My MacArthur

Written by Cindy Fazzi
Review by Viviane Crystal

Douglas MacArthur and Isabel Rosario Cooper meet in 1930 in Manila, the Philippines. He’s a successful army leader and she’s an aspiring actress, albeit in small bit-parts. MacArthur is the kind of ego-centered person who expects to get what he wants, and Isabel has the same drive but is blind in many places throughout the plot of this novel. Yes, love is blind in some ways! When MacArthur sees Isabel sing and dance for the first time, infatuation slams him big-time. However, the reality is that anyone wanting Isabel must go through her family first, and he is forced to meet and help her father. The connections start to resemble a sale. However, MacArthur and Isabel share very strong feelings. When MacArthur becomes the first four-star general and achieves the status of one of America’s most powerful men, matters become complicated. His closest advisers tell him to get rid of Isabel, but he initially rejects this advice, insisting Isabel move to Washington, D.C. with him. The die is cast because he keeps her out of sight and refuses to marry her.

The profiles of most famous men depict strong, intelligent, egocentric and determined personalities. Cindy Fazzi depicts the outcome of a personality trait too often ignored: shame. MacArthur’s desire for Isabel is surrounded by shame, which only exacerbates Isabel’s sense of unworthiness. My MacArthur is another aspect of this famous man’s career that deserves attention. Yes, it reads like a novel, but the reader gets so caught up in the story that it feels real and not fiction. Based on real facts, this is light but potent historical fiction.