Heather's books

Sarah's Key
The Help
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
New Moon
Breaking Dawn
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
The Lightning Thief
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
The Notebook
Eat, Pray, Love
The Time Traveler's Wife
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Heather's favorite books »

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Inspiration for Downton Abbey

Below Stairs: The Classic Kitchen Maid's Memoir That Inspired "Upstairs, Downstairs" and "Downton Abbey"
Below Stairs: The Classic Kitchen Maid’s Memoir That Inspired Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey

By: Margaret Powell

Genre: Biography

Pages: 212

Published: 2012

Read: October

3.5 out of 5

First published in 1968, this biography is written in the high standards that avid readers place on books today. This was not only impressive, but also unique. In the retelling of her life as a servant, Powell does so with humor and grace.  The reader won’t feel sad for her, but instead proud of her and her accomplishments.  I do believe this was her intent and the book was not written to gain sympathy, just awareness. This biography also exemplifies the difference between good and bad employers. Powell stresses several times throughout the novel, what a difference a good employer is to a servant’s, or any employee’s, attitude towards work. My favorite aspect of the book was the comedic side of Powell’s storytelling.

Margaret Powell, who died in 1984, also wrote Servants’ Hall: a Real Life Upstairs, Downstairs Romance which was published in 1979. 

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