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Gentry by Adam Nicolson

Title Gentry
Author Adam Nicolson
Publisher HarperCollins Publishers
Release 2012
Category England
Total Pages 460
ISBN 9780007335503
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Adam Nicolson tells the story of England through the history of fourteen gentry families - from the 15th century to the present day. This sparkling work of history reads like a real-life Downton Abbey, as the loves, hatreds and many times of grief of his chosen cast illuminate the grand events of history. We may well be 'a nation of shopkeepers', but for generations England was a country dominated by its middling families, rooted on their land, in their locality, with a healthy interest in turning a profit from their property and a deep distrust of the centralised state. The virtues we may all believe to be part of the English culture - honesty, affability, courtesy, liberality - each of these has their source in gentry life cultivated over five hundred years. These folk were the backbone of England. Adam Nicolson's riveting new book concentrates on fourteen families, from 1400 to the present day. From the medieval gung-ho of the Plumpton family to the high-seas adventures of the Lascelles in the eighteenth century, to more modern examples, the book provides a chronological picture of the English, seen through these intimate, passionate, powerful stories of family saga. Drawing on a wealth of unpublished archive material, here is a vivid depiction of the life and code of the gentry. 'The Gentry' is first and foremost a wonderful sweep of English history, shedding light on the creation of the distinctive English character but with the sheer readability of an epic novel.

Title Bobbie Gentry s Ode to Billie Joe
Author Tara Murtha
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing USA
Release 2014-12-18
Category Music
Total Pages 160
ISBN 162356221X
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

July, 1967: It seems the entire country stopped to listen to a husky voice steeped in the simmering secrets of the South tell a tragic tale of teenage suicide. So much for the Summer of Love. “Ode to Billie Joe” knocked the Beatles' “All You Need is Love” off the top of the charts, and Bobbie Gentry became an international star. Almost 50 years later, Gentry is as enigmatic and captivating as her signature song. Of course, fans still want to know why Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge. They also wonder: Why did Bobbie Gentry, who has not performed or made a public appearance since the early 1980s, leave it all behind? Through extensive interviews and unprecedented access to career memorabilia, Murtha explores the real-life mysteries ensnarled within the much-disputed origin of Ode to Billie Joe. The result is an investigative pop history that reveals, for the first time, the full breadth of Bobbie Gentry's groundbreaking career-and just may help explain her long silence. Foreword by musician Jill Sobule.

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