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  • Published: 1 November 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784743246
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 448
  • RRP: $35.00
Categories:

Edda Mussolini

The Most Dangerous Woman in Europe




A thrilling biography of Edda Mussolini - Benito Mussolini's favourite daughter - and a heart-stopping account of the unravelling of the Fascist dream in Italy, from award-winning historian and biographer Caroline Moorehead

Edda Mussolini was Benito's favourite daughter: spoilt, venal, uneducated but clever, faithless but flamboyant, a brilliant diplomat, wild but brave, and ultimately strong and loyal.

She was her father's confidante during the 20 years of Fascist rule, acting as envoy to both Germany and Britain, and playing a part in steering Italy to join forces with Hitler. From her early twenties she was effectively first lady of Italy. She married Galeazzo Ciano, who would become the youngest Foreign Secretary in Italian history, and they were the most celebrated and glamorous couple in elegant, vulgar Roman fascist society.

Their fortunes turned in 1943, when Ciano voted against Mussolini in a plot to bring him down, and his father-in-law did not forgive him. In a dramatic story that takes in hidden diaries, her father's fall and her husband's execution, an escape into Switzerland and a period in exile, we come to know a complicated, bold and determined woman who emerges not just as a witness but as a key player in some of the twentieth century's defining moments. And we see Fascist Italy with all its glamour, decadence and political intrigue, and the turbulence before its violent end.

  • Published: 1 November 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784743246
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 448
  • RRP: $35.00
Categories:

About the author

Caroline Moorehead

Caroline Moorehead is the biographer of Bertrand Russell, Freya Stark, Iris Origo and Martha Gellhorn. Her book on the French Resistance, Village of Secrets, was a Sunday Times bestseller and was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize in 2014. Her most recent book, A Bold and Dangerous Family, was shortlisted for the Costa Biography Award. She lives in London.

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Praise for Edda Mussolini

Painstakingly researched and vividly told, this engrossing history turns the spotlight on the deeply conflicted Edda Mussolini, brilliantly balancing the big picture with a wealth of telling detail.

CLARE MULLEY

In her wide-ranging biography of Edda Ciano, Caroline Moorehead subtly paints a compelling portrait of Mussolini's Italian dictatorship. She displays the regime's high and low moments, rigorously displaying its violence and warmongering as qualified by its corruption, contradictions and incompetence. Her book will take a leading place in all studies of the reality of Fascism, of fascism, of all authoritarians (and of quite a number of other political practitioners)

RICHARD BOSWORTH

Caroline Moorehead writes with her characteristic elegance, eye for detail and authoritative knowledge about a monster and a survivor. The story of Mussolini's glamorous daughter is certainly a fascinating one

MIRANDA SEYMOUR

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