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Lady Byron and Her Daughters Hardcover – 13 Oct 2015
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"What a lively and captivating story! Julia Markus's reappraisal of Byron's much-maligned wife shows a talented, generous woman who played a vital role in the life of her times." -- Lynne Sharon Schwartz, author of The Writing on the Wall "It is Julia Markus's peculiar gift to rescue great 'lesser lives' of the English Romantic period from undeserved oblivion... To the delight of her devoted readership, Markus has done it again...the book is a treat from start to finish." -- Vivian Gornick, author of The Odd Woman and the City "Julia Markus paints a fascinating portrait of a woman who lived an enormously useful life-rich in detail, brilliantly researched, witty, and insightful." -- Miriam Levine, author of Devotion: A Memoir "I feel as if I'm getting acquainted with Lady Byron for the first time. Julia Markus's interpretation is engaging, accessible, and compassionate." -- Peter Graham, author of Don Juan and Regency England "No one tells a story like Julia Markus... A joy to read and often hilariously funny, the book brilliantly braids together literature, history, and psychology." -- Patricia Cronin, author of Harriet Hosmer: Lost and Found, A Catalogue Raisonne "A genuine contribution to Byron studies... Markus brings perspective to Lady Byron's scandalous marriage, to her relationship with daughter Ada, computer science pioneer, to luminaries such as Charles Babbage, Walter Scott, Queen Victoria, as well as to escaped American slaves... A refreshing portrait of a talented human being complete with her accomplishments and disappointments." -- Arnold Anthony Schmidt, author of Byron and the Rhetoric of Italian Nationalism "Cheers to Julia Markus for rescuing Lady Byron from two centuries of ignominy. She portrays her fascinating cast of characters and their era with style and verve." --Alix Kates Shulman, author of To Love What Is: A Marriage Transformed
"Markus writes with commendable authority..."
"...[a] lucid biography..."--Nature
"The book presents a firm case against history's 'overwhelming devotion to male genius' and gives Lady Byron the attention she deserves." --Country Life
About the Author
Julia Markus, the author of three acclaimed biographies, is the director of creative writing and a professor of English at Hofstra University. She lives in New York City.
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It is a shame that the author feels obliged to write like a gossipy teenager, as this undermines her authority: she is much given to putting in irrelevant opinion that jars: " Reader, prepare for a trainwreck " and phrases instead of sentences: "Her aunt...had ignored her brother's illness. Hadn't sent Sir Ralph a word." as though someone had accidentally sent off her notes to the printer's instead of the final draft. Sometimes she slips in questions: " Then the Byronic twist: 'The woman I mean is Miss Milbanke.' Her niece? " This might work in a novel but in a book where presumably the author isn't making it up as she goes along it just comes across as affected.
Still, worth persisting with even if your teeth grate occasionally.
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