Wait For Me! : Memoirs of the Youngest Mitford Sister
Deborah Devonshire is a natural writer with a knack for the telling phrase and for hitting the nail on the head. She tells the story of her upbringing, lovingly and wittily describing her parents (so memorably fictionalised by her sister Nancy); she talks candidly about her brother and sisters, and their politics (while not being at all political herself), finally setting the record straight. Throughout the book she writes brilliantly about the country and her deep attachment to it and those who live and work in it. As Duchess of Devonshire, Debo played an active role in restoring and overseeing the day-to-day running of the family houses and gardens, and in developing commercial enterprises at Chatsworth. She tells poignantly of the deaths of three of her children, as well as her husband's battle with alcohol addiction.Wait For Me is enthralling and a total joy, full of the author's sympathetic wit (which she is not afraid to use on herself).
- Hardback | 384 pages
- 156 x 234 x 38mm | 721.21g
- 09 Sep 2010
- Hodder & Stoughton General Division
- John Murray Publishers Ltd
- London, United Kingdom
- 4 x 8pp b/w
Fascinating * Independent on Sunday * 'Admirably done, cannily blending disclosure and reticence in a charming book that kept me riveted, both by what is said . . . and what remains firmly under wraps' * Miranda Seymour, Daily Telegraph * 'Rich, lyrical and cheeful' * Country Life * 'Enchanting. Dip in and be beguiled' * Tatler, December * 'Evocative, funny, nostalgic' * Juliet Nicolson, Evening Standard Christmas books * 'Deborah Devonshire has had an astonishing life and her memoirs are peopled by a cast of characters that includes Winston Churchill, the Queen, John F. Kennedy, Lucian Freud and Elivs Presley . . . She's also unusually frank about her late husband's alcoholism. Yet while there's a lot of sadness in this book, there's no self-pity. Instead, you get the impressions that, at 90, Deborah Devonshire's zest for life, gossip and mischief is as strong as ever' * John Preston, Daily Mail Christmas books special * 'Talk about a life lived in full . . . Her memoirs, Wait for Me! are as fascinating and entertaining a portrait of the last century as you could hope to read' * Sandra Parsons, Daily Mail Christmas books special * '[Debo] is a glorious testament to the fact that we should never retire early in case our brains atrophy. It's stuffed full of wonderful people, and Debo has a great ear for the killer, defining quote . . . Just reading this book made me hare off to visit Chatsworth . . . The best books make you see the world differently and maybe want to change yours. We will not see her like again' * Liz Jones, Daily Mail Christmas books special * 'I cried several times during Deborah Devonshire's memoir . . . the calibre of events, cast and author could hardly be higher and Debo has potted an extraordinary life (though ordinary to her) with kindness and humour' * Rachel Johnson, Observer Christmas special * 'Admirably done, cannily blending disclosure and reticence in a charming book that kept me riveted, both by what is said . . . and what remains firmly under wraps' * Daily Telegraph Biographies of the Year * 'The one book this year that everyone will want in their Christmas stocking' * A. N. Wilson, Spectator * 'An entertaining, lively portrait' * Scotsman * 'She [Debo] is in possession of what I can only describe as a uniquely Mitford-esque sensibility; loving but unsentimental; devoid of self-pity; unwilling to bore others with her own travails; able to find the ridiculous in almost anything . . . these qualities - disarmingly rare in Oprahworld - are , to me, indisputably admirable' * Observer * 'Funny and sad, the irresistible combination that is one of the secrets of charm' * Daily Telegraph * 'Wait For Me! proves irresistible, even for die-hard Mitphobes like me' * Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday * 'The Duchess is an exhilarating writer, with a great gift for storytelling, and a prose style of elegant simplicity' * Jane Shilling, Evening Standard * 'I was captivated . . . unputdownable' * Bel Mooney, Daily Mail * 'A touching, funny memorial to a vanished age' * Stephen Moss, Guardian *
About Deborah Devonshire
The Dowager Duchess of Devonshire was brought up in Oxfordshire. In 1950 her husband Andrew, the 11th Duke of Devonshire, inherited estates in Yorkshire and Ireland as well as Chatsworth, the family seat in Derbyshire, and Deborah became chatelaine and housekeeper of one of England's greatest and best-loved houses. Following her husband's death in 2004, she moved to a village on the Chatsworth estate. She died in 2014.