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ebook / ISBN-13: 9781529366747

Price: £25

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Captivating, intimate, dazzling epic and revelatory’ SIMON SEBAG-MONTEFIORE

The story of the family who rose from the Frankfurt ghetto to become synonymous with wealth and power has been much mythologized. Yet half the Rothschilds, the women, remain virtually unknown.

From the East End of London to the Eastern seaboard of the United States, from Spitalfields to Scottish castles, from Bletchley Park to Buchenwald, and from the Vatican to Palestine, Natalie Livingstone follows the extraordinary lives of the English branch of the Rothschild women from the dawn of the nineteenth century to the early years of the twenty first.

As Jews in a Christian society and women in a deeply patriarchal family, they were outsiders. Determined to challenge and subvert expectations, they supported each other, building on the legacies of their mothers and aunts. They became influential hostesses and talented diplomats, choreographing electoral campaigns, advising prime ministers, advocating for social reform and trading on the stock exchange. Misfits and conformists, conservatives and idealists, performers and introverts, they mixed with Rossini and Mendelssohn, Disraeli, Gladstone and Chaim Weizmann, amphetamine-dealers, temperance campaigners, Queen Victoria, and Albert Einstein. They broke code, played a pioneering role in the environmental movement, scandalised the world of women’s tennis by introducing the overarm serve and drag-raced with Miles Davies in Manhattan.

Absorbing and compulsive THE WOMEN OF ROTHSCHILD gives voice to the complicated, privileged and gifted women whose vision and tenacity shaped history.

Reviews

For far too long, the significant contribution made by Rothschild women to our family's extraordinary history and success has gone largely unacknowledged. In this gripping biography, Natalie Livingstone shows that Rothschild women were the velvet gloves guiding the iron fists of their male relatives and far from being mere appendages, they acted as trusted confidants and silent partners
HANNAH ROTHSCHILD, author of The Improbability of Love, shortlisted for the Bailey's Women's Prize
This brilliantly researched and scintillatingly written book is proof positive that the female of the Rothschild species were even more fascinating and talented than the males. Indomitable matriarchs, ground-breaking scientists, political activists, witty and gorgeous socialites, tasteful philanthropists, hardened survivors: these pages are populated by outsized personalities who will live with you long after you have read the final page
ANDREW ROBERTS, author of Churchill: Walking with Destiny
Captivating, intimate, dazzling epic and revelatory, this is a brilliant history of the most fascinating and influential dynasty suffused with politics and splendour that brings to life not only the Rothschild women but also power and society across three centuries
SIMON SEBAG MONTEFIORE
Livingstone marshals a huge cast of characters, spanning two centuries and moving with ease from the Jewish ghetto to the grandest houses in England. She describes the Rothschild women as an 'overlooked source of power, strength and imagination', and in this absorbing book she has brought them out of the shadows
Daily Mail
Livingstone blows life into even the most casual textual references to [the women] to reveal fully formed women . . . a stylish and captivating tour through the three-century long history of one of Europe's most intriguing and sprawling family trees
Reaction
Pacey, accessible and engrossing . . . Livingstone's entertaining and richly detailed book reveals a cast of extraordinary women who defied the rules and shaped society across three centuries
Waterstones
In this scintillating family saga, Natalie Livingstone reveals that the Rothschild ladies were, if anything, even more extraordinary than their fathers, brothers and husbands . . .with consummate skill, Livingstone weaves together...the dark as well as the light, and the result is both thrilling and moving
KATHRYN HUGHES, Mail on Sunday
Hugely entertaining...a fascinating story, stylishly told
Sunday Times
Brilliantly conceived and beautifully written, The Women of Rothschild . . . represents a significant contribution to our understanding of the Jewish past
TLS