The Grit in the Pearl

The Scandalous Life of Margaret, Duchess of Argyll
Narrated by: Lucy Rayner
Length: 9 hrs and 26 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Margaret, Duchess of Argyll (1912-1993) was an international celebrity in her youth, adored and observed by millions. But in 1963, the year of the Profumo Affair, the 11th Duke of Argyll shocked the country when he alleged that his adulterous wife had slept with over 80 men behind his back. He produced, as his evidence, a set of sexually explicit Polaroid photographs and explosive love letters. The duke won a divorce, but this had a dramatic effect on Margaret's life. On the verge of financial destitution, she fell from grace and was abandoned by most of her friends prior to her death in a nursing home in Pimlico in 1993. 

Lyndsy Spence tells a tragic story of the life and downfall of this fascinatingly complex woman, and shows how she fell victim to a cruel husband, harsh social mores, and an unforgiving class. It uses new sources, including taped conversations, an unexpurgated transcript of her divorce trial, interviews, and letters. The Grit in the Pearl is a meticulously researched and powerful biography, which acts as a potent lens on various themes in the last century: fame, privacy, the media, sex, power, and relationships between classes.

©2019 Lyndsy Spence (P)2019 Tantor

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Delicious from start to finish!

I absolutely LOVED this book! Honestly, one of my favorite audible books ever. I adored Margaret with all her flaws and eccentricities. I went along for the ride of this story right from the start and was not bored for a moment . The narrater, Lucy Rayner is stellar. I just enjoy listening to her speak! I highly recommend this book, in fact I did tonight, told my friend she has to buy this book....
Thank you Lyndsy Spense and Lucy Rayner!

3 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for OSAGE
  • OSAGE
  • 01-25-20

Narrator is sing song and drove me nuts..

The book is excellent I will get in book form - I have a ton of these audio book and this one is the one I could not listen too as the narrator is not for me... This woman was amazing in everyway.. was there ever love. just a series of transactions so she could spend someone else's money

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  • Angelcritique
  • 01-13-20

A prideful life

The intricacies of the life of The Duchess of Argyll recounted here will certainly hold the attention of the reader who is interested in 'Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.' How much of the information is factual, tittle tattle or the 'massaged and edited' versions of events we'll never know. Pride, arrogance and a sense of 'entitlement' coupled with a complete absence of a moral code is displayed by the central characters here. Still, I couldn't help feeling sad for the Duchess' final predicament. The narrator sounds like a lady of the night in 'seduction' mode. Not helpful.