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Description - The Woman of Substance by Piers Dudgeon

For the first time ever, a fascinating look at the remarkable life of Barbara Taylor Bradford. From the cobbled streets of Yorkshire to the sweeping avenues of Manhattan, Barbara's own story is as dramatic a tale as any one of her bestsellers. Barbara Taylor Bradford's rise to fame and fortune was a difficult one. But from an early age her mother marked her out for glory - at any cost. The drive and ambition instilled in Barbara were to reap huge rewards. From humble beginnings in Yorkshire she took London's Fleet Street by storm. And then, with the creation of Emma Harte, the unforgettable heroine of her first novel A Woman of Substance, she inspired women the world over - and became one of the world's bestselling authors. This is the first time that Barbara Taylor Bradford has been involved in a memoir of any kind and this unique collaboration has produced an extraordinary story. For Emma Harte's rise from Edwardian kitchen maid, single and pregnant, to one of the richest women in the world uncannily mirrors Barbara's own family history - something which was as much of a shock to Barbara as it will be to her millions of fans...An incredible story of suffering, loss and triumph over adversity, not to be missed.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780007165698
ISBN-10: 0007165692
Format: Paperback
(178mm x 111mm x 30mm)
Pages: 480
Imprint: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publish Date: 6-Mar-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions - The Woman of Substance by Piers Dudgeon

Book Reviews - The Woman of Substance by Piers Dudgeon

US Kirkus Review » Amid recent scholarly biographies of The Bard of Avon, we are now favored with the inside scoop on another pride of English letters, Barbara Taylor Bradford.She is not to be confused, despite their beloved little doggies, with the late Dame Barbara Cartland (or, despite the evident grandeur and charm as depicted by biographer Dudgeon, with Dame Edna). Bradford is the manufacturer of popular novels reaching, purportedly, 75 million copies sold, in 40 languages. Since her 1979 breakout book, A Woman of Substance, there have been scores more, plus a wave of TV spin-offs, and still, bless her, she soldiers on. The canon, as seen by Dudgeon, is not wholly fictional. He traces Barbara's history from her birth more than 70 years ago, in Armley, Yorkshire. He visits the settings of her stories, "up the ginnel towards the moor where she would often play," and bares the models for her engaging characters. Some speculative true-life parallels are drawn to her fiction with support from the novelist herself. He climbs her family tree and shakes loose, on her mother's side, some workhouse history and illegitimacy (involving, perhaps, a titled gentleman). Thus the "secret life" of the subtitle. He follows Cartland's rise from teenage cub reporter in Yorkshire through glamorous, bibulous Mayfair in the '60s as tasteful fashion editor. Then came marriage to movie producer Bob Bradford and residence in New York. The Emma Harte family saga and other books about substantial women followed, with Bob successfully building the brand and producing the films. Not omitting well-dressed movie stars, much heather, crisp napery, candlelight, crenellated castle keeps, strong heroines and pretty heroes, we are given pertinent extracts in extenso from the Bradford oeuvre.Aimed, of course, at fans, who will love it. To those unmoved by the Barbara Taylor Bradford mystique, all this will, naturally, be of supreme unimportance. (Kirkus Reviews)


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Author Biography - Piers Dudgeon

Piers Dudgeon is a writer, ediitor and photographer. He worked for ten years as a publisher in London before starting his own company and developing books with authors as diverse as John Fowles, Ted Hughes, Daphne du Maurier, Catherine Cookson, Peter Ackroyd and Susan Hill. In 1993, he moved from London to a village on the North Yorkshire moors. He has written ten works of non-fiction, including the no. 1 bestselling biography of Catherine Cookson, The Girl from Leam Lane, as well as feature articles for the Observer, the Daily Telegraph and the Mail on Sunday.

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