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Download Rose: My Life in Service to Lady Astor Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Rose: My Life in Service to Lady Astor Audiobook, by Rosina Harrison Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.52 out of 53.52 out of 53.52 out of 53.52 out of 53.52 out of 5 3.52 (25 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Rosina Harrison Narrator: Wanda McCaddon Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2012 ISBN: 9781452680859
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In 1928, Rosina Harrison arrived at the illustrious household of the Astor family to take up her new position as personal maid to the infamously temperamental Lady Nancy Astor, who sat in Parliament, entertained royalty, and traveled the world. "She's not a lady as you would understand a lady" was the butler's ominous warning. But what no one expected was that the iron-willed Lady Astor was about to meet her match in the no-nonsense, whip-smart girl from the country.For thirty-five years, from the parties thrown for royalty and trips across the globe, to the air raids during World War II, Rose was by Lady Astor's side and behind the scenes, keeping everything running smoothly. In charge of everything from the clothes and furs to the baggage to the priceless diamond "sparklers," Rose was closer to Lady Astor than anyone else. In her decades of service she received one 5-pound raise, but she traveled the world in style and retired with a lifetime's worth of stories. Like Gosford Park and Downton Abbey, Rose is not only a captivating insight into the great wealth 'upstairs' and the endless work 'downstairs'; it is also the story of an unlikely decades-long friendship that grew between Her Ladyship and her spirited Yorkshire maid. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • Lady Astor's personal maid reveals her 'upstairs, downstairs' relationships with England's grandest family. . . . Fascinating and deliciously readable! The New York Times Book Review

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jenny Brown | 2/15/2014

    " I, like everyone else I think, picked this up between seasons of "Downton Abbey." And this was a fun stand-in until new episodes began. Rose is quite frank in telling the dirty truths of being a maid--not nearly so easy as it appears on screen--and her relationship with Lady Astor was quite difficult, but truly caring it seems. The downfall of the book is in simply too much detail. I flew through the first half of the book, but there were many names dropped and extensive detail that weighed the second half of the book down. A worthy read for fans of the era; to be skipped by everyone else. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diane S. | 2/7/2014

    " 3.5 Fascinating glimpse of a world gone by, of the very rich, and their many extremes of behavior. Loved reading about Rose and her early life, her family and the support she received from her mother who helped her become a ladies maid. The hierarchy of the servant class placed a ladies maid nearer to the top, but it was still hard work. Lady Astor, who was the first woman elected to parliament was by all accounts very difficult, a difficulty that Rose had to learn to negotiate in order to perform her duties and still retain something of her own characters. This she does to marvelous effect. I think I would have liked to have met this plucky woman. Fans of Downton Abbey and Upstairs Downstairs will enjoy this account. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kristen | 2/7/2014

    " This was nice to read in conjunction with Below Stairs. As a lady's maid, she was in the middle of all the Up Stairs action, which is not something you get from Below Stairs at all. Rose's account of WWII was fascinating. I wasn't always sure if I liked her, mostly due to the fact that she worked so closely with the Astors and then wrote a book about them, but it was an interesting and quick read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jo | 2/5/2014

    " Apart from some dire spelling mistakes this was a great read, very interesting and detailed. A life such as Rose's 'in service' is unimaginable to most women nowadays so this was a real insight. A must-read for fans of Downton! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ingrid Lola | 2/1/2014

    " Not a masterpiece but still pretty entertaining. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Becky | 1/30/2014

    " Autobiography of a woman who served as Lady Astor's lady's maid from 1928 until her death 30 years later. There were lots of amusing tidbits, although I think her claims of the way she smartmouthed her employer might be a bit exaggerated. If you love Downton Abbey you will find this book interesting, as what is portrayed on that show is pretty consistent with this firsthand recounting of that time period. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 1/30/2014

    " Another Downton Abbey readalike. I liked the oral history feel of the book, although you could definitely say that the account was a little too rose-colored. If you liked this, try Below Stairs by Margaret Powell. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pam | 1/25/2014

    " Interesting look at life as a ladys' maid to Lady Astor. Mostly an overview of all that goes into running a large estate smoothly. Fans of Downton Abbey will enjoy her tales of drama working for a difficult woman. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah Arendt | 1/14/2014

    " Preachy and sentimental (you can never trust a memoir), but still entertaining. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amanda | 1/11/2014

    " I LOVE this book. I learned so much about British history through the Astor family. I love the voice of Rose, the narrator and the fun tidbits about being a maid in such a large household. It was like having a book from Anna's point of view in Downton Abbey. I cannot recommend this book enough! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Eliza | 12/31/2013

    " This book was very interesting but since I'm not up on mid 1900s British history there were quite a few references I did not understand. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Barbara Parker | 12/18/2013

    " Life in Victorian England's grand houses through the eyes of a ladie's maid. Excellent read! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathy | 12/18/2013

    " This is a little gem to read while waiting for the next season of Downton Abbey. What a charming glimpse into the world of service and society that otherwise seems the stuff of fiction. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jullie | 12/10/2013

    " I enjoyed a first-person account of a Lady's maid. An honest and insightful story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura Burkholder | 11/30/2013

    " What an interesting picture of a time gone by and a different way of life. We can all learn from Rose's work ethic, values and outlook... Inspires me to try and live up to that same way of living "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ronald | 11/22/2013

    " Very readable... interesting insight into another age... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephanie | 11/21/2013

    " Although I am a fan of Matserpiece Theatre's Downton Abbey, there simply was nothing revelatory in author Rose Harrison's memoir about her career as a lady's maid for Lady Astor to have made me continue reading if the book were not selected by my book club group. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathyred | 11/5/2013

    " Really cool look at what really goes on in an upper-crust house. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bonniej | 8/26/2013

    " Great book; interesting to hear about life as a servant to Lady Astor. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Airlia Gustafson | 7/21/2013

    " I had to read this to taper off after the final episode of the season of Downton Abbey. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laura | 7/10/2013

    " It was very interesting but not a book I just couldn't wait to get back to. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Camilla | 5/23/2013

    " No-nonsense, unsentimental account. And if you like that it's great! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amy S. Foster | 5/22/2013

    " The real Upstairs Downstairs- a lovely read. I wish I had the chance to meet this woman. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melanie | 3/7/2013

    " This reprinted memior fits in with the PBS show Downton Abbey. The writing isn't polished and the narrative jumps around, but the voice is authentic. Rose's story and the people she talked about were very interesting. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Wendy | 1/28/2013

    " Interesting read. A little disjointed, but it felt like I was listening to a little old lady recounting her life in a Downton Abbey-esque way. It was a nice book to fill the massive void in my heart that Downton Abbey is in hiatus until next year. "

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About the Narrator

Wanda McCaddon (a.k.a. Nadia May or Donada Peters) has narrated well over six hundred titles for major audiobook publishers, has earned numerous Earphones Awards, and was named a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine.