'As he turned ... he had the extraordinary impression of a man in full armour rearing up in front of him ... It was the last thing he saw, before he hurtled downwards to a certain death' An untimely death and the reappearance of a ghost lead television reporter Jemima Shore into a mysterious case of sex, violence and the supernatural. When the butler plummets from the battlements of Lackland Court, it becomes clear that the ghost of the legendary Civil War poet and soldier, Decimus Meredith, is not the only suspect. Jemima must look to history and delve deep into the ancient hall's past to solve yet another baffling mystery.
Jemima starts researching a ghost story involving a murder investigation. The victims: the 17th Viscount Lackland and his butler. The suspect is the ghost of the first Viscount Lackland. The next possible victim is the handsome 18th Viscount Lackland.
'Was that what you thought - that you would come back, come back here to beautiful Lark, and get away with it, did you expect that? I can hardly believe it, even of you...' A series of murders have shocked the sleepy, rural village of Lark. The deaths all coincide with the reappearance of actress Christabel Herriot - it is clear that someone has decided her return is not to be tolerated. Amidst the gossip surrounding her reckless affair, Christabel decides to resume her theatrical career, joining a company performing at the Larminster Festival. Jemima Shore has been asked to present a programme on the Festival, so when it becomes clear that Christabel's life is in serious danger, Jemima is on the case again.
Jemima Shore investigates a murder involving a famous actress, Christabel Cartwright
Biography of Oliver Cromwell, the Lord Protector of England, by a leading British historian.
In England, November 5 is Guy Fawkes Day, when fireworks displays commemorate the shocking moment in 1605 when government authorities uncovered a secret plan to blow up the House of Parliament--and King James I along with it. A group of English Catholics, seeking to unseat the king and reintroduce Catholicism as the state religion, daringly placed thirty-six barrels of gunpowder in a cellar under the Palace of Westminster. Their aim was to ignite the gunpowder at the opening of the Parliamentary session. Though the charismatic Catholic, Robert Catesby, was the group's leader, it was the devout Guy Fawkes who emerged as its most famous member, as he was the one who was captured and who revealed under torture the names of his fellow plotters. In the aftermath of their arrests, conditions grew worse for English Catholics, as legal penalties against them were stiffened and public sentiment became rabidly intolerant.In a narrative that reads like a gripping detective story, Antonia Fraser has untangled the web of religion, politics, and personalities that surrounded that fateful night of November 5. And, in examining the lengths to which individuals will go for their faith, she finds in this long-ago event a reflection of the religion-inspired terrorism that has produced gunpowder plots of our own time.
Short biographies of ancient and modern heroes and heroines, some mythological and some real.
Beginning with the reign of George I, this volume goes on to discuss the life and rule of Queen Victoria, whose seventy years on the throne saw the zenith of Britain's power abroad and a changing world at home.
From treachery in the Caribbean to mischief in the Mediterranean, from murderous drama to sleek black comedy, from a baffling number of suspects to a single confrontation with a maniacal rapist, here is a tantalising and varied excursion round motives and methods in the realm of crime - a collection of wittily told and deftly turned stories, with a twist.
A collection of Antonia Fraser's compelling stories exploring the dark hearts and lethal secrets of criminals. This collection features the tale of the jealous wife who engineers revenge for the lovers who wronged her.
Nine short stories, most of them featuring ace sleuth Jemima Shore.
Investigating Jemima Shore, biting the biter as it were, is not exactly an easy task since there is little co-operation to be expected from the person concerned: like most professional interviewers, Jemima hates being interviewed. Under the circumstances, we may as well start with her entry in Who's Who.
In "Death of An Old Dog," Gavin's decision to have her new husband's aged spaniel put down leads to a strange deal and a tragic end. "Doctor Zeit" deals disturbingly with death and intuition. In "Boots," Emily finds a way of dealing with her mother's suitor.
A comprehensive biography. Antonia Fraser tells about the life of King Charles II step-by-step, guides the reader through the ups and downs, the horrible tales of the civil war, the lonely days of a king-in-exile, the restoration and his actual reign.
Updated with a new chapter on the Windsors, including the death of Diana, this reference offers a concise guide to the great dynasties of English royalty.
Louis XIV, the highly-feted "Sun King", was renowned for his political and cultural influence and for raising France to a new level of prominence in seventeenth-century Europe. And yet, as Antonia Fraser keenly describes, he was equally legendary in the domestic sphere. Indeed, a panoply of women -- his wife Anne; mistresses such as Louise de la Vallière, Athénaïs de Montespan, and the puritanical Madame de Maintenon; and an array of courtesans -- moved in and out of the court. The highly visible presence of these women raises many questions about their position in both Louis XIV's life and in France at large. With careful research and vivid, engaging prose, Fraser makes the multifaceted life of one of the most famous European monarchs accessible and vibrantly current.From the Trade Paperback edition.
The letters are organized into the following headings: Declarations, Pleas, Rejections, Nature of Love, Total Love, About Letters, Beginnings, Endings, In Brief.
An utterly riveting and intensely moving book by one of the world's finest biographers. Never before has the life of Marie Antoinette been told so intimately and with such authority. The eighteenth-century French queen whose excesses became legend, Marie Antoinette was blamed for instigating the French Revolution. In this lavishly illustrated biography, best-selling author Antonia Fraser portrays a woman whose journey from palace to guillotine was doomed by her innocence and the manipulations of theancien régime. Antonia Fraser takes us behind the scenes to tell the story of the fourteen-year-old Archduchess of Austria's arrival at the French court of Versailles, betrothed to the future King Louis XVI. Hostage to her mother Empress Maria Theresa's foreign policy, Marie Antoinette was immediately accused of political interference by the French, yet she was not interested in state affairs, preferring to play a gracious, philanthropic role, patronizing the arts, especially music. Fraser weaves a richly detailed account of Marie Antoinette's journey from an innocent, unsophisticated young girl into a magnificently courageous woman who, in the last days of theancien régime, defied her enemies at her trial with consummate intelligence, arousing the admiration of even the most hostile revolutionaries. Brilliantly written,Marie Antoinetteis a work of impeccable scholarship. Drawing on a wealth of letters and other archival materials, Antonia Fraser successfully avoids the hagiography of some of the French queen's admirers and the misogyny of many of her critics.
Mary Queen of Scots passed her childhood in France and married the Dauphin to become Queen of France at the age of sixteen. Widowed less than two years later, she returned to Scotland as Queen after an absence of thirteen years. Her life then entered its best known phase: the early struggles with John Knox, and the unruly Scottish nobility; the fatal marriage to Darnley and his mysterious death; her marriage to Bothwell, the chief suspect, that led directly to her long English captivity at the hands of Queen Elizabeth; the poignant and extraordinary story of her long imprisonment that ended with the labyrinthine Babington plot to free her, and her execution at the age of forty-four.
She was the quintessential queen: statuesque, regal, dazzlingly beautiful. Her royal birth gave her claim to the thrones of two nations; her marriage to the young French dauphin promised to place a third glorious crown on her noble head.<P> Instead, Mary Stuart became the victim of her own impulsive heart, scandalizing her world with a foolish passion that would lead to abduction, rape and even murder. Betrayed by those she most trusted, she would be lured into a deadly game of power, only to lose to her envious and unforgiving cousin, Elizabeth I. Here is her story, a queen who lost a throne for love, a monarch pampered and adored even as she was led to her beheading, the unforgettable woman who became a legend for all time.
A brief and manageable portion of the Fraser-edited and much-touted Lives of the Kings and Queens of England.
A moving testament to modern literature's most celebrated marriage: that of the greatest playwright of our age, Harold Pinter, and the beautiful and famous prize-winning biographer, Antonia Fraser.In this exquisite memoir, Antonia Fraser recounts the life she shared with the internationally renowned dramatist. In essence, it is a love story and a marvelously insightful account of their years together. Must You Go? is based on Fraser's recollections and on the diaries she has kept since October 1968. She shares Pinter's own revelations about his past, as well as observations by his friends.From the Hardcover edition.
Lord Saffron, one of the young bloods at Oxford University, is heir to a considerable fortune. But while making a documentary about the exotic lifestyles of the university's over-privileged set, Jemima Shore discovers that this handsome young man, with his lavish dances and sumptuous weekend parties, is not quite what he seems. And when a student is murdered and a series of attempts are made on Saffron's life, Jemima realises that she has started a terrible chain of events...
After a confession by a dying midwife throws Saffron's birth and bloodline into doubt, Jemima's interest in a documentary about over-privileged undergraduates perks up considerably. Then a student is murdered, drawing Jemima into a case that will demand the utmost of her skills of detection.
Antonia Fraser's Perilous Question is a dazzling re-creation of the tempestuous two-year period in Britain's history leading up to the passing of the Great Reform Bill in 1832, a narrative which at times reads like a political thriller.The era, beginning with the accession of William IV, is evoked in the novels of Trollope and Thackeray, and described by the young Charles Dickens as a cub reporter. It is lit with notable characters. The reforming heroes are the Whig aristocrats led by Lord Grey, members of the richest and most landed cabinet in history yet determined to bring liberty, which would whittle away their own power, to the country. The all-too-conservative opposition was headed by the Duke of Wellington, supported by the intransigent Queen Adelaide, with hereditary memories of the French Revolution. Finally, there were revolutionaries, like William Cobbett, the author of Rural Rides, the radical tailor Francis Place, and Thomas Attwood of Birmingham, the charismatic orator. The contest often grew violent. There were urban riots put down by soldiers and agricultural riots led by the mythical Captain Swing. The underlying grievance was the fate of the many disfranchised people. They were ignored by a medieval system of electoral representation that gave, for example, no votes to those who lived in the new industrial cities of Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield, and Birmingham, while allocating two parliamentary representatives to a village long since fallen into the sea and, most notoriously, Old Sarum, a green mound in a field. Lord John Russell, a Whig minister, said long afterwards that it was the only period when he genuinely felt popular revolution threatened the country. The Duke of Wellington declared intractably in November 1830 that "The beginning of reform is the beginning of revolution." So it seemed that disaster must fall on the British Parliament, or the monarchy, or both.The question was: Could a rotten system reform itself in time? On June 7, 1832, the date of the extremely reluctant royal assent by William IV to the Great Reform Bill, it did. These events led to a total change in the way Britain was governed, and set the stage for its growth as the world's most successful industrial power; admired, among other things, for its traditions of good governance-a two-year revolution that Antonia Fraser brings to vivid dramatic life.
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