Om Natalie and Romaine
Natalie Barney,'the wild girl of Cincinnati', and Romaine Brooks were both rich, American and grandly lesbian. They met in Paris in 1915 and their tempestuous affair lasted more than fifty years. By the end of their lives together, Natalie and Romaine had entertained, slept with, fallen in love with, tutored or tortured a range of figures including Gertrude Stein, Colette, Edith Sitwell, Gabriele d'Annunzio and the ballerina Ida Rubinstein. But among this tumult there was an enduring and loving relationship that supported a liberating spirit of culture, style and candour. In this vivid double biography, Souhami writes with complexity and skill, drawing the reader into a different world and capturing for ever her subjects' extraordinary lives.'A wonderful evocation of an era and of a relationship frightening in both its intensity and its bleakness' Guardian. 'Souhami is an exceptionally witty and original biographer' Sunday Times. 'Pages are crammed with descriptions of exotic characters, their extravagances and eccentricities, the lilies, the pearls, the velvet-lined rooms...' Selina Hastings, Sunday Telegraph.