Nicole Nobody (Nicole Milinaire, Nicole Russell the Duchess of Bedford)
A fast-paced account of this charismatic woman's life. What makes some people so interesting and yes, dazzling? Is it a blessing or a curse? It all depends on your point of view, I guess.
I enjoy reading biographies of people who accomplish things in their life. Not just showpieces, not just fluff. Not someone who stands around looking good because their stylist picked something suitable that day. People with guts, people with intelligence, people with wit. This lady, although born into privilege, was a hard worker and suffered greatly during World War II. And get a load of this experience that she had in France during the end of the war: (translated from the French)
"About thirty American soldiers were heading toward me. They were the first Americans I had seen in my life and they were consistent with the idea I held of them: tall Texas Rangers, tanned and robust. They were the "shock" troops, who led the American advance. But they were wild, so much so that they had to impose a curfew on them, especially in Paris.
Two of them seized my bicycle and began to act like idiots. Others were dragging me into the grass and began to undress me. I fought tooth and nail, throwing punches and kicking and screaming. I was almost naked and all of my hairpins fell out when a band of farmers came armed with clubs. Their blows drove away the military men who abandoned the field with bursts of laughter and happily set out again for the reconquering of Paris.
I resumed my journey towards the capital, wondering about these extraordinary people who were willing to stop in the middle of a war for a girl."
Well, that gives you some idea of the gumption this woman had and also how she took life in stride. She was an excellent mother, she was faithful to her husband and supported him in every project (not always easy) and she did some amazing things in television long before any woman had put a foot in the door.
If you want some good reading from an intelligent, accomplished woman, this is the book for you.