Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Teaser Tuesday, June 12

Teaser Tuesday is actually one of my favorite memes because I love sharing tidbits of what I'm reading and indulging in snippets from others. So I'm thrilled that this week I can actually share some teasers!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

- Grab your current read & open to a random page
- Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page (be careful not to include spoilers!)
- Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers

As always, I'm breaking the rules: I'm sharing more than two teaser sentences and I'm sharing from two different, not-even-connected-by-historical-era books! (Look at me, I'm a rebel!)

The first book is Love, Fiercely: A Gilded Age Romance by Jean Zimmerman. (Zimmerman also has The Orphanmaster out now, too -- she's one prolific author!)  While the title and cover might suggest a historical romance, this is actually a biography of a Gilded Age power couple, Edith Minturn and Newton Phelps Stokes. Brilliant, rich, attractive, passionate, and progressive, Minturn and Stokes had an inspired marriage that really reads like fiction. Zimmerman's writing style is easy, precise, and clear, and I'm racing through this one. The cover image is of Minturn and Stokes, a portrait by Sargent, and was rather shocking at the time, and Zimmerman spends time talking about how Sargent painted them, why the image was so controversial, and the implications of the portrait to Minturn and Stokes.
Newton did his best to remain unobtrusive. He brought a book. He didn't really need to be there. But because they were newly married, he wanted to be everywhere she was. Now and again he glanced up from his reading to admire the pearly vision of his wife, elevated on the posing platform as on a stage, her swan's throat, her red, set mouth, the brunette wings of her hair that swept back from the straight white part. Looking up at his wife on Sargent's stage, even as she arrayed herself in a décolleté and demurely tapped her fan, the husband could see the steel that lay just under the surface. Edith even posed fiercely. (p127)

The other book is Abdication: A Novel by Juliet Nicolson. While the title and premise hints that the focus will be on the abdication of the throne by King Edward (thanks to his love affair with Mrs. Wallis Simpson), the story really follows fictional figures in the King's and Mrs. Simpson's circle: Evangeline Nettlefold, childhood friend of Mrs. Simpson and her chauffeur, May Thomas (among others). Class, the coming of World War II, the intersection of love and politics are all touched upon and I'm just racing through this one.
"I do declare you are a girl!" Miss Nettlefold had finally concluded aloud, in a rich and lilting accent that was unequivocally American. "Tell me I'm right," she said, already chuckling deeply at the accuracy of her deduction. "My, oh my, you certainly have some pluck in choosing this profession at such a young age! And what with you being so pretty in such a male line of work!" she continued. "Tell me, how did this all come about?" (p16)

1 comment:

  1. Interesting pull from Abdication! I'm really looking forward to reading that one. Hope I can move it to the top o' the stacks soon.

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