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A Woman of Substance by Barbara Taylor…
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A Woman of Substance

by Barbara Taylor Bradford

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8281810,928 (3.85)19
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    Wildflower Hill by Kimberley Freeman (silva_44)
    silva_44: The character Beattie from Wildflower Hill is incredibly similar to Emma in A Woman of Substance. Both women face daunting circumstances but strive for excellence despite many severe setbacks.
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Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
I read this book years ago. It has stood the test of time and is my all-time favorite book. I have always credited this book as what prompted my love of reading about powerful and strong women. If you have NOT read this book - you simply MUST. If you HAVE read this book - read it again!

It is the rags to riches story of a British woman who goes from working as a simple maid to becoming the powerful head of a business empire in the early 20th century. It is a magnificent novel about the strength and commitment one woman has to pull herself out of poverty and the sacrifices she makes to survive and become powerful in a world and age dominated by men. ( )
  edachille | Jan 13, 2014 |
I read this book many years ago but remember it so clearly even now. My threadbare copy has been in many of my friends' hands. The Irish accents are so well conveyed that I found myself speaking with an Irish lilt after reading this book. Emma Harte is one of the most memorable characters I have ever read about. I don't think any of this author's books comes close to this one. loved it. ( )
  EllenCam | May 25, 2013 |
Love this book. Emma is one strong willed woman. Fights her way to top and does everything she can to stay there. I was easily pulled into her world and enjoyed being there through the good times and bad. ( )
  theresahope | Jul 20, 2012 |
I love historical fiction, and to my mind there aren't enough that focus on the drama of building a business, so the premise of this appealed to me. It's the rag to riches story of a British woman who went from lowly maid to powerful head of a business empire in the early 20th century when women weren't by and large able to rise to such heights.

However, the writing style here was puerile romance aisle, and far too wretched to make me willing to stay with this for over 900 trade paperback pages. Within ten pages we have such cliched and purple writing as "implacable mouth" and eyes "cold as steel," (Emma Harte's, our heroine--they're green--classic Mary Sue color--as is those of her granddaughter protege--those are "violet.") and loads of adverb, adjective and simile prose pile-ups and dizzying point of view shifts. I guess there's something to be said for getting engrossed in a trashy book, but I knew dozens, let alone hundreds of pages of this would drive me insane. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Jul 25, 2011 |
Near 800 pages, but still an easy read. Emma Harte, in 1968, is a very wealthy woman. The book goes back to when she is 15 kitchen maid at the turn of the century, and tells how she gained her wealth, and what she lost along the way
  nordie | Jun 17, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
The value of life lies not in the length of days, but in the use we make of them: a man may live long, yet get little from life. Whether you find satisfaction in life depends not on your tale of years, but on your will.

--Montaigne, Essays

I have the heart of a man, not of a woman, and I am not afraid of anything...

--Elizabeth I, Queen of England
Dedication
For Bob and my parents--
who knew the reasons why
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Emma Harte leaned forward and looked out of the window.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312935579, Mass Market Paperback)

A celebration of an indomitable spirit, here is New York Times bestselling author Barbara Taylor Bradford's dazzling saga of a woman who dared to dream--and to triumph against all odds...

In the brooding moors above a humble Yorkshire village stood Fairley Hall. There, Emma Harte, its oppressed but resourceful servant girl, acquired a shrewd determination. There, she honed her skills, discovered the meaning of treachery, learned to survive, to become a woman,
and vowed to make her mark on the world.

In the wake of tragedy she rose from poverty to magnificent wealth as the iron-willed force behind a thriving international enterprise. As one of the richest women in the world Emma Harte has almost everything she fought so hard to achieve--save for the dream of love,
and for the passion of the one man she could never have.

Through two marriages, two devastating wars, and generations of secrets, Emma's unparalleled success has come with a price. As greed, envy, and revenge consume those closest to her, the brilliant matriarch now finds herself poised to outwit her enemies, and to face the betrayals of the past with the same ingenious resolve that forged her empire.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:31:32 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

Emma Harte rises from an impoverished, pregnant servant to the heights of wealth and power as she parlays a small shop into the world's finest department store, outwitting her enemies, seeking revenge on her betrayers, and realizing her greatest dreams.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

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