The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family

The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family By Mary S. Lovell, The Mitford Girls The Biography of an Extraordinary Family This is the story of a close loving family splintered by the violent ideologies of Europe between the wars Jessica was a Communist Debo became the Duchess of Devonshire Nancy was one of the best sell
  • Title: The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family
  • Author: Mary S. Lovell
  • ISBN: 9780316858687
  • Page: 101
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family By Mary S. Lovell, This is the story of a close, loving family splintered by the violent ideologies of Europe between the wars Jessica was a Communist Debo became the Duchess of Devonshire Nancy was one of the best selling novelists of her day the ethereally beautiful Diana was the most hated woman in England and Unity Valkyrie, born in Swastika, Alaska, would become obsessed with AdolfThis is the story of a close, loving family splintered by the violent ideologies of Europe between the wars Jessica was a Communist Debo became the Duchess of Devonshire Nancy was one of the best selling novelists of her day the ethereally beautiful Diana was the most hated woman in England and Unity Valkyrie, born in Swastika, Alaska, would become obsessed with Adolf Hitler.
    The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family By Mary S. Lovell,
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      Published :2020-04-02T15:32:31+00:00

    About "Mary S. Lovell"

    1. Mary S. Lovell

      Mary was an accountant and company director for 20 years before becoming a writer She wrote her first book in 1981 at the age of 40, while recovering from a broken back which was the result of a riding accident She returned to accountancy but during the following 5 years she also published two further non fiction books that were written in her spare time.She lives in the New Forest in Hampshire, England.

    532 thoughts on “The Mitford Girls: The Biography of an Extraordinary Family”

    1. The Sisters The saga of the Mitford Family What an eccentric and yet fascinating family the Mitford s were.I had a copy of this book in paperback on my bookshelf for quite a time and decided to also purchase it as an audio so as I could listen as well as read BIG MISTAKE as the audio version is dreadful I quickly switched back to my old reliable paperback and so glad I read this Biography as what a wonderful and absorbing read it was.I thought I knew a little of the history of the Mitford sister [...]


    2. Of course this is full of wonderful information about fascinating people but Lovell bends over backwards to vindicate Diana for her fascism and palling around with Nazis, while pilloring Jessica for every minor dido or appearance of hypocrisy which, as an aristo communist, there was plenty of material I didn t need long passages scolding someone for bad manners because she eloped at 19, followed by passages explaining how taking tea with Hitler was a perfectly normal and excusable social nicety [...]


    3. This book audiobook proves that in fact a very good book can be destroyed by a terrible narrator Annie Wauters does the narration The ups and downs of voice inflection should tell you when a question is being posed or when a sentence is over Wauter s intonation was consistently wrong She stops in the middle of a sentence, and it sounds like the sentence is over Surprise, surprise It isn t She continues with the last half of the sentence Time and time again I was confused Such reading makes it al [...]


    4. Before reading The Mitford Girls The Biography of an Extraordinary Family by Mary S Lovell, I had already read Hons and Rebels The Classic Memoir of One of Last Century s Most Extraordinary Families by Jessica Mitford, Decca The Letters of Jessica Mitford, and the first two novels by Nancy Mitford.Mary S Lovell does an extraordinary job of condensing down the lives of the Mitford girls, their parents, their brother, and numerous partners, children, grandchildren, and various other notable relati [...]


    5. It s so unreal, you almost think it was fiction a writer couldn t come up with this.The Mitford Sisters from oldest Nancy, renowned author, to youngest Deborah, Duchess of Devonshire, who married the next in line who became Duke upon the death of his brother, who was himself married to Kathleen Kick Kennedy Yes, related to and friends with the Kennedys Next youngest is Decca, who with first husband ran off to Spain fighting with the Communist brigade against Franco and then emigrating to America [...]


    6. A cracking read in parts, hence why I finished the thing, but seriously marred by obsequious apologia for the Fascist sympathies of most of the family and their peers all how could they have known and yes, she laughed and laughed when she heard about Nazi atrocities, but she was also very charming and what else was she expecting than for the death of her infant daughter to be mocked, after all, her communist sympathies were very uncouth What is the root of this tendency in biographers to defend [...]


    7. When you read about other people s lives, you learn quickly that you are very lucky The Mitfords, an upper class English family with a long history, have a crazy father, and a mother who seems to have lost control The girls themselves run the political gamut from Nazi to Communist One of the great things about this book for me is that it opened my eyes to a whole Fascistic side of England that I was completely unaware of We learn all about Oswald Mosely, founder of the Black Shirts, who marries [...]


    8. The Mitford sisters split between love affairs with fascists, with Hitler, with the Communist party, and with the written word plus two spare sisters mainly concerned with home and garden, albeit on a rather grand scale make for a fascinating read and Mary Lovell manages it all quite nicely with plenty of juicy details of Unity s close personal friendship with Hitler and subsequent suicide attempt when England declared war on Germany Diana s three year war time internment along with her fascist [...]


    9. The subjects of the biography were certainly very interesting and it would have been really nice to read a book that is less defensive of anything Diana and Oswald Mosley did, and less dismissive of their racism I also can t understand why the author seemed so hostile towards Jessica.


    10. I kept reading because the material and the quotations from primary sources were so interesting, but the author is remarkably obtuse at times likes to follow up any mentions of the Nazis with a footnote going BUT DON T FORGET THE COMMUNISTS WERE BAD TOO, BECAUSE STALIN, which is a peculiarly adolescent approach to 20th century history whiffs slightly of homophobia after Pamela s marriage ends, she gets exactly one further mention in the narrative when the author refuses to consider any evidence [...]


    11. This is the biography of a family, an aristocratic family of influence, covering the period from World War I to the time of publication The principals are David 1878 1958 , Baron Redesdale, Winston Churchill s cousin, the father, and Sydney Bowles 1880 1963 , his wife, and their seven children, six of them female Of the girls, Nancy 1904 1973 became prominent as a novelist Pamela 1907 1994 became the wife of millionaire physicist Derek Jackson Diana 1910 2003 became the wife of Sir Oswald Mosley [...]


    12. so, the author was basically an apologist for diana mosley, which bugged it seems diana was quite a useful source for the book, and possibly her charm worked on lovell i felt every time that the politics of the Mosleys came up, the author had some kind of excuse ready yes, communism was bad mmkay, but as the author points out herself, jessica was much prepared to acknowledge its evils than diana ever was those of the nazis lovell s also a little defensive about the father of the sisters, even t [...]


    13. The Mitford Sisters From Best To Worst Please note that this is the definitive and authoritative ranking of The Mitford Sisters, with the only flexibility allocated to the 2nd and the 3rd slots 1 Nancy2 Decca 3 Pam 4 Debo5 Unity Valkyrie6 Diana Decca is great, and a communist Pam is also great and was super into Barnyard animals, you get to pick whoever is your type for 2 Mitford Sister.If you know someone whose personal rankings deviate from this list, they re crazy Run Save yourself, little an [...]


    14. I was amazed while reading this book that I d never heard of this family before yet their lives unfolded almost as a mirror to reflect what was happening important in history at that time politically and culturally ie WWII, Nazism, Facism, Communism, Kennedys, etc I really enjoyed this book and thought it was very detailed and well written I especially enjoyed the first half of their lives growing up and around WWII.This story is basically about 6 sisters who had a privileged, though in my estim [...]


    15. The author is a coward and an apologist The only sister she takes a disapproving tone about is Jessica, the only decent one.I plowed through the book somehow, hoping to read that Unity and Diana suffered.It made me sick to read about that Hitler loving Unity being cruel to an elderly Jewish woman trying to find a train station in Germany Perhaps when Unity was disabled her own doing and trying to use the train, someone was horrid to her.


    16. Before the Hilton sisters, before the Kardashians, the It sisters were 6 women of aristocratic English upbringing who each went very different ways, but still held on to the bonds of sisterhood In the early twentieth century, these were the Mitfords return return This biography is very comprehensive and extensive, considering the number of characters that demand attention Each sister is dynamic and given her due, even Pam, the Mitford sister of whom little is published because she was the least [...]


    17. The Sisters is a group biography of the famous Mitford sisters I was particularly interested in information about the lives of Pamela and Deborah, the less famous sisters, and although they re necessarily less in the spotlight than Nancy, Diana, Unity, and Jessica, I still felt as though I d learned far about them than I d gathered from any other source.Lovell states up front in the introduction that she was trying to explore the richness of the personalities, not to judge them in this she has [...]


    18. This Saga of the Mitford Family was better than a good novel You couldn t make this up An eccentric, aristocratic English family father was in the House of Lords with six daughters who grew up to be so different from each other They were related to the Churchills and Winston helped them out than once They were also connected to the Kennedy s by marriage Two of the daughters became famous as fascists, one a communist, one Duchess, one famous novelist and just one who kept a low profile along wit [...]


    19. Este es una historia de las hermanas de Mitford familia Si, la familia con mucho popularidad en las 1900s Diana es La Hermana , mientras las otras hermanas son despues ella Este familia es popularidad con Alta Sociedad , pero ellos tiene no mas dinero solo conecciones con rico gente Me gusta la historia, pero me no siento sympatica para las hermanas Ellas eran adultas, y quieran vivir sus vidas por emotion y excitacion Yo encontro ellas interesante, pero nada muy especial Este es bueno libro par [...]


    20. A well researched and well written biography of the six fascinating Mitford sisters, spanning not only their individual lives but also one of the most eventful periods in European history, from the 20s to the 60s and beyond.Why only three stars At first I had a hard time putting my finger on why I didn t enjoy this , but I guess it comes down to two things I expected a lighter read The only thing I knew about the Mitfords was what I gathered from Nancy s semi autobiographical novel The Pursuit o [...]


    21. The Mitford girls are utterly fascinating, and anyone who s even a little bit interested in the history of ideas in 20th century Europe, or the English aristocracy between the wars, will probably find something to like in this book Lovell writes their story well However, couple of things about the book did annoy me a bit Nancy Mitford s Pursuit of Love and Love in Cold Climate are novels, they re fiction No matter how much she borrowed from reality, she used her imagination and skill as a writer [...]


    22. This is how these things happen in my world when I read Kendall Haley s book, The Day I Became an Autodidact I became intrigued by her favorite author, Nancy Mitford This is the story of the whole wacked out bloomin family Lord and Lady Redesdale, Nancy the writer, Pam the country woman, beautiful Diana the fascist s mistress , Deborah the Duchess of Devonshire, Decca the muckraking journalist and Communist, Tom the brother and Unity, Hitler s girlfriend And you thought your family was screwed u [...]


    23. Mostan ban t k sok non fictiont olvasok Nem tudom megmondani mi rt, de nem is fontos Mes ltem ugye, hogy t k v letlen l kattantam r a Mitford n v rekre, mert k t k nyvben is szembej ttek velem s h t hogy az istenbe ne lenne rdekes 6 l nytestv r a XX sz zad elej r l, akik k z tt volt fasiszta meg kommunista meg r n s az sszes arisztrokrata volt.Im dtam ezt a k nyvet B r nem reg ny form tum , hanem dokumentum jelleg r s, rettent en lvezetes volt Lovell narr ci ja kellemes, mes l s s a korszak miat [...]


    24. This is an exhaustively researched, compelling read about a family blessed cursed with no shortage of drama Like other reviewers, I found myself growing a little frustrated with Mary Lovell s condescension toward Jessica alongside her minimization of Diana and Unity s behaviors I can only assume that the fact that Diana was still living when this book was completed led Lovell to paint Diana in a flattering light, but it is hard to stomach excusing Diana s support of Fascism in light of the horr [...]


    25. If you re wondering who the Mitford sisters are, you re not alone The author a Brit confirms in the intro that anyone under age 50 looked at her cluelessly when she said she was writing their biography They were huge celebrities in England in the 30s 60s, but I would guess even older American readers wouldn t know who they were.In my opinion, knowing nothing about them made the book even better This was a hardcore example of truth being stranger than fiction I don t want to ruin any surprises fo [...]


    26. Loved, loved, LOVED it This is a really fascinating biography of the Mitford Sisters 6 sisters who were born into a minor aristocratic British family in the early 1900s and went on to become quite well known for their very unique and individual lives I d always heard references to the Mitford girls but never really knew exactly who they were so I decided to find out I had previously really enjoyed Lovell s biography of Bess of Hardwick so I thought this would be a good one to start withere are a [...]


    27. This book was insane, but also one of the most enlightening books I ve read in a long time It was embarrassing to realize how little I know or remember about the years that led up to WWII I m going to blame it on a science focused preliminary education , and the motif that really impressed me was the massive, terrible, tidal wave of momentum that led up to the second great war The Sisters makes you think a lot about human nature and how ethics begin with the smallest actions I once interviewed t [...]


    28. guess i m not giving this one back any Elise insists I read this rivetingly intense history lesson Rivetingly intense I say, old chap, here comes Lord Smartingford of Braintonshire Shall we dine upon a nice cup of tea, then We can discuss the economy, and the global situ AYYY tion, and ever so many other matters I am so very versed in such matters, reading as do I The Economist, just as soon as the postman delivers it by the estate, don t you know I find that only the right cracking coverage of [...]


    29. The history, the glamour, the glitz, the history, the girls, the silliness, the history, who they met,and knewe history this explains it all.did I mention the history I enjoyed this book very much and it s details,and now I am interested in reading Nancy s novels


    30. An interesting read for those with English roots such as myself Shocking in that these 3 aristocratic young ladies of the 30s and 40s in England did the things they did Well put together and gives a totally different view of nazism, fascism and communism during that time I read some other reviews It seems amazing that Unity and Diana never saw the horrors Hitler performed Did they just ignore reality Or was he so magnetic that they were fooled and just enjoyed his attention When I see his speech [...]


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