MAY AND AMY : A TRUE STORY OF FAMILY, FORBIDDEN LOVE, AND THE SECRET LIVES OF MAY GASKELL, HER DAUGHTER AMY, AND SIR EDWARD BURNE-JONES
by Josceline Dimbleby
Andrew Lloyd Webber collects art by Pre-Raphaelite painters. One of the portraits, in his home, is of a beautiful, haunting young woman painted by Sir Edward Burne-Jones. The subject of the painting is Amy Gaskell, the author's great-aunt, who had died young "of a broken heart."
Josceline Dimbleby always wanted to know about her family's past and sets out on a quest to discover the secrets. She comes across unpublished letters from Burne-Jones to May Gaskell, her, unhappily, married great-grandmother. The correspondence is passionate, adoring, intimate and continues for six years. Through paintings, family photographs and writings mysteries and tragedies of the Gaskell family are revealed.
May and Amy is a riveting memoir of the Victorian era. Great sleuth work.
A highly, enjoyable read.