Mourning becomes her

A seasonal audiobook. Narrated by the superb actress, Pippa Rathborne.

Pippa Rathborne

 Regency Fashion Plate of woman and child in Mourning Metropolitan Museum of Art

‘What was one more opinion about the future of European politics
compared to the fate of two little boys?’

The audiobook version of Barbara Metzger’s celebration of adoption and stepfamily love,
a precious gift wrapped inside a Regency Romance, narrated by Pippa Rathborne


Now available on Audible UK, Audible US, Amazon and iTunes,

“That’s the best present of all! It’s one of my Christmas wishes come true!”


‘Even the longest journey comes to an end except, perhaps, the journey to self-awareness.’ Barbara Metzger

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Regency Lady Detective

Do you like audiobooks? This new one is narrated by the excellent Pippa Rathborne. Full details on her blog post.

Pippa Rathborne

“This is my investigation”

A Seacoast Promenade Fashion for October 1809. Fashion plate engraving from La Belle Assemblée.

“Maylene says it’s all a matter of logic and reasoning,
but I always believe there’s another force
guiding her, a talent.”

Miss Treadwell’s Talent by Barbara Metzger,
narrated by Pippa Rathborne,
is now available as an audiobook

Lady Caroline Lamb in page’s costume, painted by Thomas Phillips, 1813

Dash it, would this dinner never end?…
There was not even going to be one of the baroness’s bogus journeys beyond for entertainment.

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Being invisible

Pippa does not allow Likes and Comments on her blog. She posts rarely, but always has something to say when she does. So I have decided to reblog her short post from today, to make more people aware of her many talents.

Pippa Rathborne

“Acting for me was a salvation into which I fell, a piece of the family puzzle that was given to me, and I snapped it in place, and there was now a whole image, a fuller person, something where previously there had been nothing…. acting affords me the luxury of metaphysical time travel….of living within someone else’s skin…

Acting is the only way I know of in which we can live the fantasy of being invisible.”

Alec Guinness, in an interview with James Grissom, 1991

Thalia drops her mask for a moment and, believing she is unobserved off-stage, looks disillusioned and exhausted.
She wanted to practise her ancient art invisibly, not sell it in the modern industry. I know how she feels.

Thalia, sculpture by Giovanni Volpato. 1790s Bisque, Liebieghaus, Frankfurt. Image: Web Gallery of Art

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The Modern Salonnière

Pippa has let us know the sad news of the death of Sarah Vernon. Accomplished actress and artist, and one of the cornerstones of our blogging community for many years. She published the sites Rogues and Vagabonds, First Night Design, First Night History, and First Night Art. One of the first bloggers I followed, and someone I am proud to say I counted as a good friend.


This is a post from 2013 dedicated to my great friend, Sarah Vernon, who died last week.

Through bad health and bad luck, Sarah’s acting career was cut short. Like many actors’ children, she could never be sure if she would have gone into the entertainment industry if her parents had not been actors. It wasn’t an industry for Sarah: it was a romance and an art. Being an actor wasn’t a job for Sarah: it was body and soul, an act of love uniting emotional aspiration with technical accomplishment, a child’s dream of perfection made real. Don’t put your daughter on the stage.

Sarah could have been a casualty of the devil’s profession, but she had a brain, a life-sustaining sense of humour, and other artistic and literary talents. She engaged in the present and the past with equal intellectual force, she was computer and internet savvy, and…

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