The Woman Who Shot Mussolini: A Biography

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At 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, April 7, 1926, a woman stepped out of the crowd on Rome's Campidoglio Square and shot Mussolini at point-blank range. He escaped virtually unscathed. Violet Gibson, who expected to be thanked for her action, was arrested, labeled a "crazy Irish spinster" and a "half-mad mystic"---and promptly forgotten. Now, in an elegant work of reconstruction, Frances Stonor Saunders retrieves this remarkable figure from the lost historical record. In a grand tragic narrative, full of suspense and mystery, conspiracy and back-room diplomacy, she vividly resurrects the life and times of a woman who sought to forestall catastrophe, whatever the cost.

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User Review  - Kirkus

The story of the little-known Violet Gibson (1876-1956), who shot Italian ruler Benito Mussolini on April 7, 1926, but failed in her assassination attempt.London-based cultural historian Saunders (The ... Read full review

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User Review  - golux1 - LibraryThing

A fascinating account of one of the many attempts on Mussolini's life, this one by a diminutive Irishwoman, the Honourable Violet Gibson, sometimes reminds one of the song "I danced with a man who ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Frances Stonor Saunders is the author of The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters, which was short-listed for the Guardian First Book Award, received the Royal Historical Society's Gladstone Memorial Prize, and was translated into ten languages. Her writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, as well as The Guardian and The Independent. She lives in London.

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