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American Duchess: A Novel of Consuelo Vanderbilt
by Karen Harper

Published: 2019-02-26
Paperback : 368 pages
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Recommended to book clubs by 2 of 2 members

Before there was Meghan Markle, there was Consuelo Vanderbilt, the original American Duchess.  Perfect for readers of Jennifer Robson and lovers of Downton Abbey.

Karen Harper tells the tale of Consuelo Vanderbilt, her “The Wedding of the Century” to the Duke of Marlborough, and her ...

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Introduction

Before there was Meghan Markle, there was Consuelo Vanderbilt, the original American Duchess.  Perfect for readers of Jennifer Robson and lovers of Downton Abbey.

Karen Harper tells the tale of Consuelo Vanderbilt, her “The Wedding of the Century” to the Duke of Marlborough, and her quest to find meaning behind “the glitter and the gold.”

On a cold November day in 1895, a carriage approaches St Thomas Episcopal Church on New York City’s Fifth Avenue. Massive crowds surge forward, awaiting their glimpse of heiress Consuelo Vanderbilt. Just 18, the beautiful bride has not only arrived late, but in tears, yet her marriage to the aloof Duke of Marlborough proceeds. Bullied into the wedding by her indomitable mother, Alva, Consuelo loves another. But a deal was made, trading some of the vast Vanderbilt wealth for a title and prestige, and Consuelo, bred to obey, realizes she must make the best of things.

At Blenheim Palace, Consuelo is confronted with an overwhelming list of duties, including producing an “heir and a spare,” but her relationship with the duke quickly disintegrates. Consuelo finds an inner strength, charming everyone from debutantes to diplomats including Winston Churchill, as she fights for women’s suffrage. And when she takes a scandalous leap, can she hope to attain love at last…?

From the dawning of the opulent Gilded Age, to the battles of the Second World War, American Duchess is a riveting tale of one woman’s quest to attain independence—at any price.

 

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by Christie Lambert (see profile) 05/01/20

 
  "american duchess"by Carolynr (see profile) 07/02/19

if you like historical fiction you will like this book. Of course hard to tell how much is truth, its based on history and is a very likable story.

 
  "The book feels like a romance novel for the young adult."by thewanderingjew (see profile) 02/08/19

American Duchess, A Novel of Consuelo Vanderbilt, by Karen harper
After reading Therese Fowler’s “A Well-Behaved Woman”, about Alma Vanderbilt, Consuelo’s overbearing mother, I eage
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