The Smart

The Smart : The True Story of Margaret Caroline Rudd and the Unfortunate Perreau Brothers

3.54 (24 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Hardback
By (author) 

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Britain was on the verge of war with America, yet foreign affairs were far from the thoughts of Londoners, spellbound by the proceedings of two spectacular trials, one involving a strange pair of twins, and the other an elegant young woman. Caroline Rudd had left Ireland for London where she came to enjoy a glamorous life as a high-class prostitute. Her mesmerizing charisma attracted the identical but opposite Perreau twins one a sober merchant, the other a raffish gambler. Caroline and the twins forged bonds and lived in luxury until everything collapsed like a house of cards and charges of forgery were laid. Meticulously researched, this evocative history brilliantly bridges the gap between aristocracy and underworld, as eighteenth-century society is drawn into the most scandalous financial smart of the age."
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Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 156 x 234mm | 578g
  • Vintage Publishing
  • London, United Kingdom
  • facsimiles, portraits
  • 070117109X
  • 9780701171094

Review quote

A fascinating story in the shady life and scandalous times of Caroline Rudd... gripping reading. "Daily Telegraph" Sarah Bakewell has written a scholarly biography that reads like a detective novel with a historical setting... full of sharp pen-portraits, lively asides and quirky details... every bit as colourful and enjoyable as the title suggests. "Independent" "From the Trade Paperback edition.""
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About Sarah Bakewell

Sarah Bakewell is a Curator at the Wellcome Library, London, where she stumbled across this fascinating story. This is her first book.
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Rating details

24 ratings
3.54 out of 5 stars
5 17% (4)
4 42% (10)
3 25% (6)
2 12% (3)
1 4% (1)
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