The Women of Rothschild

The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty

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Pub Date 25 Oct 2022 | Archive Date 07 Nov 2022

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Description

In The Women of Rothschild, Natalie Livingstone reveals the role of women in shaping the legacy of the famous Rothschild dynasty, synonymous with wealth and power.

From the East End of London to the Eastern seaboard of the United States, from Spitalfields to Scottish castles, from Bletchley Park to Buchenwald, and from the Vatican to Palestine, Natalie Livingstone follows the extraordinary lives of the Rothschild women from the dawn of the nineteenth century to the early years of the twenty-first.

As Jews in a Christian society and women in a deeply patriarchal family, they were outsiders. Excluded from the family bank, they forged their own distinct dynasty of daughters and nieces, mothers and aunts. They became influential hostesses and talented diplomats, choreographing electoral campaigns, advising prime ministers, advocating for social reform, and trading on the stock exchange. Misfits and conformists, conservatives and idealists, performers and introverts, they mixed with everyone from Queen Victoria to Chaim Weizmann, Rossini to Isaiah Berlin, and the Duke of Wellington to Alec Guinness, as well as with amphetamine-dealers, suffragists and avant-garde artists. Rothschild women helped bring down ghetto walls in early nineteenth-century Frankfurt, inspired some of the most remarkable cultural movements of the Victorian period, and in the mid-twentieth century burst into America, where they patronized Thelonious Monk and drag-raced through Manhattan with Miles Davis.

Absorbing and compulsive, The Women of Rothschild gives voice to the complicated, privileged, and gifted women whose vision and tenacity shaped history.

In The Women of Rothschild, Natalie Livingstone reveals the role of women in shaping the legacy of the famous Rothschild dynasty, synonymous with wealth and power.

From the East End of London to the...


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ISBN 9781250280190
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Featured Reviews

The Women of Rothschild: The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty by Natalie Livingstone is an in-depth look at the full lineage of the fascinating women of the Rothschild family.

This book is a full and all-encompassing look at all of the formidable, fascinating, and extensive list of women that have been part of this infamous family.

The author has clearly done her research and I am impressed and stunned by the amount of facts and material that she has presented. It at times was a bit mind-jumbling to try to keep all of it straight, but the author presents the material in appropriate and sensible ways to help the reader follow through.
Unfortunately with it not being available for kindle, I was unable to enlarge the lovely family tree images at the beginning, which is such a shame. It would have really added to the learning experience.

I enjoyed learning more about this family.

4/5 stars

Thank you NG and St. Martin’s Press for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.

I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts immediately upon publication on 7/26/22.

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I received an e-ARC version of this book from NetGalley and the publisher.

“The Women of Rothschild” by Natalie Livingstone is a very detailed book about the women of the Rothschild family.

Ms. Livingstone has obviously done her research and it showed in this book. While at times the information was dense (and I felt fortunate to have read a book about the first Mrs. Rothschild previously, so I knew her story and the first generation children going in), I felt that Ms. Livingstone did the best that she could both explaining and presenting the information. This was not a quick read book as there’s a lot of information packed into this book - so do take your time when reading. It was refreshing to learn more about the women of the Rothschild family - as the males are well known, but these Rothschild women are important in their own ways to the dynasty. I do wish that this book had been available for Kindle, as I could’ve then more easily read the book itself and enlarged the family tree in the beginning of the book.

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I enjoyed this look at these remarkedable women. And Jewish women at that. It' hard to believe they accomplished all they did in the time frame that they did.

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I've heard people say, we had a Rothchild in the family--- I've wondered if there was one in my own.. A big family and interesting always to read about the women behind the men.. Thanks for the early read.

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I enjoyed this nonfiction highlighting the women of the Rothschild dynasty. The historical research was interesting and well written for the reader to understand.

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The Women of Rothschild is a fascinating history of women's lives during the 19th,and 20th centuries. What is especially interesting is their transformation from absolute poverty to great wealth. Their Judaism is always present and alive in their lives. However, Judaism in a Christian world is often a hinderance that curtails progress, but that does not stop these women. Author Natalie Livingstone has given the Rothschild women a great deal of credit for the family's transformation from poverty to wealth. Livingstone creates a novel that is rich in small and big stories. It is never boring and is always interesting. However, I think having a genealogical map handy would be wonderful. The problem with ebooks is the inability to flip back to the front pages to look at the family map. I found that anytime I had to put the book down, that I needed a few refresher moments to sort through the women. I thought this history was fascinating and obviously carefully researched. I appreciate that the publisher provided this ARC for me to read. Receiving ARC to read is always nice, but it never influences my review. And thank you to NetGalley for introducing me to so many wonderful new authors.

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I loved this book. Natalie Livingstone tells great stories of the Rothschild women with lots of historical context. It is neither a paean nor a muckraking story. I feel that it is an objective look at these women, with their strengths and flaws. The book covers lots of ground so Livingstone doesn’t really linger over any particular stories. The writing is crisp and a pleasure to read. This book is well worth reading. Thank you to Netgalley and St. Martin's Press for the advance reader copy.

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Fascinating look at the Rothschild women through history.Strong women who contributed to their family their time in history.The author brought them alive I learned a lot about them.#netgalley #st.Martins

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I learned a lot from this book and did not know a ton regarding the Rothschild women in any generation. History has mostly focused on ensuring the men's stories are passed down and prominently featured in books, and I was surprised at the rich details surrounding the women in the Rothschild dynasty. I enjoyed the detail and vivid descriptions of the narrative and the focus on women dating back several hundred years. I'm impressed at how much detail Natalie Livingstone was able to fit in the book and it's clear she did extensive research and preparation for the book.

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I thought The Women of Rothschild: The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty was an interesting read. I give it three stars.

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This was an interesting read. It was a part of American history I was not familiar with. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an early read.

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You not only get the history of the Rothschild women but of Jewish history as well. These women were the real backbone and driving force of the family. Politics, art, charities and education are just some of the areas these women excelled. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

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What amazing research and intriguing writing!
Huge appreciation to NetGalley and publishers for allowing me to get an ARC of this research.

It is interesting, that only by reading this work, I realize that despite a vast amount of literature and research on the dynasty of Rothschild, we always read and concentrate on the founder of the dynasty and all the decisions his male descendants made. Surely, times and values were different and most of the time women, who were raised and stood by men were very much in the shadow, given their roles, but especially in Jewish culture, the role of the mother, amma of the family, is pretty heavy. Which is tried to be portrayed in this work.
The women of Rothschild managed to create a spirit and inspire their husbands/sons, help them in their way from poverty to absolute world power, and managed to keep values, beliefs, and religion in their lives.

An absolute must-read for anyone interested in the history of Rothschilds, 19-20 century history, why not feminist movement.

An easy and pretty fascinating read!

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The Women of Rothschild
The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty
by Natalie Livingston

I am a bit of a conspiracy theorist so the chance for a deep look into the Rothchild's was definitely an exciting prospect for me.

It was really an enigmatic look into the building of an empire into a world of wealth that seemingly ignores what the women in the family accomplish. Interesting really considering they were used a lot in the banking world as what the men considered, free labor.

Even since the very start the family have been entrepreneurs and widely independent. They have had their fingers in many pies over the centuries and seeing just where these women fit has really been quite interesting. The fact that they accomplished what they accomplished back then, during a time where Jews were treated like vermin, is actually quite inspiring.

The clause in Mayer’s will must have been heartbreaking for his daughters but I bet it didn’t come as any real surprise.

It was really quite an insightful read. I had no idea of the inner workings of the earlier Rothchild’s and how independent and savvy a lot of the women were. I would love to know more to be honest, about the family. I felt this book, while well researched, opened up a rabbit hole for me now. I have questions.

It was a little spiritless, I felt the tone was a little one dimensional. I felt it could have done with tonality and a little personality into the writing but that might be just me. It could have been a lot more gripping of a read with a little color.

The author did a lot of research and it was stitched together very well. It was a very pragmatic approach for providing the history.

Definitely worth the read and if you have an interest in the Rothchild's or are a conspiracy theorist like me, this is one for your shelves.

Thank you Netgalley and St Martin's Press for my ARC copy in exchange for my honest review.

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The Women of Rothschild is an engrossing, engaging and utterly compelling personal look into the lives of the Rothschild women from the time of founding father Mayer Amschel Rothschild and his wife Gutle in the 18th century through the French Revolution to the world wars to recent times. Talk about a brilliant book! The sheer amount of information presented is astounding. Natalie Livingstone meticulously researched and along with photographs, family tree and vivid descriptions tells the story of the women in particular, the parts they played and their roles of the times. Some of them were fiercely independent and bucked social norms; some were traditional. The family was known as the "Jewish Royal Family", living in the difficult world where Jews were slandered and treated abysmally. But over time the women raised their children to blend with Christians. Their name was connected with Disraeli, Gladstone, P. T. Barnum and Tom Thumb as well as Queen Victoria and the wealthy London set.

Not only does Livingstone describe personal details such as feelings toward Judaism, finance, childbirth, medical conditions and treatment of the time, death and sorrow (one death from a boil) but also luxurious homes and hosting majestic balls. Weddings, marriages and child-rearing are described, amongst the most fascinating information in the book in my opinion. Rothschilds were fodder for cartoon satires and wrote fascinating wills which often slighted the women. The women's personalities are as varied as can be in a family. Learning about what drove them politically, socially, religiously and personally was such a pleasure.

If you are even slightly intrigued by this family, do read this book. It is lengthy but riddled with interesting stories which makes me feel smarter. Well worth reading.

My sincere thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for the privilege of reading this riveting and fabulous book. I enjoyed it tremendously!

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The second I saw this book I knew I had to read it. I adore history, especially female centered history. This book has incredibly stories about the Rothschilds. It's a wonderul plot following the real life rise of the family.

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I found this to be an infinitely interesting book, about a world-famous family who, over the centuries, has made its mark in finance, art, culture, and religion. However, this book speaks of the Rothschild women as opposed to the men in the family, and the marks they made, not only in their own families, but to society as a whole. As the decades passes and women became more able to speak their minds and follow their own interests, so did these women, and the world is a better place for them.

My thanks to NetGalley for a digital ARC of this book; all opinions are my own.

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This book gives the history of the Rothschild family through the lens of certain of the women members. I found this book to be full of interesting anecdotes and facts from the lives of the women chosen. It particularly drove home for me the “closeness” of history- what we consider historical was really just a few generations removed, and the changes witnessed in the time period covered were remarkable. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in European history or well-known women.

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This book was so interesting and thereby researched. Women, wow. Natalie Livingstone reveals the role of women in shaping the legacy of the famous Rothschild dynasty. What a great read.

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I really didn't know anything about the Rothschild dynasty, so this was a treat for me. I always enjoy learning about people and thought this was a really well done book. I could tell the book was well-researched and Natalie Livingstone kept me entertained throughout. I look forward to reading more from Natalie Livingstone, as I enjoyed reading this book.

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The Women of Rothschild is a very well researched and detailed history of the Rothschild wives, mothers and daughters. It shows the history of the various times in history including the founding of Israel and Great Britain's role. It can be a heavy slog but interesting, nonetheless

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There is much information about these amazing women. Interesting but dense information. History from a female perspective is one that should be shown more. It gives the reader new ways to view the past.

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This ARC was provided to me via Kindle, from St. Martin's Press and #NetGalley. Thank you for the opportunity to preview and review. Opinions expressed are completely my own.

A remarkable book about fascinating women. Natalie Livinstone obviously did the research as this is a beautiful, well done history of a well regarded family.

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The Women of Rothschild by Natalie Livingston is an immensely readable, well documented history of the contributions made by the female members of the family. From its early 19th century beginning in the Frankfurt ghetto through the beginning of the 21 century readers experience a unique story not only of the ever expanding family but how they adapted to what was happening in the world at the time. It’s a story about subjugation to liberation to recognition that should resonate with all students of history. I voluntarily reviewed an advance copy of this book from NetGalley. Most highly recommend.

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I love nonfiction historical books. This one reads like it’s actually fiction it’s so interesting. I couldn’t wait to finish and then I started reading it again.

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The Rothschilds are a dynasty eponymous for wealth, but the women of the family have been long relegated to the shadows of history despite their major influence on English culture and society in their time.

The only thing I knew about the Rothschilds before reading this book was the myth about Nathan Rothschild making a treacherous fortune on the news of Waterloo. I had not considered the women of this family at all - which really is a shame, considering how fascinating they are.

In this book, Livingstone traces the lives of the Rothschild women who lived in England - the descendants of Nathan Mayer, who was one of the five brothers who established the family bank as an international entity. The women led fascinating lives, involving themselves in politics, charity, science, and even the family business despite a generation-long edict against female involvement. Despite the plethora of people discussed in the book, they were easy to tell apart due to the way the author strongly established their personalities.

However, the timeline of the book occasionally became confusing as we moved back and forth between the women being profiled in the different sections. I was also really disappointed that, after the level of detail in the first half of the book, some of the women in Parts III and IV were barely touched upon, though I am aware that this may have been due to the destruction of family papers that Livingstone referenced a few times throughout the book.

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The Women of Rothschild
By Natalie Livingstone

The story of the Rothschild family of German Jews, which grew to be the pre-eminent banking family throughout Europe, has been told many times. This book goes beyond the male Rothschild line and tells the story of the remarkable women – whether born Rothschild or married into the family – who worked behind the scenes to support their husbands' enterprises. But more than promoting the family business, these women became patrons of the arts, philanthropists, and shrewd politicians. They were wives and mothers – but most of all, they were women in an age where women were supposed to be decorative and subservient to their husbands' wants and needs.

These women were not perfect. Several married outside their religion which was anathema to their more conservative relatives. They did not always like and respect their various aunts, uncles, and cousins. But they worked hard to gain respect for the Rothschild name and family.

This is an interesting peek behind the male dominated façade of a powerful family and the women who made it strong.

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Although this is not the type of book that makes up the bulk of my reading, I was offered a chance to read an advance copy, and I am glad that I decided to do it! This is a comprehensive account of many of the women who were part of the famous Rothschild dynasty, women whose role in the development and growth of this family was an enormous one, as they were extremely influential in a variety of ways.

This historical tome is very well-written, and I applaud the author for the meticulous research she has done. All in all, this was an enjoyable read and a fascinating look at the women who were a part of this iconic family.

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Absolutely fascinating story of the individuals in the Rothschild family who had more power than we knew. I only wish their independence and individuality shone through a bit more.

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I absolutely LOVE this type of book and it’s the type of book I absolutely struggle with.
So many names places and facts thrown out my brain starts to feel like mush.
Very worth the read - strong independent women navigating a man’s world (AND family) - this book is full of gripping and enthralling stories. Sometimes my brain just got distracted by minutiae instead of enjoying the tale so I would have to double back. This it took me longer than my average read, required a bit more concentration and focus. I may have taken a few extra reading breaks and a bit more time but I never doubted that I would soon pick it back up and dive back in.

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This was a unusual read for me, but I’m so glad I gave it a chance - it’s such an interesting book. The author draws on extensive research to craft the stories of the women of this formidable family - the roles they played (both outwardly and behind-the-scenes), the choices they made, and the endless ways they furthered the rise of this famous family. The writing is approachable and captivated my attention; the author has a particular gift for noting small details that help each scene come alive. If you’re looking for an unexpected and inspiring read about real-life women overcoming odds large and small, this is a great choice.

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing a copy of this book.

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A look into the empire of the Rothschild women. The author did intense and well done research for this book. It is written on every page. Thank you NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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About the only thing I knew about the Rothschild family when I started this book was that they were rich. Very, very rich. To be honest, I'd never thought about how they got that way. This book tells us and, wow, it wasn't easy. It was even harder for the women of the family given the blatant sexist attitudes of the time Gutle Snapper married Mayer Amschel Rothschild in 1770. I won't even attempt to summarize this book as it contains exhaustive research and reaches into the early 2000s, so would direct you to the book blurb for more specific bits of info within.

I have to also admit that I was expecting a drier, more scholarly read. Thank goodness I was wrong about that. Yes, it's long, but it also focuses on the people and how they reacted to events, not just the events of their lives. And, what amazing lives they lived. From Gutle's days in the surely claustrophobic confines of the Judengasse, a narrow, shadowy, crowded stretch of land on the east side of Frankfurt where Jews were basically confined (and forced to pay), to Miriam in more modern times as she moves about the world, they had an impact upon not just the family but the world. Let's just say, modern Israel owes the Rothschild family.

It was interesting to see how each generation moved within the norms of the time, from Gutle's days when Mayer's will cut her and his daughters out of his inheritance and basically turned over their well-being to their brothers, to Miriam's world which spanned the resistance movement of WWII into more modern times as a respected scientist and benefactor. Famous faces make an appearance, all of which kept me busy aligning my own knowledge of the time (being a history major helped) to movies given appearances by Clark Gable and Alec Guinness.

Bottom line, there's a great deal to take in from this book and I'll admit to reading it in bits and pieces and, gasp, yes, even skimming sections at times. I also spent some time going back and forth from the index to the topic listed to make sure I hadn't missed anything, wishing I had the time to read the lengthy list of articles and citations at the end. Admittedly, this isn't a book for everyone, making it difficult to rate, but if you love history, are intrigued at the idea of a woman's place in historic events, or are just simply curious about how this one family that began in dire poverty not only survived but thrived, give it a read. Yes, it's long but, hey, no one said you have to read it in one day.

Thanks #NetGalley and #StMartinsPress for opening my eyes to not only a fascinating family and the role of its women throughout history but introducing me to some bits of history that I had only a passing knowledge of. Kudos to author #NatalieLivingstone for making that possible.

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In “The Women of Rothschild, the Untold Story of the World’s Most Famous Dynasty,” author Natalie Livingstone explores multiple generations of Rothschild women, both those born into the dynasty and those who married into it. Starting in 1753 with Gutle Rothschild, the family matriarch and mother of the five sons that would form the basis for the worldwide Rothschild family, the book covers many historical events and their impact on the Rothschild women and the Rothschild women’s impact on those same historical events. Wars, political movements, and domestic crises are just some of the areas covered by this book, which concludes with the twentieth century and twenty-first century Rothschild women.

Through Livingstone’s beautiful writing style and extensive research into private letters, diaries and family memoirs, the author brings each woman to vivid life. She details their contributions to politics, science and culture, as well as their interpersonal relationships with various family members. My only quibble with the book was that the lengthy period covered made it difficult at times to remember each individual and her relationship within the family. Although a genealogical chart was provided in the beginning of the book to help identify the women in relation to the family, it is difficult to read the chart in the ebook format as opposed to a print edition. However, as mentioned previously, the author’s meticulous research and almost poetic language made up for this minor annoyance. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the Rothschilds, Jewish history and women’s impact on historical events.

(Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing me an ARC copy of the book in exchange for my honest review).

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The Women of Rothschild is a meticulously researched and well written nonfiction book, in the tales Ms. Livingstone presents about the women in the iconic Rothschild family. The men’s stories have lived on for many years, but the womens’ were lost to history due to familial and societal misogyny. The author has given the female Rotschilds voice in this title.

Spending time reading this, and learning about these women was fascinating.

Recommended.

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As I read this title, I was in wonder at how much research had clearly gone into it by the author. The Rothschild men are often told about in history, but their wives, daughters, etc are so often neglected to ve mentioned at all. This remedies quite a bit of that, beginning with the tale of the group matriarch, Gutle. As her family expands, you'll see how her children, and so on, become successful in banking, entertaining heads of state and royalty, and moving all around as their husbands get further into their own businesses. Behind every good man stands a good woman, and I recommend the stories of these incredible women!

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My thanks to Net Galley and St Martin's for the invitation to read this very interesting and well researched book. I thought it a bit slow in parts but fascinating stories of the women behind all the men.

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An amazing read. A must read for anyone interested in the lost stories of women throughout the ages. It a beautiful book to give as a gift.

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What fascinating women this story describes! I've read a few pieces about the Rothschild family over the years and am continually amazed at the breath and depth of the family's involvement in so many arenas - and across so many generations. The writing is very detailed, offering narrative about not only the family but the worlds in which it operated, and the wily way that the family members manipulated political, religious, and social events to continue to thrive was magnificent to watch unfold.

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Absolutely engrossing book about all these women from the Rothschild family. The author traces the family roots from Gutle - the matriarch - through her daughters, daughters-in-law, granddaughters and more, right up to the present day.

I learned not only about the family but I was taken on a trip through European history from the 1700s through close to present times, as not only seen but also influenced by these amazing women. They were involved in so many social and political movements especially in the late 1800's into the 1940's (all the big movements of those times to include rights of women and children, workers, recognizing Jews as citizens, and even the creation of the independent state of Israel).

If you love biographies or history, you will love this book. I would even venture that if you love historical fiction, you'd also love this book because it reads like unbelievable (yet true) stories!

This would make an excellent book club pick!

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Unfortunately I wasn’t able to finish this as 1- it was only on the NetGalley shelf which isn’t a convenient way for me to read and 2- it timed out on the shelf. I still look forward to reading this better in the future.

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This book offers an interesting look at the history of the Rothschild family, from it's humble beginnings to becoming the huge, well-known dynasty it now is. The author focuses on the women in the family, who, largely due to how strictly patriarchal the family is, have been kept from the spotlight when they're really the most interesting members of the family. The Rothschild women were not only deeply involved in the family's banking business, but also in various social causes. As a prominent Jewish family, the Rothschilds often felt that they needed to use their position to assist others, causing them to flock to causes like funding Jewish schools. I thought it was interesting to hear about everything they did, I had not idea the family was as far-reaching as they are, though I did think that the author focuses too much on the British branches of the family, despite the family getting its start in Germany. I also think that the discussion of Zionism, which is complex and has greatly changed over time, needed to be much more detailed and nuanced, given how involved the family was in the movement (on both sides).

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Natalie Livingstone’s The Women of Rothschild is a sweeping, multi-general history of the English branch of Rothschild women. She begins her story in Frankfurt with family matriarch Gutle, and then focuses primarily on the female descendants on Nathan and Henriette, who moved to England. The book spans multiple centuries and six generations of women, and it is fascinating to see both the different people and historical events that these women met and were a part of. It also shows the evolving transition of the women in the family. Outrightly denied the right to participate in the banking legacy of the Rothschild family by patriarch Amschel, the women go from being almost purely homemakers, serving as mothers and wives with occasional assistance in the family business, to actively making financial decisions, to patrons of arts, culture and philanthropy, to women with careers and pursuits of their own. Also evolving throughout the story is the family’s dedication to Judaism. With the earlier generations, marrying outside religion can essentially lead to excommunication, whereas the later generations become increasingly ambivalent to being Jewish, despite members of the family being prominent in role of establishing Israel. It’s quite amazing to see the transformation between Gutle, who grew up in the ghetto and lives her life primarily as a devout homemaker, to Miriam an heir worth millions that forges her own career as an entomologist who wins respect in her industry and country for her work. And as much historical documentation excluded the history of women, regarding only the work of Rothschild men as important, Livingstone has done an admiral job of researching and pulling together historical information about the women – proceeded by several Rothschild women who decided to speak up and share their stories and perspectives themselves. Through no fault of the author, following along can get confusing; many of the women, especially in the earlier generations, have the same names and there is quite a bit of marrying within the family. The reader will have to try and keep multiple Hannahs, Louises, and Emmas straight (as well as Amschels, Nats, James, etc.) as they follow along. It’s worth it though; the history is fascinating and shows through one family the changing tides of religion and women’s rights and how people attitudes towards both have changed over time. This story is worth reading both for a previously limited perspective on the women of one of the most well-known families in Europe in the last few hundred years, and for seeing the evolution of beliefs and roles adapt and change across multiple generations of women within the same family. A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Very detailed book about the Rothschild Women. I never heard of them before reading this book. Mainly focuses on them prior to 1900 and mainly in England. If you want a long and detailed history of these women, this is the book for you. If you don't, skip it.

Thank you Netgalley for an ARC

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As someone who knew nothing about the Rothschild, I recommend this. If you have a lot of knowledge you maybe a bit disappointed.

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This was a well-written, well-researched dive into the mostly hidden lives of the women behind the Rothschild family. Since that could cover such an enormous spread, author Natalie Livingstone restricted herself to the English branch of the family. It was fascinating to watch the changes in social, religious, and political life as the Rothschild women experienced (and influenced) it across the 19th and 20th centuries. There were definitely times you wished there remained more evidence of personal feelings or thoughts- as political hostesses how did these women bear it when they had to politely invite openly anti-Semitic MPs to their dinners and sit there listening to them talk? But it turns out most Rothschild women edited their own diaries and thoughts- whether with an eye to what their husbands or future generations might think if they read it who knows? (which in itself is interesting to me).

From politicians like the Duke of Wellington to Disraeli and Queen Victoria to jazz artists like Charlie Parker and Thelonius Monk, Rothschild women knew some of the most influential men and women of their age- in every age. They took up causes, both social, religious, and political, and often made major differences along the way. From naturalist Miriam Rothschild to matriarch Gutle Rothschild, this is a book about women-real women with strengths and flaws, doubts and beliefs, supporting their families and their causes, and showing how strong women moving in the shadows of a male dominated world could be.

I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

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With the exception of Gutle, the foundress, Rothschild women in the past never received the recognition they deserved from the men in the family. Baby boys were favored. It is through writers like Natalie Livingstone that we learn of their legacy. From the beginning their involvement in life reflects the historic events of their day. They immerse themselves in the family company and establish institutions. Much time and effort is involved in matchmaking, not necessarily involving love. The decision to “marry out” for love or “marry in” to a loveless relationship has to be made. The women’s philosophies fall on both liberal and conservative sides. Earlier on this is reflected in hosting skills; later in actual involvement. They are friends of prime ministers and royals. They witness the election of the first Jew to the House of Commons, a family member. Many have strong social consciences, working for causes. They live through political movements, social unrest, marrying and raising children, always demonstrating interest in science and the arts and their advancement. Their common bond is their strength, intelligence and endurance.

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I received an advance reading copy (arc) of this book from the publisher and NetGalley.com in return for a fair review. Going into this book, I knew very little about the Rothschild Family other than they were very rich! I understand that much has been written about the Rothschild men who were responsible for one of the most legendary banking dynasties in Europe. Begun in Frankfurt, Germany by Mayer Amschel Rothschild in the 1700s, much has been written about Mayer Amschel and his male descendants, but the women have been overlooked. Author Natalie Livingstone has changed all that by writing this book and focusing on the Rothschild ladies starting with Mayer Amschel's wife, Gutle. She was instrumental in her husband's success all while raising a family (19 pregnancies with 10 children surviving to adulthood) and running a household. Known for being frugal, she was smart and cunning, but never got the recognition she deserved. Her husband even excluded all female family members from their banking business in his will. Gutle's son, Nathan, settled in England and married Hannah Barent Cohen. Hannah became his equal and unofficial business partner. While he continued his father's legacy of excluding the ladies, he also instructed his sons to consult their mother when making any complex business decisions. The wealthy couple hobnobbed with royalty, raised their own family, and lived lavishly. Livingstone goes on to detail the lives of several generations of Rothschild women all the way through to modern times. It is a fascinating look at a fascinating family. My only complaint was the myriad of characters introduced. I had a hard time keeping up with who's who. The book is well-researched and well-written and one thing's for sure...there is never a dull moment or a dull character!

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A well researched tour de force of the women in the Rothschild family tree, whether the name was assumed on marriage or acquired at birth from the mid 1700s into the 20th century. Despite the strictures of living in an 18th century ghetto, from the beginning the women were not so different from now, whether rich or poor, working hard despite prohibitions, intellectually stimulated, active personalities unwilling to be limited by social pressures or anti-Semitic actions. A fascinating examination of 200 years of ‘female scribblers’ whose writings have been preserved even though their presence wasn’t noted in the histories written.

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I love historical fiction, historical nonfiction is even better. Here we have the many generations of the Rothschild women. No money or titles till they take for themselves. It has always amazed me how in History so many societies treat women and children as nothing more than creatures to have underfoot. Without women, there would be no children, no clean clothes, no food.....no reason to come home from war. And in the higher ranks of social climbers, if there were no women, there would be no balls, no banquets, no corsets cinched tight to distract the man from his political conversations.
The Rothschild women knew this. They knew there was more than religion and politics yet, the women of this family for generations knew those sectors needed to get along to push things forward. They whispered their ideas into their husband's ears at night, a slight suggestion to make events go in the right direction. Marriages were arranged to advance both sons and daughters.
The Dynasty we think of is the Rockefellers or the Kennedys but first, there were the Rothschilds and the women were secretly running the show.
A powerhouse of a book.

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This was an interesting book about a history that I did not know about! I've vaguely heard about the Rothschild family, mainly in passing in historical documentaries. It is great that there is a book now, focusing on women in history! I love reading historical books about women and their mark on the times they lived in and the paths they forged. Nathalie Livingstone does a great job in the research and depth of the women she chronicles. It was clear and well-written and engaging. I hope there is a follow-up documentary one day!
The research is interesting and well developed, if I had one issue it was that there was a lot of women chronicled, and it was hard to keep track! I have found this in a couple of other non-fiction history books that I've read recently also, so maybe it is forces beyond the historians control. Regardless, I greatly enjoyed this look into a family of notable women and their impact on the world!
I received The Women of Rothschild as an ARC from Netgalley for my honest opinion. If you are interested in European history or women in history, this is an interesting topic to read!

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I found this book slow reading at first, not because of the book but because the author honestly described the ignorance of several generations of Rothchild men. I find myself wondering how they could be so good at making money but could appreciate the contributions of their female family members. Those women not only took care of the home, they complimented them in business as well. Yet the patriarchs took all the credit and considered only the males as suitable enough to inherit.

This book has a rich history of generations of Rothchild women and their accomplishments. The descriptions of their personalities brought them to life on the pages. I truly hope there are even greater generations of Rothchild women to come. Although I don't agree with all their hopes and causes, I respect their energy and stubborn determination.

I certainly thank Netgalley.com and the publishers for allowing me to review this book for my honest opinion.

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Thank you to NetGalley, the author Natalie Livingstone and publisher St. Martin's Press for the advanced copy of this terrific novel.

There was so much information! Some of it was very dense and some lighthearted. I loved that there was an ancestral chart in the beginning. It was hard to figure out since I was reading on my kindle.

I pre-ordered a copy so that I can thoroughly enjoy it and be able to flip back and forth.

I will update my review once I finish the hard copy.

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This is a very dense history book, and as per the author's notes, mostly concerns the women of the British branch of the family, and I would add, particularly in the more modern years of the 20th and 21st centuries, with a little French and German parts of the family thrown in for visits, matchmaking and weddings and family gatherings. The information about the women could not be presented without about half of the text relating to the male figures, so my initial expectations about the book differed from that actual text. This work certainly involved a lot of research and dedication, and provides an interesting addition to women's history. Having completed this book, I kind of wonder about the women in the other branches of the family in the other parts of Europe and wherever else they lived.

The Rothschild women were often advisors and partners of their husbands, even though, they were specifically left out of family businesses by the founder Mayer Amschel Rothschild. With their name, wealth, and connections, the women played significant roles in the march of political, economic, geopolitical, social and artistic history. The wealth and business did not necessarily shield them from the anti-Semitic nature of the world, from sickness, early death, unhappy marriages and lives, and many misfortunes. As the family grew and spread, beyond the original generations of the founders, Mayer and Gutle, and their five sons, and became more integrated into general culture, it seems to me, they became unmoored from the original moral boundaries, with some major exceptions. Perhaps the fact that so many cousins married each other through the generations, there may have been a genetic component to mental and physical health issues that many faced.

I am not sure I would have completed this book if I had not won it in the giveaway and had a personal commitment to review it. It certainly is the kind of book that I most like to read, and I am glad that I finished it. Not all of the pursuits were so interesting to me, so there was room for some skimming. It was challenging to keep up with all of the names and relationships, particularly as many of the names were used many times through out the 250 years covered in this history.

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A fascinating history of one of the world's most financially successful families, the Rothschilds -- but focusing on the mostly unknown or ignored female members. Much as been written about the banking achievement of the men, but this detailed and lengthy story tells about the mothers, daughters and sisters who were successful in their own right.

The story picks up in the mid 18th century and follows the different branches of the family as they expand their business across Europe. They were both a close family and often a contentious one, with feuds and rivalries complicating their relationships.

I found this tale to be mostly absorbing, particularly as we reach modern times. Tied up in the women's accomplishments was the story of the family's Jewish identity and different members' long struggles to achieve political and societal equality. The author is clear that this family had unimaginable financial resources at their disposal and privilege galore.

Thanks to the publisher and to Net Galley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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Considering how little has been written about the Rothschild women, this book was long overdue. So rich in history and presented in an engaging manner. I am glad to have read this book; courtesy of NetGalley. It was time well spent.

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As Jews in a Christian society and women in a deeply patriarchal family, they were outsiders. Excluded from the family bank by their patriach's will, they forged their own distinct dynasty of daughters and nieces, mothers and aunts. They became influential hostesses and talented diplomats, choreographed electoral campaigns, advised prime ministers, and advocated for social reform, and traded on the stock exchange. They mixed with everyone from Queen Victoria to Chaim Weizmann, Rossini to Isaiah Berlin, and the Duke of Wellington to Alec Guinness, as well as with amphetamine-dealers, suffragists and avant-garde artists. Rothschild women helped bring down ghetto walls in early nineteenth-century Frankfurt, inspired some of the most remarkable cultural movements of the Victorian period, and in the mid-twentieth century burst into America, where they patronized Thelonious Monk and drag-raced through Manhattan with Miles Davis.

I was intrigued by this book having heard of the Rothschild's but not knowing much about their history. I did get confused many times with all the names, intermarriages, and the same name multiple times. In the e-book format, the geneaology in the front of the book was too small to be of use and hopefully, the one in the book is better because it would be a big help to sort everyone out. That being said, the women were fascinating to read about and see what they accomplished even though the patriarch of the family denied them access to the banking aspect of the family (which I did not know). The women through the two centuries that were mostly covered were very successful in their own right and accomplish much. Be prepared for a VERY long book, but stick with it as it is very informative and obviously very well researched with all the notes at the end as proof. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for granting my request to read this book. I recommend in to anyone interested in history, especially women's history.

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Fascinating well researched book about women who have been largely overlooked as part of the Rothschild dynasty because they were, well, women. While the early chapters might feel a bit dense, keep going because Livingstone does make them come to life. There's an argument to be made for reading this in hard copy vice kindle so that you can refer to the large and helpful family tree. Thanks to netgalley for the ARC. It's a great read.

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Natalie Livingstone’s The Women of Rothschild: The Untold Story of the World’s Most Famous Dynasty is a must-read book for everyone interested in the famous banking family or in women’s history. As Livingstone points out in her introduction, many writers have focused on the Rothschild men, but this is the first detailed study of the women behind the men.

Opening with Gutle Schapper’s 1753 birth, Livingstone describes the rigid boundaries of 18th Jewish life in Frankfurt, Germany. She paints a vivid picture of the dark, smokey air and confined space within the Judengasse (Jew’s Lane) ghetto near the slaughterhouse. The daughter of a banker, Gutle learned the banking business, and her family made a marriage match for her to Mayer Amschel Rothschild, who had also learned the banking business and whose surname came from the Rotes Schild (Red Shield), the name of the house built by a 16th century Judengasse ancestor. While raising a large family, Gutle also played an active role in the family business, children gradually scattering to England, France, Italy, and elsewhere.

Filled with stories of the Rothschild women, whether of those born as Rothschilds or those becoming Rothschilds by marriage, The Women of Rothschild points out the men’s frequent disdain for the women, relates the Rothschild brothers scheming to marry off twenty-three-year-old sister Henriette before she became a grey-haired old maid, describes Nathan Rothschild’s London wife’s lavish parties that were “as much about business as pleasure” as she entertained politicians , both British and foreign, and donated to charities, attracting interest of the press and quickly making the Rothschild name the most famous among British Jews.

The stories progress through branches and generations of the family. While the Rothschilds may have been known for banking, Livingstone demonstrates how the women, largely ignored by history and Christian society, expanded the family influence into other areas, such as education, politics, zoology, horticulture, sports, various fine arts, and women’s rights.

Natalie Livingstone’s extensive research has resulted in a fresh and informative look at one of the world’s most famous families. The Women of Rothschild is both scholarly and entertaining. In short, it is well worth reading.
My thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for an advance reader copy of this interesting and informative biographical history.

I have shared this review on Goodreads and will share it on Barnes and Noble after the release date.

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The name Rothschild is known around the world. Its association with banking, wealth, and the aristocracy go hand in hand. This book, The Women of Rothschild, is an in-depth and fascinating look into the women behind the men of the Rothschild’s dynasty. Spanning over 250 years, Ms. Livingston’s work introduces us to generations of women within the dynasty, and shares their personal achievements and successes alongside their influence on the wealth and stature of the family.

The book starts with Gulte Rothschild, the original matriarch of the family. From the Jewish Ghetto of Frankfurt, her five sons would spread out across Europe and gave birth to the banking empire. There isn’t a part of history for the past 250 years that the Rothschilds haven’t been a part of. From the Napoleonic wars to Bletchley Park, from British Royalty and Prime Minsters to the creation of a Jewish Homeland in Palestine, and everything in between. This well researched tome is filled with how these women from a privileged and wealthy family helped to shape the course of history.

It did seem that the history thinned out after WWI, and even more after WWII. Also, an interesting note is that the one place the Rothschilds failed to have large impact on was the US. I highly recommend this book for history lovers, especially women’s history. In and age when women were not given the same education as men, and were expected to stay at home and raise children, the Rothschild women proved that not only were they capable to achieve success in the world of finance, they did so with the support of their fathers and husbands and all while managing the household.

I received an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. Thank you to NetGalley, the publishers, and the author.

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The Women of Rothschild is a detailed, In-depth, meticulously researched, steeped in history look at the women of the Rothschild family, beginning with the mother of the Rothschild dynasty, Gutle Schnapper, who was born in a German Jewish ghetto in 1753. Rothchild women were (are) strong, competent and capable, beginning with Gutle and continuing through the line, both those women born into the family and those who married into it. They have been intentionally and systemically marginalized, pushed aside, excluded from decision making and overt power, purposely omitted from wills, or if anything was left to them it was under the control of a male member of the family. They were expected to contribute to the family business but behind the scenes, not speaking out, not taking credit, knowing their place. I don’t know what the author had in mind, but for me the common theme was not that the Rothschild women achieved remarkable things, but that their achievements were in spite of the way they were shut out. My takeaway was frustration at this way of life and a not very favorable impression of the Rothschild men.

The book is well written and easy to read, although very long and so full of dates, places and transactions naturally centered around world events and the men that it seems more like a general history of this famous, rich family with the women just a part of it, rather than the celebration of the accomplishments of these women. In fact, their achievements were overlooked, their ideas uncredited and their potential untapped. Without the extraordinary efforts of author Natalie Livingstone and others like her we wouldn’t even be aware of what the Rothschild women did and continue to do.

Thanks to St. Martin’s Press for providing an advance copy of The Women of Rothschild in exchange for my honest review. Although it wasn’t really what I expected it was still an enjoyable read. All opinions are my own.

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

"The Women of Rothschild" by Natalie Livingstone was a fascinating look at the women of the Rothschild family. Although I was familiar with several of the men from this financial/political dynasty, I did not know anything about the female members of the family prior to reading this book. The Rothschild women are a unique and strong-willed group, and I enjoyed how the author took us through their lives and the impacts they had on the family, their social and political circles, and especially the arts. It was fun to read about their interactions with and influence on historical figures from music, art, and science. If you are interested in family or social histories, this is a great book to pick up!

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Excellent research source for many areas of interest.
Would I have chosen this book if I came across it on a shelf? No.
Did I thoroughly enjoy this book? Yes
Would I have LOVED to have this book in college for a few of my research papers? Absolutely.
This book has offered itself as an amazing secondary source for so many areas of research and interest – women’s history, Jewish history, Jewish women in the world, Jewish women in business, women in business, European history across many decades, sociology and the evolution of women’s existence in the world, and so much more.
While focusing on one particular, notorious family, this book also provides pivotal information about the world around these women and how the world impacted them and how they impacted the world.

A fascinating look into how “family” can help and/or hinder.
While the book does provide insight into the world, politics, business, sociology, and more over decades of modern history, it also provides thoughtful and impactful look into the lives of several women who were affected in various ways. This book really shows how your family can both hold you back (through explicitly denying you a place through a will) but also help you to soar and reach unimaginable goals (through your name, family connections, financial support, education, emotional support, and a firm foundation). Sometimes those truths exist at the same time.

Captivating secondary source filled with research gems about these remarkable women of this notorious family.
Stars 4
Would I Recommend? Yes

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If you are a history buff, The Women of Rothschild is a book to savor! Natalie Livingstone has sure done her homework! Unfortunately, I struggled with the book on Kindle, I could not enlarge the Family Tree. I also kept wanting to go to the Index and it was not yet included. Not to worry! I have ordered the hard copy so I can write in the book and actively use the Family Tree. My thanks to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for an ARC of this book. The opinions in this review are my own.

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The Women of Rothschild The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty by Natalie Livingstone reads like an epic novel...impressively researched and beautifully written. This is a rich history to dip in and out of–each generation of the tangled family tree provides Livingstone with fascinating women of wealth and influence who found important ways to defy the expectations of their era.

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The name Rothschild conjures up images of wealth. It was a patriarchal dynasty and little has been written about the women. Natalie Livingstone looks at the Rothschild women beginning with Gutli Schnapper, the mother of this dynasty, who married Mayer Amschel Rothschild in 1770. Gutli’s father was a banker who trained her to assist in his business, making her an ideal partner for Mayer. As the family grew their sons each became involved in the business and branched out to the financial capitals of Europe. When Mayer died, his will divided the company between his sons, denying any stocks or participation to the women of the family. Gutli was left a substantial fortune, but even that was controlled by her sons. The matches between the men and their spouses were more like business transactions. When Gutli’s youngest daughter Henrietta found love, her choice was unsuitable to the family and her brothers set out to find a husband that would be an advantageous match for the family business. The wives and sisters became hostesses and ran the families. Nathan Rothschild settled in England with his wife Hannah, who hosted parties for major politicians. Later Charlotte became the most popular hostess in London.

Gutli died in 1849 at the age of ninety-five, but the generations that followed involved themselves in politics, the arts and science. The women were always there to support their children and their husbands but their own support came from the other Rothschild women. They were Jewish families in areas dominated by Christian societies. They worked behind the scenes to be accepted in this environment. They were also involved in the women’s movement and were often known for their philanthropy. During WWI several of the women stepped up to assist the family business and WWII saw further involvement. There was a Rothschild woman at Bletchley Park and one who joined the Free French to serve with her husband in Africa. This is a family that experienced great wealth and weathered scandals. Nica Rothschild became involved in the jazz music scene and befriended Charlie “Bird” Parker, who died in her home, a death whose circumstances became sensationalized in the papers. Livingstone fills her pages with fascinating stories that take you from Frankfurt’s Judengasse, the strip of land set aside for the Jews, to the manors and stately homes in Europe, to America and also to Israel, which recognized several of the Rothschilds for their contributions. This is well written and highly recommended. I would like to thank NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing this book for my review.

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I received a copy of the Kindle ebook of this via NetGalley and all opinions are my own. My review will also be published today on my Goodreads account.

Natalie Livingstone has clearly done a lot of research in this volume containing multiple biographies of the women of the famous Rothschild banking family. She does a good job giving an overview of the English branch of the family, but as with books such as these, I don't pressure myself in remembering who everyone is, since there are so many members mentioned. Some of the women profiled do stand out, such as the witty Charlotte and outsider Blanche. With such a multitude, Livingstone does run into the problem of running out of steam towards the latter half of the book, which to me felt rushed in chronicling the lives of the later Rothschild women, and my eyes glazed over whenever politics was mentioned, but overall it's a good read.

4/5 stars

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The Fascinating Women of the Rothschild Family

Starting in extreme poverty, the family became one of the wealthiest in the world. The Rothschilds are often thought of in terms of the men of the dynasty who played major roles in finance and politics. Although not as well know, the women besides being talented hostesses, were active in politics and the arts working for social reform, being astute diplomats, and even advising prime ministers.

I found it fascinating to follow the rise of the family from the Judengrasse outside Frankfort where Jews were confined to the heights of power and society in Britain. This book concentrates on the family of Nathan, one of the five original brothers, who settled in Britain. It was particularly interesting to see how the status of women changed from the days in the ghetto where Gutie, the founding mother, was cut out of her husbands will and thrown on to the generosity of her five sons, to the status of women moving higher and higher as the family rose to prominence.

The book is very long, but I found it easy to read for the most part. There are some sections that drag, but they didn’t ruin the book for me. The scholarship is outstanding. If you’re a history enthusiast, this book is perfect for you. However, it can also be enjoyed as the story of a family of remarkable women.

I received this book from St. Martin’s Press for this review.

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The Untold Story of The World’s Most Famous Dynasty

In The Women of Rothschild, Natalie Livingstone reveals the role of women in shaping the legacy of the famous Rothschild dynasty, synonymous with wealth and power.

Natalie Livingstone has given us a look at the women of Rothschild and a very interesting look it is.

From England to the United States and literally, everywhere in between, these extraordinary women led lives that we both can and cannot relate to.

Even their name did not really belong to them. They were Jews in a time that meant they were also on the outside looking in. In ghettos and looked down on, they were fiercely determined to succeed. Unable to bank with the Christians, they built their own bank and the rest is history. Or so they say.

They worked hard for every success. From the dregs of society to hanging with queens, and politicians and advocating for reforms, and working within the stock exchange. The women helped bring down those ghettos in Frankfurt. They were inspiring. Then they came to the United States where they hung with artists, musicians, and politicians.

If you think they floated through life on a pampered pillow, don’t think that. They had the same problems that all women had in those times. They made bad decisions and had troubles.

There was so much research in this book and I loved every bit of it!

NetGalley/ October 25, 20022, St. Martin’s Press

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The Women of Rothschild The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty by Natalie Livingstone is Historical Non Fiction. The Rothchild‘s rise to fame and fortune. A tale of a family's journey led by the strength of women from a German ghetto to English mansions and places all over the world.
We follow the Rothchild family from discrimination and persecution to wealth, influence and power with predictable excess. We read of other family members descending into lifestyles that might have horrified previous generations. The Rothschild women’s story provides many life lessons of how our choices will determine our fate, influence others and may impact future generations.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. I appreciate the opportunity and thank the author and publisher for allowing me to read, enjoy and review this book. 5 Stars

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Being a fan of historical works - I was very excited to have the opportunity to read this book. However, when I first started reading the dry - only the facts - beginning of the book and the mere size almost overwhelmed me! I almost gave up - I'm so glad I didn't!

Very well researched and written this book tells a story that needed telling. I also like the way it was divided - by generations by names - not years. Made it more readable. Great story of the great women of history.

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THE WOMEN OF ROTHSCHILD: The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty
by Natalie Livingstone
St. Martin's Press
Out Oct 25


I learned so much about the Rothschild dynasty while reading Natalie Livingstone's intriguing history of its women. Jewish in a Christian world, the family started in extreme poverty and amassed great wealth over time. The author contends that the Rothschild women, while never able to work in the family's bank during the early 19th Century to the beginning of the 20th, were still influential in the rise of the family's social status as well as its gain in riches.

The extraordinary story gripped me as it moved from London to the U.S. Eastern seaboard, from Scotland to Bletchley, and from Buchenwald to the Vatican to Palestine.

Well-written and researched, The Women of Rothschild is highly recommended for history buffs and readers captivated by real life stories of influential women. Brava, Natalie!

Thanks to the author, St. Martin's Press, and NetGalley for the ARC. Opinions are mine.

#TheWomenOfRothschild #StMartinsPress#NatalieLivingstone #NetGalley #HistoryOfWorldsMostFamousDynasty #19thCenturyHistory #20thCenturyHistory #bookstagramcommunity

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The Introduction to The Women of Rothschild gives an extensive background to the historical story of the Rothschilds with a unique focus on the women of the family. Livingstone begins with the so called "founding father", Mayer Amschel Rothschild but the initial focal point is Gutle, his wife. The growth and social prominence of the multiple generations of the family is chronicled from the Frankfurt ghetto to London to Paris and beyond, as well as their ascent into British society - titles, royal licenses, etc. Livingstone paints a rich picture of life behind the curtains, and how fascinating she tells the tale, Don't miss this book - you won't regret it!

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The Women of Rothschild is a mesmerizing story about a Jewish family and their importance in history largely impacted by the daughters. In a time when women weren't given much responsibility other than having and raising children, the daughters were expected to help keep the books of the family business. As more children are born and raised in this family, they will make marriages in order to better the family's standing. After all the women have contributed to the business they are essentially cut out when Mayer Amschel Rothschild dies his will is implicit, the women are to get nothing, and they are to have no further dealings with the family business. This was a shock since they had been involved but it was a very common practice for men to handle the business in the family.

In spite of this the women were hugely influential hostesses and diplomats for the family as well as becoming involved with politics, advising prime ministers, social reform, and trading on the stock exchange. The women did not let Mayor's will stop them from continuing to being an important part to the family dynasty.

This book is wonderfully told with rich history and many details previously unknown. The beginnings of the marriage of Mayor and Gutle is so interesting of how they began their family in Frankfort which grew to many countries in Europe to the US. It is an extraordinary story of women for their contribution that have been overlooked in history.

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Thanks to the publisher , St. Martin's Press, for giving me the chance to review THE WOMEN OF ROTHSCHILD
by Natalie Livingstone.

Highly recommend this for fans of biographies and world history..

This non fiction novel gives rich details about the beginnings of the Rothschild dynasty and how they built their fortune.

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Natalie Livingstone's THE WOMEN OF ROTHSCHILD tackles the difficult task of spotlighting the women of an enormously influential (and rich) family--a family where the women were supposed to withdraw once they'd made impressive and consequential marriages.

Studded with rich historical tidbits and vivid portraits of a place and time, this is a meticulously crafted and fascinating portrait of generations of powerful women at a time when women were not supposed to be powerful. A compelling read.

Many thanks to St Martins and to Netgalley for the pleasure of the read.

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About four or five pages into the introduction, I was rolling my eyes and muttering, “Oh brother.” Here we go, another academic revisionist reviling of history’s events because the period in question doesn’t conform with today’s woke culture. You know, the cruelly treated and horribly abused women/minorities/non-English populations suffering unspeakable deprivation and torture at the hands of the white male patriarchy running-dog-lackeys of the capitalist imperialist class. In this case, Livingstone is outraged by the neglect and abuse the Rothschild women suffered at the hands of their eeevil husbands. Okay, fine, so I settled in to find out just how horrible things were for the Rothschild women. And, about four or five pages into the text, was going, “What the deuce?” because Livingstone completely disproves her own outrage.

The Rothschild women were wonderful, great people in their own right, very much appreciated by most of their male contemporaries and well known to the public, beginning with the matriarch of the Rothschild dynasty, Gutle Schnapper, who teamed up with her husband, Mayer Rothschild, to overcome the unbelievably horrific anti-semitism of 18th Century Frankfurt. That seems the better story than which side of the marriage bed should get the most credit for building the empire. Gutle had much to do with that, as did succeeding generations of Rothschild women and Livingstone does an outstanding job explaining how they did so. The women, that is. There’s not much mention of the men’s efforts so you really can’t compare.

And I’m not really sure you should. When I think of Rothschilds, I think of the family name, not the husbands or the wives or the kids or the family dog. Seems a combined effort, then, and who should get credit for what is an argument generally made between siblings.

By Victorian times, Rothschild women were ruling society, the papers following their every move. They were friends of prime ministers, hosting parties considered more important than those of royalty. They hung out with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and were heavily involved in politics and in building vast country estates with, I guess, some support from their husbands.

So what’s the complaint?

There really isn’t one. Livingstone keeps coming back to the original stipulation that Mayer invoked preventing any Rothschild women from direct involvement with the banking business. Which, in 18th Century Europe, with its murderous kings and rapacious ministers, was probably a good idea, unless the women could hold their own with sword and musket. Which some of them could, and a lot of the women got involved with the bank despite the prohibition. Rules are made to be broken, doncha know, especially the unwritten one that Rothschilds keep it in the family and so ended up marrying cousins, which, unfortunately, displays its results in later generations.

But you can’t publish an academic treatment these days unless you couch it in neo-Marxist analytical class warfare terms, so we have to raise the specter of wife abuse or this isn’t going to get past the slush pile. Which I’m glad this did, because it is an excellent book.

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I have been on a nonfiction kick recently and this one stood out for many reasons. I felt like I was in the moment with the author and I felt like the past was described in such a way that I could picture it without feeling like I was bogged down with details.

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I enjoyed learning about the fascinating and complicated women of this famous family.

The Women of Rothschild: The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty is densely packed with detailed information about the women of a very powerful family. This book is full of facts and information and is told in an interesting way that kept me engaged throughout.

I would recommend a hard copy of this book so you can enjoy the photos, illustrations, and flip back and forth to remember a forgotten item you previously read and missed.

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Thank you NetGalley for giving me this ARC. To be transparent, I did not finish this book. I have not had the time, but can I just say I am blown away by this Livingstone's research skills. I made it about 68% of the way through before life got in my way. The Women of Rothschild are the true backbone of their families and Livingstone begins with such great detail about a time I knew so little about, I really felt like I learned something new from this book. For those of you who are looking to learn the background of all the Rothschild, please pick this up. Also, Natalie if you read this, please let me in on your prep work process because I am impressed!

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The Women of Rothschild by N. Livingstone, published by St. Martin's Press is a lesson in history I didn't wanted to miss.
A fascinating glimpse into their world, mostly set in Europe and America; paints this book an intriguing picture, is witness to time and society, faith and social status.
An unputdownable read, 4,5 stars.

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Natalie Livingstone's history of the brilliant women of the extensive, world-spanning Rothschild clan is impeccably researched and gloriously readable. From the 1753 birth of Gutle, the original clan matriarch, into the women of the modern era family, we come to know these women's interests, talents, and roles played in their political and economic times. What a story! And all true.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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The Women of Rothschild is a very well written and researched story spanning from the 1800s to the 2000s. Detailing the dynasty of the Rothschilds, this is a must read for fans of history and biographies.

Thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this ARC.

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For a nonfiction book, this one was filled with interesting insights into a family that is well known. I really enjoyed the focus on the women’s contribution to the family fame and fortune, even if a lot of it was focused around propping up the men socially.

The family history in general was fascinating. I found it so interesting how much the family contributed to Jewish history. The way that the women were disregarded and left out of the fortune was awful but I loved how they came back and proved themselves to be valuable business partners.

While the history included was so interesting, there were some parts that dragged. The details about the men’s runs for political positions were a bit on the dry side and there were other parts that I think required a bit more historical background knowledge (that I don’t have 😅) to understand better.

Overall, if you have some background knowledge on the happenings in Europe in the late 1800s and through the 1900s, this is a great read!

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This was an interesting history of the Rothschild women. It details how the dynasty began and all of the influence these women held throughout the history of the family and the Rothchild bank. These women, who are little remembered in Rothschild history, were poets, writers, artists, scientists, philanthropists and so much more. They were the backbone and at times the brains of the family and deserve as much recognition as their male counterparts. They survived wars, tragedy and societal shuns for their religious beliefs and still continued this great legacy. This was a very interesting read.

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Strong , independent, resourceful women have often played important roles throughout history. The Rothschild family women are a shining example of that. For generations, across Europe to New York City, in diverse endeavors such as philanthropy, business and supporting artists, the Rothschild women have been outstanding.

Culled from a variety of sources, this is nonfiction that reads like fiction. A fascinating look at what women can do, it would be a worthy addition to a women's studies program collection.

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A great book about the forgotten women of a dynamic and eternal dynasty. I didn't know much about the Rothschild's and it was a bit confusing with repeating names but to learn about their lives and how it changed over the years was fascinating.

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I was blown away by the depth of knowledge and the depth of scope in this wonderful piece of non-fiction. I will admit that this family was one I was not very familiar with abd I came away with a sound education. Engrossing and enjoyable

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This turned out to be a fascinating read! It hadn't been on my radar until I received a NetGalley invite to read, and I quickly jumped on it--both as I am a history buff and the topic looked interesting.

I was definitely not disappointed, and indeed quite pleased. A dense read? Yes, lol. But worthwhile for sure; the women of Rothschild lived intriguing lives worthy of sharing. I hope this sparks more books to be written; there's certainly no dearth of material available.

I received an eARC of the book from the publisher via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

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It took me awhile to get through this. It is an interesting book that highlights these remarkable women and I certainly learned a great deal about this family.

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In November, I made a point to read more history nonfiction for #nonfictionnovember, including an ARC of The Women of Rothschild: The Untold Story of the World's Most Famous Dynasty by Natalie Livingstone. This fascinating book focuses on the matriarchs of the Rothschild family, women who were formidable in their own right but have been lost to history until now. The author takes the reader from the family’s humble origins in Germany to its ascension in English royal palaces and grand estates.

She chooses a few Rothschild women to highlight in each generation, and my favorites were Charlotte and Constance who were involved in extensive charitable works and Nica and Miriam who risked their lives for the Allies in WWII. I loved the details from both world wars, and my heart was in my throat as one Rothschild family fled across Europe with Kaiser Wilhelm’s German army marching at their heels. The WWII stories were almost unbelievable with Nica using her own pilot license to help with the French resistance efforts in Africa and Miriam serving as a code breaker at the famous Bletchley Park. One Rothschild family estate was even turned into a Red Cross hospital and RAF airfield!

Time and again, the women in the Rothschild family proved their keen intellect and political acumen only to be relegated to the sidelines. As women in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, they found creative ways to fight for their beliefs whether it was voting rights for women or supporting the burgeoning movement to create Israel. They also had to deal with religious prejudice as Jewish women in Protestant England, which caused many family rifts as several women made marriages outside of the faith.

If you love real stories about fascinating women from history, you’ll want to read this book!

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Thanks NetGalley for this ARC of the Women of Rothschild
This took me a while to read as it's more historical information than a novel. I found it hard to stay engaged and keep reading, just wasn't my cup of tea.
It's filled with so much information about this very powerful and famous family. I'm not usually one to read historical biographies but had some interesting parts, i could not keep the women/characters straight though, I read it periodically in between other light reads
Well written and filled with an immense amount of history

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The word Rothschild is synonymous with generational wealth, banking and their legacy. What is not very well known are the women of this majestic family. The Women of Rothschild by Natalie Livingstone brings to light the women of the Rothschild family who played pivotal role in the transformation and strengthening of this family, which may be known to some, but is largely hidden from the public.

Natalie has provided details right from the start of the family's matriarch, whose methods lay the foundations for this family. Every woman from this family has played an important role, may it be for their family, or to this world.

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Rothschild. A name that brings to mind a great banking empire. While many acknowledge the men of the Rothschild family for establishing the dynasty, the women, those born into the family and those who married in, contributed to it as well. This is their story.

The name Rothschild is one I've occasionally read, and all I really knew was that they were a wealthy family involved in banking. When I first saw this book, I was intrigued to learn more about the family and there was a lot to learn! This family had branches in several countries and while the main family branch was involved in financing, there were other ventures that the family pursued.

Each section focuses on the women of that generation and which lady became the family matriarch. Each generation had influential hostesses who assisted their husband with political ambitions. There were those who pursued love outside of family expectations, becoming outsiders of their culture and faith.

The only reason I didn’t rate this five stars is because it is a heavy read. There are a lot of details of the time and individuals associated with the Rothschild family. It was difficult to come back to because I would feel lost about where in time I was at on the page. But once I began reading, I could catch up.

This is a book that those interested in the family and history in general will enjoy.

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What an extremely interesting book! The history of the Rothschild women was captivating and once started had to keep going to see how their deeply complicated role within the family evolved throughout time. This was not an easy read but as a fan of history I found it to be a complete and satisfying read.

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This was a very interesting and enjoyable read. Although the name of Rothschild I knew, but all I knew was that they were a very wealthy family and not much more. It was very interesting to read about the women of Rothschild, and how even though they were put in the background, they came to the forefront in many ways. if you like reading about history and famous people, I think you will enjoy this book.


I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley. This is my honest and voluntary review.

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This book was really informative. The narrative fulfilled the overall thesis, while maintaining an easy to read and easy to follow path. I had no idea about much of the information discussed and enjoyed learning about these women.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this dARC in exchange for my honest review.

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This is an important book. Anytime there are books about men - there should be information about the women too. It takes both men and women to make a successful life.
The Women of Rothschild, tells the story of the women of this dynasty. They had to forge their own paths as Jews in a Christian society and women in a man’s world, Livingstone paints detailed portraits of each of these women. These women have to accomplish all that they do while being invisible and getting none of the credit for the success of the family. As the years go by, the women are easier to relate to This is a history book and so it is not a fast read.

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A very intriguing read about an incredibly interesting family. I was amazed at the power the women yielded, and how they choose to use their power. A must read for lovers of history and women!

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A definitive chronicle of the Rothschild. It takes us back to the beginning. It lets us see how important a good match was to securing the future. It lets the grande dames take their place in dictating the norms in an insular society so consumed with their well being that they had little or no compassion for those outside their realm.

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Before reading this book, I did not know much about the Rothschilds. However, these women had fascinating stories. The writing of the book was very engaging and compelling. I hope there will be more stories on the women in the future!

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