AN EXPANDED AND UPDATED EDITION OF KATE HUBBARD'S CLASSIC STORY OF AMBITION AND EXCESS With the spirit of an adventuress and the heart of a shopkeeper, Bess set out to leave her mark on 16th-century England. A Derbyshire squire's daughter, she rose, via four well-chosen husbands, to become the second richest woman in England after Queen Elizabeth I. This is a story about mergers and acquisitions. It is also the story of one woman's quest - emerging triumphant from the wreckage of her first marriage - to build the most beautiful house in the country. In this sparkling biography, Kate Hubbard weaves the construction of Hardwick Hall into the tale of Bess's life, revealing it to be not just a work of architectural genius, but the expression of a towering, intractable personality.