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Dyslexia’s Dynamic Champion

Patience Thomson was a pioneer for misunderstood children

The Girl Who Outsmarted the Nazis

Janine de Greef spirited Allied airmen out of German territory

A Friend Among Spies

For 60 years, real-life spy turned author John le Carré wrote elegant best-sellers that used the world of espionage to expose the complexities of human nature

The High-Society Inventor

Peter Florjancic’s life may have been his best creation

Isa Stoppi

She was Italy’s first great model. Richard Avedon called her “the most beautiful woman in the world”

Mademoiselle’s Literary Glam Girl

Edie Locke encouraged Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan while publishing Truman Capote and John Updike

“A Bit of a Clever Dick”

Scottish actor-comedian John Sessions voiced Laurence Olivier, acted with Meryl Streep, and channeled Keith Richards

The Southern Heroine

Charismatic, witty, and determined, Marguerite Littman was a moving force in the early fight against AIDS and counted David Hockney, Bianca Jagger, and Princess Diana among her closest friends

Into Thin Air

Buddhist and bon vivant Ang Rita Sherpa—known as “the Snow Leopard”—led first-class expeditions (and an elusive life)

California Girl

Ann Getty was a stunning bi-coastal socialite who rescued Grove Press, the radically chic publisher of D. H. Lawrence, Henry Miller, and Samuel Beckett, because she loved to read

“The Best Eyes in the Business”

During the Swinging 60s, Valerie Askew ran the largest modeling agency in Europe and partied with the Beatles

The Woman in Black

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s unanswerable power of argument

The Way We Live Now

How Sir Terence Conran Turned Bauhaus into Your House

She Changed the Rhythm of American Life

Part of an all-female, mixed-race swing band in 1940s America, Helen Jones Woods dodged the Klan to make a joyful—and powerful—noise

The World’s Most Amusing Naughty Person

As Sotheby’s prepares to auction the treasures of John Richardson, his friend remembers the art historian’s intense, inspiring, high-low life

A Writer’s Editor

A longtime editor for Time magazine, Ray Cave brought ambition, wisdom, and wit to the job

La Chanteuse des Rues

Inspired by Edith Piaf, Lily Lian sang for the pedestrians of Paris

Leading Lady

Olivia de Havilland’s soft power on-screen blew away even the likes of Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh

I ❤️ MG

A longtime collaborator recalls Milton Glaser, a giant of midcentury graphic design

The Fall Guy

Bronx nebbish Herb Stempel revealed that America’s best-rated quiz show was a fraud—and so was its beloved champion, Charles Van Doren

The Real Benjamin Braddock

Charles Webb rebelled against his privileged upbringing by writing The Graduate—then renounced his own phenomenal success

Live at the Front

Vera Lynn’s torch songs were not high art, but they kept up morale among the rank-and-file British soldiers fighting W.W. II

James Sherwood

In 1982, he boldly resurrected the fabled Orient Express. It became the cornerstone of Belmond, the billion-dollar hotel group

The Robespierre of Lafayette Street

The director who first staged The Normal Heart remembers the many-sided activist-playwright Larry Kramer