This week’s Book of the Week is Wendy Moore’s WEDLOCK: The True Story of the Disastrous Marriage and Remarkable Divorce of Mary Eleanor Bowes, Countess of Strathmore.
I have to concur with the praise it received in a recent UK review: “This splendid book, well researched and richly detailed, is as gripping as a novel.” Review in the Telegraph
Writing is a challenge, no doubt about it. But writing smart nonfiction and crafting it in ways that make it a page turner is incredibly difficult. WEDLOCK rises to the challenge marvelously. Wendy’s work does not disappoint.
On top of it, Mary Eleanor Bowes is such a fascinating character. She was a target for strong opinion during her day. In the illustration above, she is shown suckling kittens on the grounds that she was allegedly more fond of her cats than her sons. The cartoon was almost certainly commissioned by her estranged husband, Andrew Robinson Bowes. Now that’s a complicated marriage alright!
I also highly recommend Wendy’s first book: The Knife Man: Blood, Body Snatching, and the Birth of Modern Surgery.