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Divine Lola: A True Story of Scandal and Celebrity Kindle Edition
An enthralling biography about one of the most intriguing women of the Victorian age: the first self-invented international social celebrity.
Lola Montez was one of the most celebrated and notorious women of the nineteenth century. A raven-haired Andalusian who performed her scandalous “Spider Dance” in the greatest performance halls across Europe, she dazzled and beguiled all who met her with her astonishing beauty, sexuality, and shocking disregard for propriety. But Lola was an impostor, a self-invention. Born Eliza Gilbert, the beautiful Irish wild child escaped a stifling marriage and reimagined herself as Lola the Sevillian flamenco dancer and noblewoman, choosing a life of adventure, fame, sex, and scandal rather than submitting to the strictures of her era.
Lola cast her spell on the European aristocracy and the most famous intellectuals and artists of the time, including Alexandre Dumas, Franz Liszt, and George Sand, and became the obsession of King Ludwig I of Bavaria. She then set out for the New World, arriving in San Francisco at the height of the gold rush, where she lived like a pioneer and performed for rowdy miners before making her way to New York. There, her inevitable downfall was every bit as dramatic as her rise. Yet there was one final reinvention to come for the most defiant woman of the Victorian age—a woman known as a “savage beauty” who was idolized, romanticized, vilified, truly known by no one, and a century ahead of her time.
From the Publisher
Cristina Morató has made a career of writing about astonishing, intrepid women who have been lost to history, and her biography of Lola Montez reads like a gripping novel. I find Lola especially interesting and relevant today, in the context of our age’s fascination with social media and self-branding, since she can be thought of as the first completely self-invented celebrity. She passed herself off as a Spanish aristocrat even though she was actually born a middle-class Irishwoman (and could barely speak Spanish). And despite not really knowing how to dance, she managed to reach the pinnacle of fame as a dancer, hobnobbing with the most famous politicians, writers, musicians, and aristocrats of the time. Taking charge of her sexuality on her own terms, she was a feminist—and shocked the public with her sexy “Spider Dance” over a century before Madonna shocked the public with her own bold sexuality. Lola died before her fortieth birthday and was buried in Brooklyn, New York, where she still receives visitors to her grave. A rebel to the last, this fascinating, singular woman still casts an irresistible spell.
—Liza Darnton, Editor
About the Author
Born in Barcelona in 1961, Cristina Morató is a journalist, reporter, and author dedicated to writing about the lives of great women innovators and explorers that history has overlooked. Her research, tracing the footsteps of these remarkable women, has led her to travel to more than forty countries and has resulted in eight biographies: Viajeras intrépidas y aventureras (Intrepid and Adventurous Women Travelers); Las Reinas de África (African Queens); Las Damas de Oriente (Ladies of the East); Cautiva en Arabia (Arabian Captive); Divas rebeldes (Rebel Divas); Reinas malditas (Tragic Queens); Diosas de Hollywood (Hollywood Goddesses); and Divina Lola (Divine Lola), Cristina’s first to be translated into English. She is a founding member and the current vice president of the Spanish Geographical Society and belongs to the Royal Geographic Society of London. For more information visit www.cristinamorato.com/home-2.
Andrea Rosenberg is a translator from Spanish and Portuguese. Her full-length translations include novels, graphic narratives, and nonfiction, including works by Manuel Vilas, Tomás González, Inês Pedrosa, Aura Xilonen, Juan Gómez Bárcena, Paco Roca, and Marcelo D’Salete. Two of her translations have won Eisner Awards, and she has been the recipient of awards and grants from the Fulbright Program, the American Literary Translators Association, and the Banff International Literary Translation Centre.
- ASIN : B08P4PKNSR
- Publisher : Amazon Crossing (1 September 2021)
- Language : English
- File size : 27840 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 432 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 1542025095
- Best Sellers Rank: 12,663 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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It is well research, however, the fake and continues dialogues put me off constantly, hence my three star rating. They are fake, forced and they didn't light the reading as the are intent to, just the opposite. I would have rather have the real letters in the book when chronologically were mentioned, as a real voice of the true historical characters. Or more articles from the newspapers.
Overall is a good biography of the historical events. And portrayed an interesting character, with a lot of shadows and a few lights. Lola had a Narcissistic personality disorder as I ever encounter one (which I have), and is obvious each time her real words or personality were revealed through the book. Still, a very interesting character, not well known to the public.