The Glitter and the Gold

  • by Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan
  • Narrated by Coleen Marlo
  • 9 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Consuelo Vanderbilt was young, beautiful and the heir to a vast family fortune. She was also deeply in love with an American suitor when her mother chose instead for her to fulfill her social ambitions and marry an English Duke. Leaving her life in America, she came to England as the Duchess of Marlborough in 1895 and took up residence in her new home: Blenheim Palace.
The ninth Duchess gives unique first-hand insight into life at the very pinnacle of English society in the Edwardian era. An unsnobbish, but often amused observer of the intricate hierarchy both upstairs and downstairs at Blenheim Palace, she is also a revealing witness to the glittering balls, huge weekend parties, and major state occasions she attended or hosted. Here are her encounters with every important figure of the day - from Queen Victoria, Edward VII, and Queen Alexandra to Tsar Nicholas, Prince Metternich, and the young Winston Churchill.
This intimate, richly enjoyable memoir is a wonderfully revealing portrait of a golden age.

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What the Critics Say

"A woman of poise, beauty, and charm looks back on her life at the very center of the most opulent and aristocratic society of three countries, the United States, Britain, and France... and emerges... a woman of courage, public spirit, refinement, and surprisingly democratic convictions." (The New York Times)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Entertaining w/ very distracting mispronunciation

What made the experience of listening to The Glitter and the Gold the most enjoyable?

Very enjoyable, especially if you are familiar with the public figures of the Edwardian period. Wonderful descriptions of the upper class life style of the time.


Would you be willing to try another one of Coleen Marlo’s performances?

Not unless I was very eager to listen to the book, which in this case, I was. She was obviously trying to affect a "posh" American accent and rightly so. However, her constant mispronunciations in her reading made me gnash my teeth!


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- elizabeth

Nice story, haughty-sounding narrator

Consuelo was a gem. Coleen, not so much. Insights on the Victorian/Edwardian eras as well as the 2 world wars from a wealthy philanthropic woman's perspective.
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- Mrs. Debra E. Humm-bremser

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-16-2012
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio