The Forgotten Years
Hardcover ISBN: 0670786020
Based on new archival material, a biography of the ambitious Tudor queen focuses on her life at the height of her power, including revolts in Ireland, riots in the London streets of London and a conspiracy to overthrow her.
Catherine of Aragon
The Spanish Queen of Henry VIII
Hardcover ISBN: 0802779166
Describes the life of the youngest child of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain, whose refusal to divorce England's Henry VIII put her in the center of one history's greatest power struggles between the King and the Catholic Church.
A Nervous Splendor
Paperback ISBN: 014005667x
Recreates an opulent and ominous period in Vienna's history, showing ways in which public events affected the hearts and minds of the Viennese people and the great artists and thinkers who lived among them
Driving the Saudis
A Chauffeur's Tale of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness on Rodeo Drive
Paperback ISBN: 145164003x
An ivy league-educated actress and film producer who worked as a chauffeur for members of the Saudi royal family during their visit to Beverly Hills describes her witness to their opulent lifestyle and the complications, contradictions and corruptions of their wealth. 35,000 first printing.
The Life and Times of Elizabeth II
Hardcover ISBN: 0785835733
Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II has reigned for 64 years, longer than any British monarch in history. During that time the Queen has endured the ups and downs that long life will bring. She was a beacon of hope during and after the Second World War in difficult times when the world faced a precarious future, and she has served as a role model for generations of men and women who continue to be in awe of her commitment to service, sacrifice, and the Commonwealth of nations over which she rules. The abdication of her uncle, Edward VIII, in 1936 turned her family’s world upside-down. When her father was crowned King George VI, Elizabeth was thrust into the eye of the storm as a future queen. A shy and reserved child, she grew into a wise and insightful monarch who has dealt ably with nine British Prime Ministers during her long reign, from Winston Churchill to Theresa May. It was, of course, not always straightforward and the Queen has found herself in hot water several times, most notably during the marriage of Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales. When Diana was tragically killed in a car crash the standing of the Royal Family was probably at its lowest ebb. It is unlikely that we will ever see a monarch reign so long or so effectively again, holding together a disparate group of nations, each with its own aspirations, customs and traditions. Catherine Ryan has written an intriguing biography of one of the most famous women of modern times, who at 91 years old still seems fit and healthy and looks very unlikely to hand over the reins to her successors any time soon.
Paperback ISBN: 0316001945
Her palace shimmered with onyx and gold but was richer still in political and sexual intrigue. Above all else, Cleopatra was a shrewd strategist and an ingenious negotiator. She was married twice, each time to a brother. She waged a brutal civil war against the first and poisoned the second; incest and assassination were family specialties. She had children by Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, two of the most prominent Romans of the day. With Antony she would attempt to forge a new empire, in an alliance that spelled both their ends. Famous long before she was notorious, Cleopatra has gone down in history for all the wrong reasons. Her supple personality and the drama of her circumstances have been lost. In a masterly return to the classical sources, Stacy Schiff boldly separates fact from fiction to rescue the magnetic queen whose death ushered in a new world order.
The Secret Wife of Louis XIV
Francoise D'Aubigne, Madame de Maintenon
Paperback ISBN: 0312430051
Françoise d’Aubigné, marquise de Maintenon and secret wife of the Sun King, Louis XIV, was born in a bleak French prison in 1635, her father a condemned traitor and murderer, her mother the warden’s seduced daughter. A timely pardon and a hopeful Caribbean colonial venture failed to mend the family’s fortunes, and Françoise was reduced to begging in the streets. Yet, armed with beauty, intellect, and shrewd judgment, she was to make her way to the center of power at Versailles, the most opulent and ambitious court in all Europe. At fifteen, she was married off to the forty-two-year-old satirical poet Paul Scarron, a former roué now grievously deformed by rheumatism—“a sort of human Z,” as he described himself. Despite his ailments, Scarron presided over the liveliest and most scandalous literary salon in Paris, and Françoise quickly became its most prized ornament. After Scarron’s death, she enjoyed a merry widowhood in the fashionable Marais district, in the company of the courtesan Ninon de Lenclos and the King’s splendid mistress, Athénaïs de Montespan, who made the young widow governess to her brood of illegitimate children. The appointment transformed Françoise’s life, but was fatal to the temperamental Athénaïs herself, with the King soon turning his attentions to the graceful governess. Françoise was raised to the nobility as Madame de Maintenon—and, unofficially, “Madame de Maintenant,” the lady of the moment. The acclaimed biographer Veronica Buckley traces the extraordinary story of Françoise’s progress from pauper child to salonnière to the compromised position of Louis’s secret wife and uncrowned Queen. An absolute ruler, Louis turned away his many other mistresses to live with Françoise only, trusting her as his closest confidante and remaining in love with her for forty years. Sparkling with the irresistible wit of contemporary chroniclers such as Madame de Sévigné, this exactingly researched biography is a pinnacle of the form. In vibrant colors, The Secret Wife of Louis XIV paints a portrait of Europe in an age of violent change, and the Sun King’s France in the process of becoming its modern self.
The Queen's Bed
An Intimate History of Elizabeth's Court
Paperback ISBN: 1250062306
An Elizabethan expert describes the court of Queen Elizabeth I, painting a vivid picture of the gossip, conspiracy, intrigue and romantic dalliances that surrounded the monarch and the daily lives of the women that attended her. 20,000 first printing.