Contessa Author:Helene Mansfield Her debut was brilliant. Le tout Paris wondered at the identity of this beautiful girl who had so obviously caught the Prince of Wales' eye. The ball was a fantasy come true and with an innocent's trust, Valentina looked forward to a future of similar triumphs in her beloved Paris. But her fate was to be otherwise. Valentina's family's great ... more »fortune had been gambled away, and to avoid the scandal of bankruptcy, Valentina is sent to Russia, to marry a man she has never met, but whose reputation for cruelty exceeds his enormous fortune.
And so begins CONTESSA, the story of a strong-willed beauty whose tempestuous life leads her through the great events of modern times: chaos and revolution in Russia; the disintegration of old-world values in postwar Paris; Spain during the Civil War; and finally Paris in World War II.
CONTESSA is a novel in the grand tradition, the saga of a heroic romantic life and of a woman who dazzles everyone with her grace, elegance, intelligence and beauty, and who perseveres through tragedy and danger, into the heart of the twentieth century and a world she could never have imagined, but which she comes to call her own.« less