoiled, self-driven, jealous, paranoid, and sometimes tender couple.  Zelda is eliciting much public attention with the upcoming Great Gatsby” shortly coming to the movies, but this is a personality that fascinates and confuses at the same time! Interesting and potent historical fiction!
jlking More than 1 year ago
Call Me Zelda is about the friendship between Zelda Fitzgerald and a nurse named Anna, and it brings us into the years after the Fitzgerald party, after the Great Gatsby-like craziness. Scott notoriously used Zelda as his writing muse; Zelda famously fell into ruin, and after that, found her way into Phipps Psychiatric Hospital. From there, CALL ME ZELDA begins. Through the lens of friendship, we watch each woman grow and heal in different ways, and strengthen each other over the course of the novel. I particularly like the way Erika has portrayed Zelda, as sympathetic despite her illness and her famous antics. I also love the tenderness with which she writes about the Fitzgeralds together. It is a must-read novel, on the ways we fail each other and yet can redeem those losses and support each other as well. CALL ME ZELDA helps shine light and meaning into brokenness, and opens up a new dimension to the Fitzgeralds and their place in history. I believe in its theme, that through friendships, we can become a better version of ourselves. I highly recommend Call Me Zelda to readers of historical fiction and to those interested in the Fitzgeralds. A wonderful, thoughtful, and thought-provoking book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Difficult combo even with today why it is considered to be artistic to be drunk drug or psyco is beyond me whatever art that manages to survive is usually flawed because they were not able to use their creative skills not that they were prevented by critique inspite of it all and never selling a picture which were consider awful sane or mad his pictures made it much later
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Link is boss