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Prince Andrew's involvement with Jeffrey Epstein has been a cause of great controversy and scandal for the royal family. If the case between the prince and Virginia Giuffre goes to court, it certainly won't be the first time a royal has been called to testify. Richard Fitzwilliams, a royal commentator, talks about the current state of the royal family, while historian, Catharine Arnold, shares the scandalous story of Prince Andrew's great, great grandfather Edward VII (Bertie) and his tribulations in court. Can we take lessons for today from this historical royal scandal? 

"Travels With George: In Search of Washington and His Legacy" by Nathaniel Philbrick; Viking (375 pages, $30) ——— There's been an impressive flurry of recent books on George Washington, volumes about him as spymaster during the Revolution, his relations with Native Americans, even a breezy biography titled "You Never Forget Your First." This book, Philbrick's third on George, is an insightful ...

LOS ANGELES — Can a single object contain within it the narratives of a family and an entire nation? If so, for Joan Didion that item may have been a potato masher. The masher in question — a humble kitchen implement whose creation dates to the first half of the 19th century — made the arduous overland journey west some time in 1846-87 with her ancestors, the Cornwalls, a faction of the ...

LOS ANGELES — When Matthew Specktor decided to start writing in earnest as a college sophomore, Joan Didion was on his mind. Specktor, who grew up a few blocks from Didion’s Santa Monica home in the early 1980s, wanted to write about Los Angeles too, and he understood that Didion not only offered historical context — she was historical context. “She set me back 10 years, because I had to write ...

A social history of Concord in the 19th century examines the ways changes in the town influenced Emerson and Thoreau. "The Transcendentalists and Their World" by Robert A. Gross; Farrar, Straus, and Giroux (864 pages, $40) ——— Ralph Waldo Emerson relocated to Concord, Massachusetts, in 1834 to live with the Rev. Ezra Ripley, his step-grandfather. On July 4, 1837, at the dedication of a ...

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