The current Countess of Carnarvon tells the story behind Highclere Castle, the real-life inspiration for the hit PBS show, Downton Abbey, and the life of one of its most famous inhabitants, Lady Almina, the basis of the fictional character, Lady Cora Crawley. Lady Almina was the daughter of a wealthy industrialist, Alfred de Rothschild, who married his daughter off at a young age, her dowry serving as the crucial link in the effort to preserve the Earl of Carnarvon's ancestral home. Throwing open the doors of Highclere Castle to tend to the wounded of World War I, Lady Almina distinguished herself as a brave and remarkable woman.
From an early age, Margaret Fuller provoked and dazzled New England’s intellectual elite. Her famous Conversations changed women’s sense of how they could think and live; her editorship of the Transcendentalist literary journal the Dial shaped American Romanticism. Megan Marshall tells the story of how Fuller, who was tired of Boston, accepted Horace Greeley’s offer to be the New-York Tribune’s front-page columnist.
In 1928, Rosina Harrison, a no-nonsense, whip-smart girl from the country, arrived at the illustrious Astor family household to take up her new position as personal maid to the infamously temperamental Lady Nancy Astor. What no one expected was that Rosina's new job would result in a decades-long friendship. For 35 years, from the parties thrown for royalty and trips across the globe, to the air raids during WWII, Rose was by Lady Astor's side and behind the scenes, keeping everything running smoothly. Like Downton Abbey, ROSE is a captivating insight into the great wealth "upstairs" and the endless work "downstairs."
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Thanksgiving marked the official start of the holiday season, which means we won’t be short on cheer or great movies and television shows to watch this month. Much like the chicken and the egg, we don’t know which came first, but quality entertainment and holiday spirit certainly have always had a long, happy and interdependent relationship. So, as with our spiral hams, let’s dig right in and unravel this month’s books on screen.