Showing posts from February, 2012

The Anne Boleyn Files - The Anne Boleyn Collection

Almost two years ago, I had the privilege of being part of the first ever Anne Boleyn Experience , organized by Claire Ridgeway of The Anne Boleyn Files .  I was fortunate enough to get to know Claire and to share our mutual love of Anne Boleyn.  When Scandalous Women came out, Claire did me the honor of reviewing the book.  Now it's my turn to share with my readers that Claire has just published her first book, The Anne Boleyn Collection.  To celebrate she's put together a week-long virtual book tour, where all sorts of goodies are up for grabs, for next week.   Here’s the schedule:-   •5th March The Tudor Tutor – Claire will be answering questions and giving away a signed copy of “The Anne Boleyn Collection” and a Tudor themed prize over at Barb’s Tudor Tutor blog.  A winner will be selected at random from entrants.   •6th March Let Them Grumble – Guest article on Anne Boleyn for Libby over at her Let Them Grumble blog. Claire will also be offering a signed copy of her bo

Scandalous Women Reviews: Anne of Hollywood by Carole Wolper

Title:  Anne of Hollywood Author:  Carole Wolper Publisher: Gallery Books Publication date: 1/24/2012 Pages: 352 Overview: “I wasn’t prepared for the enemies. Had I been as gorgeous as a supermodel, or as rich as an heiress, or an actress with an Oscar to my credit, people would still not be happy that I had Henry’s attention, but they’d understand. What they resented was the king coupling with a ‘nobody. ’” Skirts may be shorter now, and messages sent by iPhone, but passion, intrigue, and a lust for power don’t change. National bestselling author Carol Wolper spins a mesmerizing tale of a twenty-first-century Anne Boleyn. Wily, intelligent, and seductive, with a dark beauty that stands out among the curvy California beach blondes, Anne attracts the attention of Henry Tudor, the handsome corporate mogul who reigns in Hollywood. Every starlet, socialite, and shark wants a piece of Henry, but he only wants Anne. The question is: can she keep him? Welcome to a privileged w

Scandalous Women Radio presents: Mary Seacole (1805 - 1881)

Tune in this Sunday, February 26th to Scandalous Women over at Blog Talk Radio where I will be talking about one of the most remarkable women of the Victorian Era:  Mary Seacole. The Times of London called her a heroine, Florence Nightingale called her a brothel-keeping quack, and Queen Victoria's newphew called her Mammy. But her name was Mary Seacole, one of the most eccentric and charismatic women of the Victorian era. Desperate to help out in the Crimean War, she was refused, but she traveled under her own steam, to help out. For more than a century after her death, the life of Mary Seacole was forgotten, but thanks to new research and biographies, her story has now been told. In 2004 Mary Seacole was voted top of a list of 100 of the greatest Black Britons and was again recognised by the public for her achievements during the Crimean War. Sources: Jane Robinson - Mary Seacole: The Charismatic Black Nurse Who Became A Heroine of The Crimea (2004) For more information:

Margaret Sanger - Saint or Sinner?

“No woman can call herself free who doesn’t own and control her own body” – Margaret Sanger. Almost 40 years after her death, Margaret Sanger (1879-1966) is still a subject of controversy in the United States. While some people see her as a savior, the woman who created the first women’s birth control clinic in the U.S., others see her as a racist, a promoter of promiscuity and a killer of unborn babies. Given the political climate in the U.S. where the far right seeks to dismantle her entire life’s work, I thought it was a good time to take a look back at her legacy. Type Margaret Sanger’s name into “Google” and you will find just as many web-sites that revile Sanger as you will those that admire her. The clinic that bears her name on the Lower East Side of Manhattan is picketed daily by anti-abortion activists who completely ignore the good that Planned Parenthood has done in its 80 years of existence, providing free and low-cost healthcare to women who either don’t have health in

Scandalous Women Presents: The Two Ellens

I had mentioned a few months ago the possiblity of a Scandalous Women podcast or radio show.  Well, on this Sunday, February 19th, will be the first episode of Scandalous Women on BlogTalk Radio. I and my special guest, author Leanna Renee Hieber, will be talking about The Two Ellens of Victorian Theatre, Ellen Terry, and Ellen Ternan. You tune in live to listen at 4:30 p.m. ET or catch up with the show later in the week. Ellen Terry was one of the most famous actresses in the 19th century; her partnership with Sir Henry Irving thrilled theatregoers for years.  Ellen Ternan , also an actress, was the mistress of author Charles Dickens. Since this February marks the 200th anniverary of Dickens's birth, it seemed fitting to discuss one of the more significant women in his life. About Leanna Renee Hieber : Author, actress and playwright Leanna Renee Hieber graduated with a BFA in Theatre, a focus in the Victorian Era and a scholarship to study in London. She adapted work

Movie Review: W/E

Directed by: Madonna Written by: Madonna & Alex Keshishian Produced by: Madonna, Kris Thykier, Colin Vatnes, Sara Zambreno, Scott Franklin & Harvey Weinstein Distributed by: The Weinstein Company/Studio Canal UK Starring: Wally Winthrop: Abby Cornish William Winthrop: Richard Coyle Wallis Warfield Simpson: Andrea Riseborough The Prince of Wales/Edward VIII – James D’Arcy Evgeny: Oscar Isaac The Duke of York/George V – Laurence Fox The Duchess of York – Natalie Dormer George V – James Fox Queen Mary – Judy Parfitt Plot: W.E. tells the story of two fragile but determined women, Wally Winthrop and Wallis Simpson, separated for more than six decades. In 1998, lonely New Yorker Winthrop is obsessed with what she perceives as the ultimate love story: King Edward VIII’s abdication of the British throne for the woman he loved, American divorcee Wallis Simpson. But Winthrop's research, including several visits to the Sotheby's auction of the Windsor Estate, reve

The Love Story that Changed History – Richard and Mildred Loving

“When any society says that I cannot marry a certain person, that society has cut off a segment off my freedom,” Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., 1958. "I am still not a political person, but I am proud that Richard's and my name is on a court case that can help reinforce the love, the commitment, the fairness, and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight seek in life. I support the freedom to marry for all. That's what Loving, and loving, are all about." Mildred's "Loving for All" statement, 6/12/07 - Source: It seems appropriate on Valentine’s Day to celebrate the life and marriage of Richard and Mildred Loving. The Lovings were two people who never set out to change the law, nor were they activists in any way. They were just two crazy kids in love who wanted to get married. “We both thought about other people,” Richard Loving said in an interview with LIFE magazine in 1966, “but we are not doin

Scandalous Women Celebrates Whitney Houston (1963-2012)

This weekend the world mourned the loss of singer Whitney Houston. I still have a hard time believing that she is gone, that her voice has been silenced. Just like I'll always remember where I was when I heard that John Lennon had been killed, I'll always remember where I was when I heard Whitney died. I was sitting at a bar hanging out with a friend, on Saturday night, when the bartender announced that Whitney Houston had died. WTH? How could that have happened? It didn't seem possible, I had just seen a clip on one of the infotainment shows that she had filmed a role in a remake of the 1970's classic SPARKLE, which she was also involved in producing. Although she'd been absent from the music business since her 2009 album wasn't as successful as her previous efforts, it seemed only a matter of time that she would be back in the studio again. After all, her ex Bobby Brown, had made a comeback of sorts on CMT of all places, and was now back touring with New

Scandalous Women Celebrates Black History Month

February is Black History Month and to celebrate, I thought I share links to all the posts here on Scandalous Women & around the blogosphere that have celebrated the achievements of Black Women over the centuries. Elizabeth Keckly  - Mary Todd Lincoln's dressmaker Lucy Parsons: An American Revolutionary Sally Hemings - Dusky Sally: The Controversy over Thomas Jefferson & Sally Hemings Marie Laveau: Voodoo Queen of New Orleans Josephine Baker Mary Ellen Pleasant Ida Wells-Barnett: Crusader for Justice Bessie Smith : Empress of the Blues Queen Ranavalona - The Mad Monarch of Madagascar

The Glamorous Garman Sisters

The Garman family "No other contemporary women had much poetry, good, bad and indifferent, written about them, or had so many portraits or busts made of them." - Roy Campbell It seems like the Garman sisters have been on the edge of my periphery for ages now. Just recently I read about them in article on Lucien Freud in the February issue of Vanity Fair .  Douglas Garman had a long affair with Peggy Guggenheim, who was the subject of an earlier blog post here at Scandalous Women . Pick up any biography of the Bloomsbury Group and you will see their names. Like the better-known Mitfords, the Garman sisters took center stage in Bohemian London during the first half of the twentieth century. Unconventionally beautiful, flamboyant, and headstrong, they broke away from middle-class conventions, seducing and inspiring a generation of artists. While all of the Garmans were artistic in their own right, it seems that their greatest gift to the world was to inspire other artists. Th

Happy Birthday Nell Gwyn!

Today is Nell Gwn's birthday, born February 2nd, 1650 which would make her 362 years old this year if she were a vampire. Nell has always been my favorite of Charles II's mistresses, probably because apart from his Queen, Catherine of Braganza and his sister Minette, I've always felt that Nell was the only one of his mistresses who truly loved him as Charles the man, not Charles the King. She seems to have been relatively undemanding compared to Barbara Palmer, and she wasn't a spy for the French like Louise de Keroualle. With her, the King could pretty much be himself. Called "pretty, witty Nell" by the diarist Samuel Pepys,  Nell has long been seen as a living embodiment of the spirit of Restoration England. She's become something of a folk heroine over the years, her story echoing the rags-to-royalty tale of Cinderella. Elizabeth Howe, in The First English Actresses , calls she was "the most famous Restoration actress of all time, possessed of a

Book of the Month - Sister Queens by Julia Fox

Title: Sister Queens: The Noble, Tragic Lives of Katherine of Aragon and Juana, Queen of Castile Author: Julia Fox Publisher: Random House Publishing Group Publication date: 1/31/2012 Pages: 480 From the back cover: The history books have cast Katherine of Aragon, the first queen of King Henry VIII of England, as the ultimate symbol of the Betrayed Woman, cruelly tossed aside in favor of her husband’s seductive mistress, Anne Boleyn. Katherine’s sister, Juana of Castile, wife of Philip of Burgundy and mother of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, is portrayed as “Juana the Mad,” whose erratic behavior included keeping her beloved late husband’s coffin beside her for years. But historian Julia Fox, whose previous work painted an unprecedented portrait of Jane Boleyn, Anne’s sister, offers deeper insight in this first dual biography of Katherine and Juana, the daughters of Spain’s Ferdinand and Isabella, whose family ties remained strong despite their separation. Looking throu