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Download Desert Queen: The Extraordinary Life of Gertrude Bell: Adventurer, Adviser to Kings, Ally of Lawrence of Arabia Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Desert Queen: The Extraordinary Life of Gertrude Bell: Adventurer, Adviser to Kings, Ally of Lawrence of Arabia, by Janet Wallach Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,075 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Janet Wallach Narrator: Jean Gilpin Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Turning away from the privileged world of the eminent Victorians, Gertrude Bell (1868–1926) explored, mapped, and excavated the world of the Arabs. Recruited by British intelligence during World War I, she played a crucial role in obtaining the loyalty of Arab leaders, and her connections and information provided the brains to match T. E. Lawrence’s brawn. After the war, she played a major role in creating the modern Middle East and was, at the time, considered the most powerful woman in the British Empire.

In this masterful biography, Janet Wallach shows us the woman behind these achievements—a woman whose passion and defiant independence were at odds wit the confined and custom-bound England she left behind. Too long eclipsed by Lawrence, Gertrude Bell emerges at last in her own right as a vital player on the stage of modern history, and as a woman whose life was both a heartbreaking story and a grand adventure.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A richly textured biography of a…woman who devoted her life to knowing the desert Arabs better, perhaps, than any other European of her day…Wallach comfortably commands the tangled political and diplomatic history of the Middle East.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • Desert Queen, as timely as today’s headlines, plucks Gertrude Bell out of the shadow of Lawrence of Arabia.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Wallach has done an outstanding job of bringing Gertrude Bell to life.”

    Dallas Morning News

  • “From the swarm of particulars emerges a curious soul--hard traveler, hack for Empire, cosmopolite, iconoclast, anti-suffragist—a complex, absorbing character, long overdue for study.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jenna Fletcher | 2/14/2014

    " Very interesting. A book that you are glad you read but hard to read at the time. I feel much more informed about the recent history of the mid east. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Valena | 2/11/2014

    " Sadly, this belongs on my shelf of books that I "read"... but never actually finished. I remember being very engrossed, and then gradually started skipping pages, and then just didn't finish... Fascinating figure as a premise, though! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Liz | 2/10/2014

    " I read this as a comparison to the other Gertrude Bell novel by Howell. This version might have been a bit more readable but essentially covered the same territory. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Judith T | 2/2/2014

    " A page-turner portraying a fascinating woman. Subject of an upcoming movie. "

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