Louisa is an ordinary girl living in Victorian London. She is looking for a job and ends up talking her way into the kitchen of a Lords townhouse. The Lord has a rather snooty French chef, ...
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Change is in the air at the hotel and in the lives of its many residents. An American writer, Sophie Applegate, would like to pen a book about Louisa's life, successes and failures. Louise isn't all ...
Lillie Langtry, trapped in a loveless marriage, takes full advantage of her beauty, attracting many lovers and admirers including the Prince of Wales and Oscar Wilde. As her husband slowly ... See full summary »
Peggy Ann Wood
In the 1840s, Cranford is ruled by the ladies. They adore good gossip; and romance and change is in the air, as the unwelcome grasp of the Industrial Revolution rapidly approaches their beloved rural market-town.
Brian Ash is a young lieutenant who is assigned to a UXB unit in the early days of World War II. UXB (UneXploded Bomb) is the signal that an aerial bomb has not exploded. Ash's job is to ... See full summary »
18th-century England and Ireland viewed through the eyes of four beautiful high-born sisters - Caroline, Emily, Louisa, and Sarah Lennox, great-granddaughters of a king, daughters of a cabinet minister, and wives of politicians and peers.
The British Raj: though their position seems secure, thoughtful English men and women know that "their" time in India is coming to an end. The story begins with an unjust arrest for rape, ... See full summary »
An adaptation of Flora Thompson's autobiographical novel "Lark Rise To Candleford", set in 19 century Oxfordshire, in which a young girl moves to the local market town to begin an apprenticeship as a postmistress.
Louisa is an ordinary girl living in Victorian London. She is looking for a job and ends up talking her way into the kitchen of a Lords townhouse. The Lord has a rather snooty French chef, Louisa quickly develops a strong desire to become a top cook, women back then couldn't be chefs. Through hard work and sheer determination she wins over the chef and he begins to teach her his art. She quickly proves that she has a huge talent in the art of cooking. This brings her to the attention of three very different men, all of which will play huge but very different roles in her future. Partly because of who she knows, but mostly by her own extremely strong will and work ethic she goes on to be very successful, in a time when independent women were something of an oddity.Written by
Deirdre of the Sorrows
If you loved the BBC mini-series "Upstairs, Downstairs", you will adore "The Duchess Of Duke Street". Produced by some of the same people, with many of the same actors popping up in character roles, it almost feels like a re-visiting of the Bellamy household to some extent. It's the same Victorian-Edwardian time period, similar examinations of the class differences between servants and masters, same colorful, plucky people going through life discussing politics, war, scandals, etc. Gemma Jones as Louisa Trotter is utterly fantastic in her role, showing multi-layers of this Cockney girl's character that are absolutely fascinating to watch. Gemma had the role of a lifetime in Louisa, and she is simply unforgettable. Christopher Cazenove is so handsome as Charlie Hazelmere he just about takes your breath away. He brightens up every scene he is in with his presence, adorable smile and flashing eyes. Joanna David is touching as the tragic and anorexic Margaret. All the secondary characters will touch your heart and leave a lasting impression: Mary, Starr, The Major, and the hysterically funny Mr. Merriman (same actor who played Soames' father in the original "The Forsyte Saga"). This series is definitely worth the money to obtain all 31 episodes in the currently offered two VHS boxed sets. Just wish it were on DVD. After I purchased mine I watched the entire series straight through on one weekend; it was completely addictive. The video prints for Duchess are of much better quality than the ones for Upstairs, Downstairs, which were grainy and off-colored for the most part. Plus another positive: each tape has three episodes blended into one, without being interrupted by end titles and music. This allows for smooth transitions and a more enjoyable viewing experience, almost like watching a movie. Duchess Of Duke Street is a must-have series for all people who love quality British television.
2006 Update: there are now DVDs for this series, Series One. Hooray! We're anxiously awaiting a DVD box collection here in the US for Series Two.
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