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"Flappers is all good, dirty fun . . . Mackrell is an engaging storyteller with a deceptively light touch . . ."
--Cressida Connolly, Sunday Telegraph
". . . scintillating biography . . . Mackrell is clever at painting the subtly complex picture of these women's lives from giddy high spirits to steadfast obstinacy, from emotional fragility to creative focus and weaving them together against a backdrop that is also writ clear. This enthralling, elegant book conjures up all the glamour and razzmatazz but never flinches from the caverns of pain beneath."
--Caroline Jowett, Daily Express
"It's in the bringing together of these highly diverse women under the 'flapper' umbrella that Mackrell's real genius lies, showing us the relationship between an age and the very different individuals who shone during it."
--Lesley McDowell, The Independent on Sunday
"Mackrell interweaves these intense lives with rich detail of their wider worlds . . . she writes beautifully, peppering her prose with their sly one-liners and her own insights, while maintaining a pace as swift as the exhausting lives she describes . . ."
--Kate Colquhoun, Sunday Express
"Judith Mackrell's group biography of six women of the Roaring Twenties is a terrific read."
--Amanda Foreman, Mail on Sunday
". . .erudite and detailed"
--Nicky Haslam, The Spectator
"Mackrell's study suggests that in their quest for liberty, flappers were sold a bead-covered lemon."
Helen Zaltman, The Observer
". . .hugely entertaining. . . Mackrell has some fascinating stories to tell, and she tells them with compassion and skill. And in bringing these fascinating women back to life, she reminds today's women that our own lives would be very different without the trails their generation blazed." --Anna Carey, Irish Times
"Mackrell's entertaining account concentrates on six of the Twenties raciest women who scandalised London high society."
For many young women, the 1920s felt like a promise of liberty. It was a period when they dared to shorten their skirts and shingle their hair, to smoke, drink, take drugs and to claim sexual freedoms. In an era of soaring stock markets, consumer expansion, urbanization and fast travel, women were reimagining both the small detail and the large ambitions of their lives.
In Flappers, acclaimed biographer Judith Mackrell follows a group of six women - Diana Cooper, Nancy Cunard, Tallulah Bankhead, Zelda Fitzgerald, Josephine Baker and Tamara de Lempicka - who, between them, exemplified the range and daring of that generation's spirit. For them, the pursuit of experience was not just about dancing the Charleston and wearing fashionable clothes. They made themselves prominent among the artists, icons, and heroines of their age, pursuing experience in ways that their mothers could never have imagined, seeking to define what it was to be young and a woman in an age where the smashing of old certainties had thrown the world wide open.
Talented, reckless and wilful, with personalities that transcended their class and background, they re-wrote their destinies in remarkable, entertaining and sometimes tragic ways. And between them they blazed the trail of the New Woman around the world.
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