Life Mask

Donoghue, Emma

Published by Harcourt, 2005
ISBN 10: 0156032643 / ISBN 13: 9780156032643
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0156032643 Brand new. Any book may show light shelf wear from warehouse storage and handling. Bookseller Inventory # 16620

About this title:

Synopsis: The bestselling author of Slammerkin vividly brings to life the Beau Monde of late eighteenth-century England, turning the private drama of three celebrated Londoners into a robust, full-bodied portrait of a world on the brink of revolution. In a time of looming war, of glittering spectacle and financial disasters, the wealthy liberals of the Whig Party work to topple a tyrannical prime minister and a lunatic king. Marriages and friendships stretch or break; political liaisons prove as dangerous as erotic ones; and everyone wears a mask. Will Eliza Farren, England's leading comedic actress, gain entry to that elite circle that calls itself the World? Can Lord Derby, the inventor of the horse race that bears his name, endure public mockery of his long, unconsummated courtship of the actress? Will Anne Damer, a sculptor and rumored Sapphist, be the cause of Eliza's fall from grace?

This is a remakable novel in the tradition of the very best historical fiction.

Review: One of the satisfactions of Emma Donoghue's masterful fourth novel, Life Mask, is the tension between the writer's contemporary interests, like lesbianism and the balance of power in marriage, and her 18th Century subject matter. Life Mask is a fictional recreation of a plausible (but unproven) love triangle between the comedic actress Eliza Farren, the sculptor Anne Damer (the niece of Horace Walpole, a fantastic minor character here), and Edward Smith-Stanley, the twelfth Earl of Derby, a Whig (liberal) politician who left his name to the horse race he founded. Like her bestseller Slammerkin, the novel spins an intricate story from the slightest of historical traces, in this case a single reference in the commonplace book of Hester (Thrale) Piozzi: a snarky four-line epigram that hints at the danger to Miss Farren's reputation in consorting with "one whose name approaches 'Damn Her.'"

Readers who stay with Donoghue through the crowded and confusing early chapters of Life Mask will find a skillful, partly sympathetic portrait of English aristocracy during and after the French Revolution, a trove of period detail, and a spellbinding tale of unlikely but enduring love. --Regina Marler

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Life Mask
Publisher: Harcourt
Publication Date: 2005
Binding: PAPERBACK
Book Condition: New

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Book Description Harvest Books, 2004. Condition: Fair. Reprint. Shows definite wear, and perhaps considerable marking on inside. Seller Inventory # GRP11517369

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Book Description Harvest Books, 2004. Condition: Very Good. Reprint. Ships from Reno, NV. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Seller Inventory # GRP95096375

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Book Description Harvest Books, 2004. Condition: Good. Reprint. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Seller Inventory # GRP3301489

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Professor Emma Donoghue
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Book Description Mariner Books 10/09/2005, 2005. Paperback. Condition: Very Good. Shipped within 24 hours from our UK warehouse. Clean, undamaged book with no damage to pages and minimal wear to the cover. Spine still tight, in very good condition. Remember if you are not happy, you are covered by our 100% money back guarantee. Seller Inventory # 6545-9780156032643

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