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American Jennie : The Remarkable Life of Lady Randolph Churchill
by Anne Sebba


Overview - Brooklyn-born Jennie Jerome married into the British aristocracy in 1874, after a three-day romance. She became Lady Randolph Churchill, wife of a maverick politician and mother of the most famous British statesman of the century. Jennie Churchill was not merely the most talked about and controversial American woman in London society, she was a dynamic behind-the-scenes political force and a woman of sexual fearlessness at a time when women were not supposed to be sexually liberated.  Read more...

 
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More About American Jennie by Anne Sebba
 
 
 
Overview
Brooklyn-born Jennie Jerome married into the British aristocracy in 1874, after a three-day romance. She became Lady Randolph Churchill, wife of a maverick politician and mother of the most famous British statesman of the century. Jennie Churchill was not merely the most talked about and controversial American woman in London society, she was a dynamic behind-the-scenes political force and a woman of sexual fearlessness at a time when women were not supposed to be sexually liberated. A concert pianist, magazine founder and editor, and playwright, she was also, above all, a devoted mother to Winston. In American Jennie, Anne Sebba draws on newly discovered personal correspondences and archives to examine the unusually powerful mutual infatuation between Jennie and her son and to relate the passionate and ultimately tragic career of the woman whom Winston described as having the wine of life in her veins. "

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780393057720
  • ISBN-10: 0393057720
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: November 2007
  • Page Count: 398
  • Dimensions: 9.44 x 6.38 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.77 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Biography & Autobiography > Historical - General
Books > Biography & Autobiography > Women
Books > Biography & Autobiography > Rich & Famous

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page 55.
  • Review Date: 2007-09-24
  • Reviewer: Staff

As Winston Churchill's mother and close adviser, Brooklyn-born Jennie Jerome (1854–1921) may have rated a chapter in the history books. But steeped in scandal, the passionate, ambitious and beautiful Gilded Age heiress has been fodder for several biographies of her own, including Ralph Martin's two-volume bestseller (1969–1971). The daughter of a maverick stock speculator, Jennie was probably pregnant with Winston when she married the duke of Marlborough's second son, Randolph. She was a tireless supporter of her husband's rising political career, and endured his sexual dalliances, mental unraveling (probably from syphilis) and eventual death. She earned a reputation as a journalist, dazzling socialite, shameless booster of Winston's political aspirations, and as a financially imprudent woman who indulged in a string of sexually charged affairs. Indeed, Jennie's younger son, Jack, may have been fathered by a handsome colonel and viscount, and her purported lovers may have included the prince of Wales. After Randolph's death, she remarried twice to men 20 years her junior, and died at 67 after a bad fall caused by her high heels. Sebba's (Mother Teresa) admiring biography is absorbing, authoritative and makes good use of family letters. 16 pages of photos. (Nov.)

 
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