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On the Wilder Shores of Love: Sketches from a Bohemian Life

Sunday 22 March 2015

1 Hour


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Georgia de Chamberet, goddaughter and literary executor of the writer Lesley Blanch, talks to historian Philip Mansel about a new collection of Blanch’s writings that she has edited. The pieces include a memoir Blanch was writing at her death, letters and feature articles – some of them previously unpublished – that capture the writer’s rich and rewarding life. Blanch, who died in 2007 at the age of 103, is best known for her bestselling book, The Wilder Shores of Love. She and her diplomat-novelist husband Romain Gary became literary celebrities in Hollywood. After Gary left her for the young actress Jean Seberg, Blanch travelled across Siberia, Outer Mongolia, Turkey, Iran, Samarkand, Afghanistan, Egypt, and the Sahara.

De Chamberet was an editor at Quartet Books before founding her own literary agency, BookBlast Ltd. Mansel is a historian specialising in France and the Ottoman Empire and knew Blanch well during the last 15 years of her life. He is author of Constantinople: City of the World’s Desire 1453-1924 and Levant: Splendour and Catastrophe on the Mediterranean, and is working on a history of Aleppo and a life of Louis XIV.