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Synopsis

Funny, indiscreet, candid, touching and sharply observed, this second compilation from James Lees-Milne's celebrated diaries covers his life during his sixties and early seventies, when he was living in Gloucestershire with his formidable wife Alvilde. It vividly portrays life on the Badminton estate of the eccentric Duke of Beaufort, meetings with many friends (including John Betjeman, Bruce Chatwin and the Mitford sisters) and the diarist's varied emotional experiences. Having made his name as the National Trust's country houses expert and a writer on architecture, he now established himself as a novelist and biographer. With some misgivings he published his wartime diaries, little imagining that it was as a diarist that he would achieve lasting fame.

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