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    Priscilla: The Hidden Life of an Englishwoman in Wartime France (Harvill Secker) (Paperback) By (author) Nicholas Shakespeare

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    DescriptionThis is the astonishing true story of a young woman's adventures, and misadventures, in the dangerous world of Nazi-occupied France. "A most strange and compelling book driven by the writer's unsparing search for truth: now an optimistic hunt for a family heroine, now a study in female wiles of survival, now a portrait of one very ordinary person's frailty in the face of terrible odds". (John le Carre). When Nicholas Shakespeare stumbled across a box documents belonging to his late aunt he was completely unaware of where this discovery would take him. The Priscilla he remembered was very different from the glamorous, morally ambiguous young woman who emerged from the many love letters and journals, surrounded by suitors and living the dangerous existence of a British woman in a country controlled by the enemy. He had heard rumours that Priscilla had fought in the Resistance, but the truth turned out to be far more complicated. As he investigated his aunt's life, dark secrets emerged. Nicholas discovered the answer to the questions he'd been puzzling over: What caused the breakdown of Priscilla's marriage to a French aristocrat? Why had she been interned in a prisoner-of-war camp and how had she escaped? And who was the 'Otto' she was having a relationship with as Paris was liberated? Priscilla's story show us the precariousness of life in occupied France, when loyalties were compromised and life could change in an instant. It gives us an intimate insight into women's lives in times of conflict and asks us to consider what we might do to survive in similar circumstances.


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  • Full bibliographic data for Priscilla

    Title
    Priscilla
    Subtitle
    The Hidden Life of an Englishwoman in Wartime France
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Nicholas Shakespeare
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 448
    Width: 152 mm
    Height: 232 mm
    Thickness: 38 mm
    Weight: 660 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9781846554841
    ISBN 10: 1846554845
    Classifications

    BIC E4L: BIO
    BIC subject category V2: BGH
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T4.2
    BIC subject category V2: HBWQ
    BIC time period qualifier V2: 3JJH
    BIC geographical qualifier V2: 1DDF
    BIC subject category V2: BGHA, WQY, HBTZ1
    Libri: ENGM1075
    BISAC V2.8: BIO022000
    Libri: ENGM2000
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15570
    BISAC V2.8: HIS027100
    Libri: WELT3015
    BISAC V2.8: HIS037070, HIS043000, BIO008000, REF013000
    DC23: 940.53092
    Thema V1.0: NHTZ1, NHWR7, DNBH, NHWL, WQY
    Thema geographical qualifier V1.0: 1D
    Thema time period qualifier V1.0: 3MPBL
    Thema geographical qualifier V1.0: 1DDF
    Publisher
    VINTAGE
    Imprint name
    HARVILL SECKER
    Publication date
    07 November 2013
    Publication City/Country
    London
    Author Information
    Nicholas Shakespeare was born in Worcester in 1957 and grew up in the Far East and Latin America. He is a prize-winning novelist and biographer and Priscilla draws on his talents in both genres.
    Review quote
    "This mysterious story of the Occupation in France has all the qualities of a fascinating novel, with exquisite social, sexual and moral nuance" -- Antony Beevor "Nicholas Shakespeare has employed all his superb gifts as a writer to tell the picaresque tale of his aunt in wartime occupied France. Priscilla is a femme fatale worthy of fiction, and the author traces her tangled, troubled, romantic and often tragically unromantic experiences through one of the most dreadful periods of 20th-century history" -- Max Hastings "Priscilla's descent into hell runs eerily parallel to that of France itself; Faustian, fascinating and in the end extremely sad" -- Sebastian Faulks "A gripping excavation of a woman's secret past, Priscilla is also a fascinating portrait of France during the Second World War, and of the many shadowy and corrupt deals made by the French with their Nazi occupiers" -- Caroline Moorehead "In Priscilla, Nicholas Shakespeare captures the soul of a young Englishwoman who, to survive in Nazi-occupied France, is forced to make choices which few in England ever had to face. She remained her own unflinching judge and jury to the end" -- Charlotte Rampling