Thursday, January 28, 2016
Some of the choices for inclusion were obvious: Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II; Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard; Lord Byron and Caroline Lamb; Edith Wharton and Morton Fullerton; Elizabeth Taylor and Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds. But others I’d never heard of: Anna Ivanona; Timothy Dexter; Oskar Kokoschka and Alma Mahler; and more. The stories range from horrifying (Nero) or horrible (Norman Mailer) to sad (Oscar Wilde) to bizarre (Oskar Kokoschka). Wright’s enthusiasm for the subject, her upbeat insights, and her amusing asides make this fast-moving book about failed love thoroughly enjoyable.