Henrietta Howard, later Countess of Suffolk, was the long-term mistress and confidante of King George II. She was also, as Tracy Borman's wonderfully readable biography reveals, a dedicated patron of the arts; a lively and talented intellectual in her own right; a victim of adultery; a passionate advocate for the rights of women long before the dawn of feminism. Above all she was a woman of reason in an Age of Reason. The mark that this enigmatic and largely neglected royal mistress left on the society and culture of early Georgian England was to resonate well beyond the confines of the court, and can still be felt today.
Tracy Borman studied and taught history at the University of Hull and was awarded a PhD in 1997. She went on to a successful career in heritage and has worked for a range of historic properties and national heritage organisations, including the National Archives and English Heritage. She is now Chief Executive of the Heritage Education Trust and also works part-time for Historic Royal Palaces. Tracy has regularly appeared on television and radio, and has featured in a range of magazine and newspaper articles. She is a regular contributor to history magazines, including articles in BBC History Magazine on the history of beauty and eighteenth-century 'It' Girls'. In addition, she also gives public talks and lectures on a wide range of subjects.