^'s Reviews > Wait For Me!: Memoirs Of The Youngest Mitford Sister

Wait For Me! by Deborah Cavendish
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Sep 04, 14

bookshelves: good-to-read-aloud, non-fiction, autobiography, outsourced, books-with-1001-to-10000-ratings, review-liked, author-female
Recommended to ^ by: my mother
Recommended for: Brides
Read from June 02 to 07, 2011, read count: 1

Deborah Devonshire (DD) writes superbly. She knows how to tell a story because she looks at the world not only from her own direct experience, but also from her ever-present keen consideration of those around her. To find such selflessness is a truly humbling experience in itself. There is a very British saying, 'By your friends ye are known'. Selflessness engenders deep and loyal friendships, and many, many of them. At this point I have to also compliment her editor, Charlotte Moseley, and her secretary, Helen Marchant; one can barely begin to imagine the invaluable assistance they have given in recording, ordering, consistency-checking, completing, and presenting this account of a remarkably chock-full life led to the full.

Yes, there must always be a degree of ‘luck’ associated with what family one is born into, with what relatives; as well as into what year. Hindsight is a blessed gift. DD was born into a remarkable family (and extended families), and has lived, and continues to live, through a succession of extraordinary times. She has clearly suffered much tragedy and sadness. What this book humbly, but clearly, depicts is how she somehow always (or almost always) manages to find good in bad, consolation through grief, new growth from dead ends.

What is truly remarkable is how understatedly and successfully DD communicates that very British, desirable, innate (unconsciously so) character which is the antithesis of the modern, present-day celebrity. I speak of the difference between one who thinks of and serves others before herself, and one who is wholly selfish and self-absorbed.

At first, I thought, "why does this book contain photographs of her bedroom and sitting-room?" I concluded, "Because they are beautiful, elegant, and comfortable." Whether or not we possess ancestral antiques, we can all aspire to furnish our rooms with that thought in mind. Secondly, I thought how depressing it would be if even a duchess couldn’t have beautiful rooms!

I'm always pleased to find a book which I have very, very, much enjoyed has been published by John Murray. I often buy older, second-hand, books based on that recommendation, and have never been let down.
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