Sheila : The Australian Beauty who Bewitched British Society
She wedded earls and barons, befriended literary figures and movie stars, bedded a future king, was feted by London and New York society for 40 years, and died a Russian princessAs a child Sheila Chisholm chased kangaroos on horseback and swam with sharks at Bondi Beach. As a young woman she nursed soldiers wounded at Gallipoli, married an English lord, became a darling of London society, and had an affair with "Bertie," the future King of England. By the age of 30 Sheila had captivated America, leaving Hollywood and the high society of New York and Florida smitten by her charm and grace. She was courted by Rudolph Valentino and Vincent Astor among others, was a confidante of the Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton, and a close friend of the Kennedys, the Vanderbilts, and the society hostess Elsie Maxwell. Her showbiz circle included Sophie Tucker, Charlie Chaplin, Fred and Adele Astaire, and Douglas Fairbanks. Who was this remarkable woman who was so warmly welcomed into the palaces, mansions, and clubs of the elite? Filled with scandalous revelations, Sheila is essential reading.
Robert Wainwright has been a journalist for 25 years, rising from the grassroots of country journalism in Western Australia to a senior writer with the The Sydney Morning Herald. His career has ranged from politics to crime, always focussing on the people behind the major news of the day. He is the author of Rose: The unauthorised biography of Rose Hancock Porteous (2002), The Lost Boy (2004) and The Killing of Caroline Byrne (2009).