Opening with the shooting of Lady Virginia Courtauld in 1950s Rhodesia, The Dragon Lady tells the story of Ginie Courtauld and the snake tattoo that seals her reputation as a boundary-breaker. It is the second novel from Louisa Treger and it's our June book club pick. As always, we have 50 copies to give away.
From the glamorous Italian Riviera before the Great War via the Art Deco glory of Eltham Palace, through to segregated Rhodesia in the 1950s, The Dragon Lady spans an era of enormous cultural and social change. It follows Virginia Courtauld as a newly-wed marchesa, then an ostracised divorcée and now as the wife of Stephen Courtauld.
The couple build their home, La Rochelle, in Rhodesia where they also fund projects including the National Art Gallery. But their hopes to forge a new life as progressive liberals prove to be mortally dangerous.
Subtly blending fact and fiction, The Dragon Lady explores the real Virginia Courtauld, a woman who rejected the role of submissive wife and was as unconventional as she was pioneering.
Louisa Treger, a classical violinist, studied at the Royal College of Music and the Guildhall School of Music. She subsequently turned to literature, earning a Ph.D. in English at University College London. Her first novel, The Lodger, was published in 2014.
The Dragon Lady is published by Bloomsbury and is available online and from all good booksellers. We have 50 copies to give away: if you do receive one, we need you to add your questions and comments for Louisa to the thread (coming soon!) by the end of June so please ONLY apply if this time frame works for you.