A while back I told you to keep your eye on this biography about Idina Sackville. I was unable to post the review until now, but this is a book to grab on to. It has been getting great reviews elsewhere as well. Don't miss this one if you like to read about a somewhat eccentric and unusual personality. This is certainly not a dull read. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Frances Osborne, Knopf, June 2, 2009, $30.00/$35.00C,HC, 320 pp, 978-0307270146.
Frances Osborne, the great granddaughter of Idina Sackville has written a shockingly candid biography of a brazen woman who defied the convention of upper society’s expectations. She glowed in the scandalous acts of the choices she made, but always yearned for love. She was born in 1933, the Jazz Age. She married Euan Wallace, the first of five husbands and they set sail to Kenya to build a home. She was surrounded by majestic breathtaking vistas and she fell in love. After having two sons, the marriage began to disintegrate, a divorce was inevitable. When she lost custody and visitation from her boys, she was devastated. She returned alone to her idyllic hideaway of hedonism with only short respites back to England. Idina’s world was wrapped in a cocoon of pleasure with a sharp edge of danger looming about. Her friends, The Happy Valley Set, knew Idina for her outrageous behavior, including frequent nude appearances, adultery and couple switching and the endless flow of alcohol. The Bolter is absorbing with Idina’s life bare and detailed. Her quest for love and freedom was paramount to her. Osborne succeeds brilliantly in conveying a sense of compassion not condemnation for this petite powerhouse.