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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Pre-Raphaelite romance...
For anyone interested in the historical story-lines of the famous Pre-Raphaelite painter, Edward Burne-Jones, this is a fascinating read. At the end of his life he became enamoured of a high-class, society wife and wrote her hundreds of letters expressing this love and his feelings about his paintings. Dimbleby discovered this secret romance of her great-grandmother and...
Published on 4 April 2010 by J. A. Jecko

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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Book
I haven't yet read it, but as usual it arrived on time. I have a lot of Joceline Dimbleby cookery books - but yet to try the novel.
Published 20 months ago by Vicky Spicer


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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Pre-Raphaelite romance..., 4 April 2010
By 
J. A. Jecko (Oxford, U.K.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
For anyone interested in the historical story-lines of the famous Pre-Raphaelite painter, Edward Burne-Jones, this is a fascinating read. At the end of his life he became enamoured of a high-class, society wife and wrote her hundreds of letters expressing this love and his feelings about his paintings. Dimbleby discovered this secret romance of her great-grandmother and went on a detective mission to discover what happened...full of photos and includes, after Burne-Jones death, the impact of WWI on May Gaskell and her daughters Amy and Daphne. Amy's portrait by Burne-Jones is one of his most famous privately commissioned paintings.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Done! Write another book, please., 2 Sept. 2011
By 
H. A. Weedon "Mouser" (North Somercotes, Lincolnshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
This is a well researched, very readable and interesting account of some of Josceline Dimbleby's ancestors and in particular about her great great grandmother, Emma Hill, her great grandmother, Helen Mary (May) Gaskell nee Melville and her great aunt, Amy Bonham. It's a very honest account in which the weaknesses of these and other persons appearing in the biography are aired on an equal level with their strong points. Some readers, more than others, will empathise with these real life characters, but the reader will find that he or she does not have to like them in order to enjoy this well researched, free from waffle account.

May Gaskell's relationship with the Pre-Raphaelite painter, Edward Byrne-Jones, with whom she exchanged a vast amount of correspondence, is of especial interest and readablity. One can only be saddened by the restraints imposed on May Gaskell by the mysoginistic standards of Victorian and Edwardian society as she struggled to realise her true self and capabilities trammelled as she was by its warped standards. Joceline Dimbleby has made such a good job of writing about other matters besides cookery that she should certainly consider writing at least one more non-cookery book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Profound Secret, 10 Feb. 2012
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This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
This book was very special because it charts the history of a family my husband's grandmother worked for in the early 1900s. The book was a fascinating read. When I decided to buy it (having discovered its existence by Googling "Kiddington Hall" (May Gaskell's home), I knew that the most likely place to get it quickly was through Amazon. I was not disappointed. I found it and ordered it in minutes and received it in days (I also read it in days). Thank you Amazon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLANT AND INTERESTING RESEARCH, 17 May 2014
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This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
IT BECAME INCREASINGLY OBVIOUS FROM THE START, THAT THE FAMILY MEMBERS WANTED THEIR DESCENDANT, JOSCELINE DIMBLEBY, TO WRITE THIS BOOK OF THEIR LIVES AND RELATIONSHIPS. THERE WERE SO MANY 'CHANCE ENCOUNTERS' AS JOSCELINE PUT IT, TOO MANY 'COINCIDENCES'! IT WAS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN JOSCELINE'S GREAT-GRANDMOTHER MAY GASKELL AND SIR EDWARD BURNE-JONES THAT CONNECTED ME TO THIS BOOK. I HAD WRITTEN AN ARTICLE ABOUT CICELY MARY BARKER, THE ARTIST MOST WELL-KNOWN FOR HER FLOWER FAIRIES, AND AS SHE LOVED THE WORK OF SIR EDWARD BURNE-JONES I MENTIONED THIS WHEN WRITING ABOUT OTHER PROMINENT ARTISTS OF THE PERIOD, WHICH LED ME TO THE WORK OF WRITER, ANGELA THIRKELL, GRANDAUGHTER OF SIR EDWARD. I AM READING ANGELA'S NOVELS, BUT WHEN I COULD NOT OBTAIN THE NEXT NOVEL IN SEQUENCE AND HAD TO WAIT FOR IT, I READ 'THREE HOUSES' WHICH TOLD THE STORY OF THE HOUSES PROMINENT IN HER CHILDHOOD, INCLUDING HER GRANDFATHER'S! THIS WAS THEN A STEPPING STONE TO JOSCELINE'S BOOK.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read, 27 Feb. 2014
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For anyone interested in the Pre-Raphaelite Edward Burne Jones this is a fascinating well researched and very readable book. I have read several books about EBJ and believed there was no more that I could learn, until I read this gem.
I was really sad to come to the end and will certainly read this book again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I wanted to buy this to learn about Burne-Jones &, 1 Jan. 2015
This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
the personal angle certainly added an emotional twist. It is lovely when writers have a family-connection tale to tell which they can share with us. Highly recommended. I'm reading Lord Birkenhead's Rudyard Kipling at the moment. See also Sisters of Fortune by Jehanne Wake re founders of Baltimore & Maryland (family connection).
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49 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, 11 May 2004
By A Customer
I LOVED THIS BOOK. I finished it, and then read it all over again. You might expect it to be a boring family history, but it reads like a novel. Better than a novel, actually - because all the people (and secrets) are real... and you care about them so much - not least Josceline Dimbleby, who infects you with her fascination for the story. You feel it's a book that was written because it HAD to be written. There is nobody, of any age, that won't enjoy this. I'm going to save on hassle this Christmas and just buy this for everybody. Although... maybe I'll wait till 2005, till it's out in paperback. What's the point in hardbacks anyway? They're expensive, and they dig into your thighs. The publishing industry in this country needs to WAKE UP. Having said all that, if there's one book you should buy in hardback this year, it's this. I borrowed mine. Sorry Josceline Dimbleby.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating biography, 3 Dec. 2012
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This review is from: A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones (Paperback)
An interesting and intimate view into the lives of the people involved in this story. I greatly enjoyed it and would recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing read., 17 Feb. 2014
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A really interesting insight into the life and times of the characters of the era. It made me want to read up more.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Family connections, 3 Mar. 2013
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This book,Ian Fleming's Commandos, The Last Pre-Raphaelites and The Circle of Sisters all have family connections to The Baldwin family and connect to Rudyard Kipling and Poynter
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A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones
A Profound Secret: May Gaskell, her daughter Amy, and Edward Burne-Jones by Josceline Dimbleby (Paperback - 1 Feb. 2005)
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