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The Franchise Affair
Spieldauer: 8 Std. und 9 Min.
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Marion Sharpe and her mother seem an unlikely duo to be found on the wrong side of the law. Quiet and ordinary, they have led a peaceful and unremarkable life at their country home, The Franchise. Unremarkable that is, until the police turn up with a demure young woman on their doorstep.Not only does Betty Kane accuse them of kidnap and abuse, she can back up her claim with a detailed description of the attic room in which she was kept, right down to the crack in its round window.
Entertaining and different, this is an enjoyable study of a flawed yet characterful Prince of Wales seen through the eyes of the women in his life. Edward Vll, who gave his name to the Edwardian Age and died in 1911, was King of England for the final 10 years of his life. He was 59 when at last he came to the throne. Known as Bertie, the eldest son of Victoria and Albert, he was bullied by both his parents.
A stranger enters the inner sanctum of the Ashby family posing as Patrick Ashby, the heir to the family’s sizeable fortune. The stranger, Brat Farrar, has been carefully coached on Patrick’s mannerisms, appearance and every significant detail of Patrick’s early life, up to his 13th year when he disappeared and was thought to have drowned himself.
By the end of World War I, Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel had revolutionised women's dress. But dress was the most visible aspect of more profound changes she helped to bring about. During the course of her extraordinary journey, from abject poverty to a new kind of glamour, she would help forge the idea of the modern woman. Unearthing an astonishing life, this remarkable biography shows how the most influential designer of her century became synonymous with a rebellious and progressive style.
In the summer of 1972, Famagusta, in Cyprus, is the most desirable resort in the Mediterranean, a city bathed in the glow of good fortune. An ambitious couple open the island's most spectacular hotel, where Greek and Turkish Cypriots work in harmony. Two neighbouring families, the Georgious and the Özkans, are among many who moved to Famagusta to escape the years of unrest and ethnic violence elsewhere on the island. But beneath the city's façade of glamour and success, tension is building.
Six Brilliant and Extraordinary Society Hostesses Between the Wars - A Spectacle of Celebrity, Talent, and Burning Ambition
Spieldauer: 12 Std.
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
Queen Bees looks at the lives of six remarkable women who made careers out of being society hostesses, including Lady Astor, who went on to become the first female MP, and Mrs Greville, who cultivated relationships with Edward VII, as well as Lady Londonderry, Lady Cunard, Laura Corrigan and Lady Colefax. Told with wit, verve and heart, Queen Bees is the story of a form of societal revolution and the extraordinary women who helped it happen.
In this rich and memorable evocation of the fictional South Riding of Yorkshire are the lives, loves and sorrows of the central characters. There is Sarah Burton, fiery young headmistress; Robert Carne of Maythorpe Hall, a councillor tormented by his own disastrous marriage; Jo Astell, a socialist fighting poverty and his own illness; and Mrs Beddows, the first woman Alderman of the district (like Winifred's own mother).
Dex works as a gardener for Dr Jefferson at his home on Hexam Place in Pimlico: an exclusive street inhabited by the rich, and serviced by the not so rich. The hired help, a motley assortment of au pairs, drivers and cleaners, decide to form the St Zita Society (Zita was the patron saint of domestic servants) as an excuse to meet at the pub and air their grievances. When Dex is invited to one of these meetings, the others find that he is a strange man, ill at ease with human beings....
It’s 1954 and Adam Carter is 12 years old, an only child with no friends nor any self-confidence. His father Edward is a bully of a man. A successful and ruthless businessman, he breeds fear into the heart of his family. Adam’s mother Peggy is too cowed to protect her son, so Adam’s only support comes in the shape of Jake Wallis, the school bus driver. One particular afternoon, when Adam is his last drop of the day, Jake decides to accompany him along the darkening wood land to his house.
Anne Bronte's novel is the story of the beautiful and mysterious Helen Graham, who arrives at Wildfell Hall suddenly one day. No one knows who she is or where she has come from, and Gilbert Markham, a young farmer who has fallen in love with her, sets out to find some answers. This is an ambitious and successful work that is a real pleasure to listen to.
Five stories from influential women writers of the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century. New Zealand-born Katherine Mansfield settled in England where she wrote a series of short stories that are widely recognized as among the finest of the 20th century for their economy, clarity, sensitivity and effect. "The Garden Party" is one of her most famous, while "Daughters of the Late Colonel" shows a wonderful sense of wit.
Based on Charlotte Bronte's work as a governess in Brussels, Villette concerns the life of Lucy Snowe, an English girl who obtains a post at a girl's school in Belgium. With few friends and little money, Lucy concentrates on her work. However, she starts to find solace in an unlikely suitor. Could there be more to life than loneliness?
The story of Villette is told in flashback by Lucy Snowe, who tells of the trials of her young self first in England, and then in Belgium. Charlotte Bronte does not paint a romantic picture of an unsupported woman's life - her heroine has to endure straitened circumstances, insecurity and humiliation. However, despite everything that happens to her, Lucy is a warm and courageous character who makes the most of the opportunities that occur.
When a beautiful young woman, thought to be recently widowed, suddenly moves into the half ruined Wildfell Hall with her five year old son, young squire Gilbert Markham and the local residents are intrigued. Gilbert meets the aloof newcomer Helen Graham by chance, falls in love with her, and she with him. Their passion is held in check by her mysterious relationship with the handsome but cruel Arthur Huntingdon. Her dramatic flight from him is revealed in her journal – a story within a story.
Florence Stanville is a woman with a past. When she moves to Guisethorpe on the east coast of England, the townsfolk are intrigued by the glamorous and mysterious stranger, with her flame-red hair and abrupt manners. Florence doesn’t care about the gossips - she’s drawn to the peaceful seaside town by the pull of her childhood, when she lived for a brief but happy time with her beloved late mother. The riddle of those days remains, and now Florence can only snatch at half-remembered memories and shadowy figures in her dreams.
Stephen Hawking is one of the most remarkable figures of our time, a Cambridge genius who has earned international celebrity as a brilliant theoretical physicist and become an inspiration and revelation to those who have witnessed his courageous triumph over disability. This is Hawking's life story by Kitty Ferguson, who has had special help from Hawking himself and his close associates and who has a gift for translating the language of theoretical physics for non-scientists.
From its dawn in the 1660s to its twilight in the 1960s, Cliveden was an emblem of elite misbehaviour and intrigue. Conceived by the Duke of Buckingham as a retreat for his scandalous affair with Anna-Maria, Countess of Shrewsbury, the house later served as the backdrop for the Profumo affair. In the 300 years between, the house was occupied by a dynasty of remarkable women each of whom left their mark on this great house.
Catherine de Medici's father-in-law, King Francis of France, was the perfect Renaissance knight, the movement's exemplar and its Gallic interpreter. An aesthete, diplomat par excellence, and contemporary of Machiavelli, Francis was the founder of modern France, whose sheer force of will and personality molded his kingdom into the first European superpower. Arguably the man who introduced the Renaissance to France, Francis was also the prototype Frenchman - a national identity was modeled on his character.