Charlotte Knipe and Daniel Hamilton, childhood sweethearts on the remote volcanic island of St Helena, are swept up in a whirlwind of international intrigue when Napoleon is exiled there after his defeat at Waterloo.
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About the Author
This clandestine affair between an imprisoned emperor and the
island girl he calls Rosebud has a very personal backstory. When I was a child back home in South Africa my grandfather, who emigrated from Saint Helena in the late 1880’s, often spoke about his family’s acquaintance with the great man. A big print of Napoleon hung on his living room wall. “Remember that we have been touched by greatness,” were his enigmatic last words.
When I researched this claim many years later and discovered
the Rosebud legend I realized why my grandfather, a Victorian gentleman, hadn’t gone into detail. Charlotte Knipe, said to be the most beautiful girl on Saint Helena at the time, is on record as having been a frequent guest of the emperor and rumored to have been his lover.
Rosebud is my great-great-grandaunt. The “touch of
greatness” was Napoleon’s.
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