Queen Victoria's Mysterious Daughter by Lucinda Hawksley
A Biography of Princess Louise

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Hawksley conveys Louise’s story fully and clearly, but just as importantly, she shows the devastating damage Queen Victoria inflicted on her extensive family.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

The secrets of Queen Victoria's sixth child, Princess Louise, may be destined to remain hidden forever. What was so dangerous about this artistic, tempestuous royal that her life has been documented more by rumor and gossip than hard facts? When Lucinda Hawksley started to investigate, often thwarted by inexplicable secrecy, she discovered a fascinating woman, modern before her time, whose story has been shielded for years from public view.

Louise was a sculptor and painter, friend to the Pre-Raphaelites and a keen member of the Aesthetic movement. The most feisty of the Victorian princesses, she kicked against her mother's controlling nature and remained fiercely loyal to her brothers-especially the sickly Leopold and the much-maligned Bertie. She sought out other unconventional women, including Josephine Butler and George Eliot, and campaigned for education and health reform and for the rights of women. She battled with her indomitable mother for permission to practice the "masculine" art of sculpture and go to art college-and in doing so became the first British princess to attend a public school.

The rumors of Louise's colorful love life persist even today, with hints of love affairs dating as far back as her teenage years, and notable scandals included entanglements with her sculpting tutor Joseph Edgar Boehm and possibly even her sister Princess Beatrice's handsome husband, Liko. True to rebellious form, she refused all royal suitors and became the first member of the royal family, since the sixteenth century, to marry a commoner. She moved with him to Canada when he was appointed Governor-General.

Spirited and lively, Queen Victoria's Mysterious Daughter is richly packed with arguments, intrigues, scandals, and secrets, and is a vivid portrait of a princess desperate to escape her inheritance.

 

About Lucinda Hawksley

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LUCINDA HAWKSLEY: An M.A. in Literature and the Visual Arts 1840-1940 and has written or co-written twelve books. She lives in England and is the great-great-great granddaughter of Charles Dickens.
 
Published December 8, 2015 by Thomas Dunne Books. 385 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Travel. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Queen Victoria's Mysterious Daughter
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Kirkus

Good
on Sep 01 2015

Hawksley conveys Louise’s story fully and clearly, but just as importantly, she shows the devastating damage Queen Victoria inflicted on her extensive family.

Read Full Review of Queen Victoria's Mysterious D... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Washington Times

Above average
Reviewed by Muriel Dobbin on Jan 14 2016

...according to her biographer, to this day, information about her life — and loves — remains locked away in the archives.

Read Full Review of Queen Victoria's Mysterious D... | See more reviews from Washington Times

Reader Rating for Queen Victoria's Mysterious Daughter
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