The Favourite

The Favourite

‘An incredible story crackling with royal passion, envy, ambition and betrayal … Field’s account of the psychological power play between Queen Anne and her confidante is surely definitive. A tour de force’ Lucy Worsley

Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough (1660-1774), was as glamorous as she was controversial. Politically influential and independently powerful, she was an intimate, and then a blackmailer, of Queen Anne, accusing her of keeping lesbian favourites – including Sarah’s own cousin Abigail Masham.

Ophelia Field’s masterly biography, published in a new and updated edition, brings Sarah Churchill’s own voice, passionate and intelligent, back to life. Here is an unforgettable portrait of a woman who cared intensely about how we would remember her.
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Genre: Biography & True Stories / Biography: General / Biography: Historical, Political & Military

On Sale: 29th November 2018

Price: £9.99

ISBN-13: 9781474605366

Reviews

Scholarly, highly articulate, and above all never dull
Sunday Telegraph
Nowhere is the subtlety of Ophelia Field's historical understanding more apparent than in her delicate reading of the relationship between Sarah and Anne. That it is Field's first book is something of a wonder ... An outstandingly accomplished debut
Guardian
She is a marvellous subject for a biography and Ophelia Field's book, capacious and beautifully detailed, does her full justice. It is the first work by a writer who is a master of her craft
Independent
Other historians have skirted around the true nature of Sarah and Anne's passionate friendship, with its lesbian overtones, but Ophelia Field tackles the subject courageously ... During her long life Sarah managed to quarrel with almost everyone and took great care in editing her papers to ensure that posterity would know her side of the story, which is covered exhaustively by Field in this impressive debut
The Times
Field draws effectively on Sarah's letters and self-justifying memoirs to produce a remarkable portrait
Sunday Times
Field has created an unforgettable picture of a remarkable figure ... Instead of fictionalizing her, Field shows how Sarah became a kind of fictional and artistic icon, a symbol of certain kinds of power that remained free of the checks and balances that the new settlement and constitution was bent on establishing. Even after 250 years, she fascinates like nobody else of her time
Sunday Herald
A quite astonishing tale
London Review of Books
Once you have started reading Ophelia Field's splendid book, it is hard to put it down
The Lady
Scholarly but never less than fascinating, Field's debut truly brings to life the complex character of Sarah Churchill and the last of the Stuart courts
Aberdeen Evening Express
A masterly biography which brilliantly captures the power and passion of its subject. This is an exemplary study of an extraordinary woman
A lively and provocative biography of a fascinating woman, which is crafted with style and vivacity. I am sure it will appeal to both scholars and the general reading public alike
Behind every great man, they say, is a strong woman. Sarah Duchess of Marlborough, the not always cozy confidante of Queen Anne, looms large over the 18th century, and Ophelia Field has done a remarkable - and surely definitive - job in bringing her story to life
This is an incredible story crackling with royal passion, envy, ambition and betrayal, and Field's account of the psychological power play between Queen Anne and her confidante is surely definitive. A tour de force