The Christmas season is over but there is still excitement in the air. Season 4 of Downton Abbey is getting ready to premiere in the USA. I have my teapot warmed up and ready for the big night.
To fill the time while I wait for the show to premiere, I've been feeding my history addiction with Edwardian and pre and post WWI books.
Over the holidays, I read two Downton Abbey inspired books.
Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highlcere Castle by the Countess of Carvnarvon. It is a biography of Lady Almina, wife of the 5th Earl of Carnarvon of the tomb of Tutankhamen fame. She was the inspiration for the fictional Lady Cora and her story, as well as her nursing work during WWI, is interesting and well worth the read.
Mouseton Abbey. This was the second Downton Abbey inspired book that I read over the holidays. I received this as a present to read with my little one who sometimes watches Gosford Park or episodes of Downton Abbey with me on Netflix. It is a cute story with enough play on the names of cheese to keep readers of all ages amused.
Below are two other books I recommend for anyone interested in the era of Downton Abbey.
The Perfect Summer: England 1911, Just Before the Storm by Juliet Nicolson
The book has nothing to do with Downton Abbey, but discusses the era of Season 1 when change was in the air but the Edwardian era was still in full swing. The books deals with all classes from the rich and titled to the working poor and how they lived before WWI and many other social changes altered it all.
The Last Great Edwardian Lady by Ingrid Seward is a great biography of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. Although it is an excellent look at her life as a whole, the Queen Mother's youth was during the era of Downton Abbey. The biography offers a fascinating look into the lives of the nobility and the royal family during the era.
I hope you find a few new reads and have fun watching the season premiere!