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Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey by [The Countess Of Carnarvon]
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Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 85 customer reviews

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Length: 369 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product description

Review

An excellent depiction of English aristocratic life...a compelling portrait of the era's lives, deaths, politics, scandals and the war's impact on Porchey and Catherine's family. Lady Carnarvon's narrative is a vivid time-stamp of a tempestuous period in history, aptly incorporating its political situation and social structure, to satisfy history buffs and Anglophiles. (Publisher's Weekly)

Book Description

The follow-up to the international bestseller Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey, this book moves the story into the 1920s, and focuses on the remarkable American heiress who came to reign at Highclere Castle.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 8446 KB
  • Print Length: 369 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (12 Sept. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CIVLUYE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 85 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #96,892 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
"Lady Catherine and the real Downton Abbey" tells the story of the wife of the 6th Earl of Carnarvon from the turn of the 20th Century up until the end of the Second World War and their life at "the real Downton Abbey" - Highclere Castle. It is a fantastic insight into a world that only a few of us will get the chance to experience. The early chapters of the book set out how Catherine Wendall moved from America with her family, met and fell in love with Lord Porchester - the future 6th Earl.

This book is not exclusively above Lady Catherine, it also follows the fortunes of the 6th Earl and their children. The book also offers an interesting insight into what life in the early 20th Century for the privileged classes.

As this book is the follow on book from "Lady Almina and the real Downton Abbey, I did find it useful that I had read the earlier book as I knew some of the family history from this book. However, reading the first book is not essential but I think I got more out of the current book by having read the book about Almina.

Downton fans beware - this book had nothing really to do with the TV series and there are no references to it throughout the book.

This is an excellent book and a must for those interested in social history. I do hope that the Countess of Carnarvon follows it up with a book about the 7th Earls wife.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this insight into 1920's high society quite interesting. Would have been better I think if I could have got the residents of Downton out of my head when I read it. Lady Catherine certainly had a lot to put up with from the 6th Earl, but she was clever enough to get out and live her own life.
On the side of the Earl he did inherit the title when his father died quite young. It definitely didn't have anything to do with the Curse of King Tut. His mother certainly didn't help him, she got married again to an invalid and virtually cut him off.
For readers of factual autobiographies I think they will enjoy this.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It was a very good book, bringing to life the Swinging Twenties and the lack of luck that poor Porchy had in choosing the right woman. I particularly liked the author's character studies of the main participants and felt that I had a better knowledge of Highclere Castle (Downton Abbey) a portrait of which was vividly painted.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The basis of this elegantly written sketch on the life and times of Catherine Wendell, the Sixth Countess of Carnarvon - with a fleeting glance at Tilly Losch, the other Sixth Countess- is that it's another Highclere spin off to cash-in on its television fame. Both women married Henry, ( better known as Porchey Carnarvon) the Sixth Earl, who spent his life hunting, shooting and flirting.

The Earl was a rascal who rode race horses and was an over active sex pest to womankind. The Carnarvons display courage in declaring the American born Lady Catherine had a drink problem with bouts of depression and despair.

Having made a close study of Catherine's life ( and spoken with people who knew her) I conclude that it is not as simple as that. The reasons for Catherine almost never being sober are complicated and alas not well enough explained here.

The ghost writer could have improved the reader's understanding of Porchey living with Catherine's drink issue by veering away from the copious and meaningless references to the Duff Coopers in the book ( since neither Diana nor Duff make any worthwhile reference to Highclere in their letters/ memoirs/ diaries ) and instead draw ideas from Debo Devonshire's worthy and compelling account of her husband, Andrew Cavendish's darker moments of being heavilly drink infused in the excellent book, Wait For Me!

I know precisely what Catherine confided to Almina ( the Fifth Countess, Porchey's mother ). From that account there are stark differences ( not tackled here ), Catherine carried burdens including the horrors of a shattered childhood after her father died suddenly when she was aged eleven.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book, when I was looking for books concerning King Edward the 8th! I didn't understand, why it was listed alongside, other books which were more relevant to my original request. However, after seeing it appear so many times, I thought I'd give it a try, and I'm so glad that I did! It's a 'delight'! It is a book that is so well written, by some-one who really knows her subject, and loves it too! I found that when I first picked up the book, to begin to just look at the first few pages, I couldn't put it down!! Obviously, Lady Carnarvon, has done her research, and presents Lady Catherine in such a lovely friendly way, as to make both Lady Catherine, and the present Lady Carnarvon, seem so kindly and very approachable. Although, the' Family', will always be very distant from the likes of me,- I now feel as if,- just for a few days, I was, perhaps - looking through the stair-rails - at a life that is now so different. The 'Aristocracy' have always been thought of as the 'Them' to our 'us', but, this didn't seem to be the case at all, and they all seemed so 'Real', with their heartaches and their delights, just like the rest of us. A Lovely Book.
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