Elizabeth the Queen : the life of a modern monarch
Smith, Sally Bedell, 1948-
From the moment of her ascension to the throne in 1952 at the age of twenty-five, Queen Elizabeth II has been the object of unparalleled scrutiny. But through the fog of glamour and gossip, how well do we really know the world's most famous monarch? Drawing on numerous interviews and never-before-revealed documents, acclaimed biographer Sally Bedell Smith pulls back the curtain to show in intimate detail the public and private lives of Queen Elizabeth II, who has led her country and Commonwealth through the wars and upheavals of the last sixty years with unparalleled composure, intelligence, and grace.
In Elizabeth the Queen, we meet the young girl who suddenly becomes "heiress presumptive" when her uncle abdicates the throne. We meet the thirteen-year-old Lilibet as she falls in love with a young navy cadet named Philip and becomes determined to marry him, even though her parents prefer wealthier English aristocrats. We see the teenage Lilibet repairing army trucks during World War II and standing with Winston Churchill on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on V-E Day. We see the young Queen struggling to balance the demands of her job with her role as the mother of two young children. Sally Bedell Smith brings us inside the palace doors and into the Queen's daily routines--the "red boxes" of documents she reviews each day, the weekly meetings she has had with twelve prime ministers, her physically demanding tours abroad, and the constant scrutiny of the press--as well as her personal relationships: with Prince Philip, her husband of sixty-four years and the love of her life; her children and their often-disastrous marriages; her grandchildren and friends.
Compulsively readable and scrupulously researched, Elizabeth the Queen is a close-up view of a woman we've known only from a distance, illuminating the lively personality, sense of humor, and canny intelligence with which she meets the most demanding work and family obligations. It is also a fascinating window into life at the center of the last great monarchy.
The Firm : the troubled life of the House of Windsor
It would be hard to invent a group of personalities more extraordinary than the British Royal Family -- known as 'The Firm' by Prince Philip. This book will look in depth at how the family really operates and will reveal how they behave behind closed doors. With showbiz stars and sporting celebrities now attracting the adulation once afforded to royalty, The Firm questions what monarchy is for. Is it a hangover from the past, an expensive anachronism, a relic of a bygone age of deference and hierarchy, or is it an important and relevant part of Britain in the 21st century - something that gives stability and continuity to the country, and richness and glamour to our national life in ways that a republic never could ? If so, do the media mock, hound and criticize the Royal Family at their peril? Could Prince William decide that the long lenses and the scrutiny of his private life is too high a price to pay? They live in the lap of luxury with valets and butlers, cooks and courtiers, but for all the palaces and privilege it is not an enviable life. cradle to coffin, they have no privacy, no freedom, no voice and so long as Britain continues to want a monarchy, no choice. The Firm investigates the Family's relationship with government, the press and the people. It looks at whether the institution can reach out to those, particularly the young, who see the House of Windsor as no more interesting or significant than the players in a soap opera. It asks, in short, whether the British monarchy has a future.
It's not me, it's you
McFarlane, Mhairi, author
An achingly funny story about how to be your own hero when life pulls the rug out from under your feet. From the author of the bestselling YOU HAD ME AT HELLO
Delia Moss isn't quite sure where she went wrong.
When she proposed and discovered her boyfriend was sleeping with someone else -- she thought it was her fault.
When she realised life would never be the same again -- she thought it was her fault.
And when he wanted her back like nothing had changed -- Delia started to wonder if perhaps she was not to blame...
From Newcastle to London and back again, with dodgy jobs, eccentric bosses and annoyingly handsome journalists thrown in, Delia must find out where her old self went -- and if she can ever get her back.
The king who had to go : Edward VIII, Mrs Simpson and the hidden politics of the abdication crisis
The relationship between Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson created a constitutional crisis that has fascinated the public for decades. In this fascinating behind-the-scenes account of the royal abdication crisis of 1936, Adrian Phillips reveals the previously untold story of the hidden political machinations and insidious battles in Westminster and Whitehall that settled the fate of the King and Mrs Simpson.
Monarch : the life and reign of Elizabeth II
Lacey, Robert, 1944-
In February 6, 1952, Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor became Elizabeth II, Queen of England. "Monarch" is bestselling author Robert Lacey's unique biography of Elizabeth Windsor as well as his acute analysis of history's most durable symbol of political authority: the British monarchy.
"Monarch" is a revelatory examination of Elizabeth II as a human being and of an institution shaped over the years by the wishes and dreams -- and sometimes the anger and unhappiness -- of the British people. As such, it is both a celebration and an analysis of the world's best-known monarchy. Here are Elizabeth's ancestors and models: her great-grandmother Victoria (adored as a young queen, derided for her middle-aged seclusion from her subjects, and revered as the longest-reigning monarch in British history); the playboy Prince of Wales, later Edward VII; Elizabeth's grandfather George V; her adored uncle David, who abdicated as Edward VIII; her father, George VI; and her extraordinarily well loved mother, the Queen Mum. "Monarch" brings Elizabeth to life as never before: "Lillibet" as a baby, being instructed in the proper way to wave to a crowd
My husband and I : the inside story of the royal marriage
Seward, Ingrid, author.
With interest in the royal couple at a new peak thanks to the hit TV series The Crown , Ingrid Seward reveals the real story of the marriage of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip.
When a young Princess Elizabeth met and fell in love with the dashing Naval Lieutenant Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, it wasn't without its problems. The romance between the sailor prince and the young princess brought a splash of colour to a nation still in the grip of post-war austerity. When they married in Westminster Abbey in November 1947, there were 3000 guests, including six kings and seven queens. Within five years, as Queen Elizabeth II, she would ascend to the throne and later be crowned in front of millions watching through the new medium of television.
Throughout her record-breaking reign , she relied on the formidable partnership she had made with her consort. Now, after 70 years of their marriage , acclaimed royal biographer Ingrid Seward sheds new light on their relationship and its impact on their family and on the nation.
In My Husband and I , we discover the challenges faced by Prince Philip as he has had to learn to play second fiddle to the Queen in all their public engagements, but we also get a revealing insight into how their relationship operates behind closed doors . As the years have gone by, there have been rumours of marital troubles, fierce debates over how to bring up their children, and they have had to deal with family traumas - from scandalous divorces to shocking deaths - in the full glare of the public eye. But somehow, their relationship has endured and provided a model of constancy to inspire all around them.
This book is not only a vivid portrait of a hugely important marriage, it is a celebration of the power of love.
Ninety-nine glimpses of Princess Margaret
Brown, Craig, 1957-, author
"Rollicking, irresistible, un-put-downable . . . For anyone . . . who swooned to Netflix's The Crown , this book will be manna from heaven." --Hamish Bowles, Vogue
" Ninety-Nine Glimpses of Princess Margaret is a brilliant, eccentric treat. " --Anna Mundow, The Wall Street Journal
" I ripped through the book with the avidity of Margaret attacking her morning vodka and orange juice . . . The wisdom of the book, and the artistry, is in how Brown subtly expands his lens from Margaret's misbehavior . . . to those who gawked at her, who huddled around her, pens poised over their diaries, hoping for the show she never denied them. " --Parul Sehgal, The New York Times
"Brown has done something astonishing: He makes the reader care, even sympathize, with perhaps the last subject worthy of such affection . . . His book is big fun, equal measures insightful and hysterical. " --Karen Heller, The Washington Post
A witty and profound portrait of the most talked-about English royal
She made John Lennon blush and Marlon Brando tongue-tied. She iced out Princess Diana and humiliated Elizabeth Taylor. Andy Warhol photographed her. Jack Nicholson offered her cocaine. Gore Vidal revered her. Francis Bacon heckled her. Peter Sellers was madly in love with her. For Pablo Picasso, she was the object of sexual fantasy.
Princess Margaret aroused passion and indignation in equal measures. To her friends, she was witty and regal. To her enemies, she was rude and demanding. In her 1950s heyday, she was seen as one of the most glamorous and desirable women in the world. By the time of her death in 2002, she had come to personify disappointment. One friend said he had never known an unhappier woman. The tale of Princess Margaret is Cinderella in reverse: hope dashed, happiness mislaid, life mishandled.
Such an enigmatic and divisive figure demands a reckoning that is far from the usual fare. Combining interviews, parodies, dreams, parallel lives, diaries, announcements, lists, catalogues, and essays, Craig Brown's Ninety-Nine Glimpses of Princess Margaret is a kaleidoscopic experiment in biography and a witty meditation on fame and art, snobbery and deference, bohemia and high society.
Not in front of the corgis : secrets of life behind the royal curtains
Interest in the British royal family is inexhaustible. Just take the amazing clamor over the recent wedding of William and Kate! But who are the Royals, and what do they get up to when we aren't watching them?
In Not in Front of the Corgis , a veteran Royal commentator and author of more than twenty books on the Royals peeks behind the curtains to tell us what they really get up to in their spare time. The book asks questions like what the Queen watches on TV and why she does not have a driving license, and answers thousands of questions about the world's most famous family, including who are the most popular Royals to work for, and who the least? Who is the grandest of the Queen's children and why? Why do Edward and Andrew pay less than Charles' private secretary for the rent of their homes, and what records did the Queen Mother like to dance to?
Not in Front of the Corgis is a unique and fascinating miscellany containing everything you ever wanted to know about the Royal Family, away from the spotlight.
Brian Hoey has been a writer and broadcaster for over forty years, covering countless Royal events, including the wedding of Charles and Diana in 1981 and Princess Diana's funeral in 1997.
Prince Charles : the passions and paradoxes of an improbable life
Smith, Sally Bedell, 1948-, author
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * The life and loves of Prince Charles are illuminated in a major new biography from the New York Times bestselling author of Elizabeth the Queen --perfect for fans of The Crown .
Sally Bedell Smith returns once again to the British royal family to give us a new look at Prince Charles, the oldest heir to the throne in more than three hundred years. This vivid, eye-opening biography--the product of four years of research and hundreds of interviews with palace officials, former girlfriends, spiritual gurus, and more, some speaking on the record for the first time--is the first authoritative treatment of Charles's life that sheds light on the death of Diana, his marriage to Camilla, and his preparations to take the throne one day.
Prince Charles brings to life the real man, with all of his ambitions, insecurities, and convictions. It begins with his lonely childhood, in which he struggled to live up to his father's expectations and sought companionship from the Queen Mother and his great-uncle Lord Mountbatten. It follows him through difficult years at school, his early love affairs, his intellectual quests, his entrepreneurial pursuits, and his intense search for spiritual meaning. It tells of the tragedy of his marriage to Diana; his eventual reunion with his true love, Camilla; and his relationships with William, Kate, Harry, and his grandchildren.
Ranging from his glamorous palaces to his country homes, from his globe-trotting travels to his local initiatives, Smith shows how Prince Charles possesses a fiercely independent spirit and yet has spent more than six decades waiting for his destined role, living a life dictated by protocols he often struggles to obey. With keen insight and the discovery of unexpected new details, Smith lays bare the contradictions of a man who is more complicated, tragic, and compelling than we knew, until now.
Praise for Prince Charles
"[Smith] understands the British upper classes and aristocracy (including the royals) very well indeed. . . . [She] makes many telling, shrewd points in pursuit of realigning the popular image of Prince Charles." --William Boyd, The New York Times Book Review
"[A] masterly account." -- The Wall Street Journal
"Thoroughly researched and insightful . . . In this profile, it is clear [Smith] got inside the circular barriers that protect the man and his position. The Charles that emerges is, as the subtitle suggests, both a paradox and a creature of his passions." -- The Washington Times
"[A] compellingly juicy bio . . . Windsor-philes will be mesmerized." -- People
" Prince Charles paints an affectingly human portrait. . . . Smith writes about [Charles's life] with a skill and sympathy she perfected in her 2012 biography of Charles's mother." -- The Christian Science Monitor
"Comprehensive and admirably fair . . . Until his accession to the throne, Smith's portrait will stand as the definitive study."-- Booklist (starred review)
"[A] fascinating book that is not just about a man who would be king, but also about the duties that come with privilege." --Walter Isaacson
"Sally Bedell Smith has given us a complete and compelling portrait of the man in the shadow of the throne. It's all here, from the back stairs of the palaces to the front pages of the tabs." --Tom Brokaw
Princes at war : the bitter battle inside Britain's royal family in the darkest days of WWII
Cadbury, Deborah, author
In 1936, the British monarchy faced the greatest threats to its survival in the modern era --the crisis of abdication and the menace of Nazism. The fate of the country rested in the hands of George V's sorely unequipped sons:
*a stammering King George VI, terrified that the world might discover he was unfit to rule
*a dull-witted Prince Henry, who wanted only a quiet life in the army
*the too-glamorous Prince George, the Duke of Kent--a reformed hedonist who found new purpose in the RAF and would become the first royal to die in a mysterious plane crash
*the Duke of Windsor, formerly King Edward VIII, deemed a Nazi-sympathizer and traitor to his own country--a man who had given it all up for love
Princes at War is a riveting portrait of these four very different men miscast by fate, one of whom had to save the monarchy at a moment when kings and princes from across Europe were washing up on England's shores as the old order was overturned. Scandal and conspiracy swirled around the palace and its courtiers, among them dangerous cousins from across Europe's royal families, gold-digging American socialite Wallis Simpson, and the King's Lord Steward, upon whose estate Hitler's deputy Rudolf Hess parachuted (seemingly by coincidence) as London burned under the Luftwaffe's tireless raids.
Deborah Cadbury draws on new research, personal accounts from the royal archives, and other never-before-revealed sources to create a dazzling sequel to The King's Speech and tell the true and thrilling drama of Great Britain at war and of a staggering transformation for its monarchy.
Princess : the early life of Queen Elizabeth II
Dismore, Jane, author
In November 2017 the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. As a 13-year-old Princess, she fell in love with Prince Philip of Greece, an ambitious naval cadet, and they married when she was 21; when she suddenly became Queen at 25, their lives changed forever. Philip has been her great support, but fortunately she also had a solid foundation that helped prepare her for a life dedicated to duty. With previously unpublished material and unique memories from friends and relatives who have known her since childhood, this book looks afresh and in richer depth at her life as Princess, glittering yet isolating. Vivid detail and anecdotes reveal more about her, the era in which she grew up and the people who shaped her life. The archives of royal confidante Lady Desborough and Private Secretary Sir Alec Hardinge reveal unseen letters from the Princess and the royal family, giving intimate insights into their lives and minds. Here is her sadness at the death of her nanny, Alah; her joy in her children; her melancholy as a young wife when Philip returns to his ship; the sensitivities of her father. Here too is the Princess with the aristocratic Bowes Lyons, her mother's family, who featured significantly in her life, yet rarely appear in books. The author sheds new light on anomalies surrounding the birth of her mother who, it has been asserted, was the daughter of the family's cook. The strain of wartime on the royal family is highlighted in new material contrasting the stance of the Princess's uncles, the Duke of Windsor and David Bowes Lyon. In contrast with her upbringing, Philip's early life was turbulent, although their lives shared some interesting parallels. Lady Butter, a relation of Philip and friend of the Princess, recalls time spent with each of them; and unpublished documents show how intelligence agencies considered the socialist influence of the Mountbattens on Philip and thus on the royal court. More importantly, Princess traces how an "ordinary country girl" suddenly found herself in the line of succession to the crown at age ten when her Uncle, the Duke of Windsor, abdicated the throne to his brother Albert ("Bertie" to family and friends), the once and future King George VI. Breaking new ground for a future English monarch, she became the first female member of the royal family to serve on active duty during World War II, and broke tradition by sending her children away to school rather having them privately tutored. Indeed, by the time of her coronation in 1953, she had already achieved a "broad and solid background from which she could draw during the rapidly changing times of her long reign. Out of a little princess they made a Queen."
Princess Margaret : a life of contrasts
Warwick, Christopher, 1949-, author
One of the most controversial royal figures of the twentieth century, Princess Margaret was admired as well as vilified for most of her adult life. Described by the designer and hotelier, Anouska Hempel, as "Witty, wicked and wonderful," this charismatic princess not only brought colour and sex appeal into the Royal Family, but did much to help bring the monarchy and its attitudes into the modern world.
Adored younger daughter of King George VI and only sister of Queen Elizabeth II, Margaret was a pre-war princess whose world was hugely circumscribed by the strictures and protocol of another age, leading to conflict and misunderstanding in both her private and public life.
In his biography, Princess Margaret: A Life of Contrasts , Christopher Warwick redresses the balance. Whilst giving the full, insider story of the Princess's many love affairs, he also looks at her tireless work for charity, breaking many taboos along the way - Princess Margaret, not Diana, was the first Royal to champion HIV and AIDS awareness.
The queen mother : the untold story of Elizabeth Bowes Lyon, who became Queen Elizabeth the queen mother
Campbell, Colin, Lady, 1949-
Packed with stunning revelations, this is the inside story of The Queen Mother from the New York Times bestselling author who first revealed the truth about Princess Diana
Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother has been called the "most successful queen since Cleopatra." Her personality was so captivating that even her arch-enemy Wallis Simpson wrote about "her legendary charm." Portrayed as a selfless partner to the King in the Oscar-winning movie The King's Speech, The Queen Mother is most often remembered from her later years as the smiling granny with the pastel hats. When she died in 2002, just short of her 102nd birthday, she was praised for a long life well lived.
But there was another side to her story. For the first time, Lady Colin Campbell shows us that the untold life of the Queen Mother is far more fascinating and moving than the official version that has been peddled ever since she became royal in 1923. With unparalleled sources--including members of the Royal Family, aristocrats, and friends and relatives of Elizabeth herself--this mesmerizing account takes us inside the real and sometimes astonishing world of the royal family.
The Queen's houses : royal Britain at home
Titchmarsh, Alan, author.
The Queen's life is dedicated to her public - every move is scrutinised, every word noted. But her homes are havens where peace can be found, away from watchful eyes; sanctuaries of private calm in a whirlwind life of public duty.
In The Queen's Houses , Alan Titchmarsh takes us on a tour of the royal residences, examining the personal family stories behind these magnificent buildings. Through personal reflections, interviews with royal staff and meticulous historical research, Alan looks beyond the formal grandeur of Buckingham Palace, the imposing structure of Windsor Castle and the private escape offered by Balmoral and others.
Illustrated with intimate family photographs and evocative memorabilia, The Queen's Houses offers a glimpse of life behind the state banquets and sovereign duties - a respectful study of the royal family at home.
The queen's jewels : the personal collection of Elizabeth II
Providing an extensively illustrated account of Queen Elizabeth II's personal collection of jewellery, and published with the co-operation of Buckingham Palace, this book includes stories and pictures of items worn by members of the royal family for over 400 years. The anecdotal text which accompanies the wealth of photographs is based on close examination of memoirs, photographs and documents in the royal archives.
Biography of the British royal family; includes new chapter.
A spirit undaunted : the political role of George VI
James, Robert Rhodes, 1933-
The survival of the British monarchy is a phenomenon of modern world history, and conventional wisdom holds that this success is due in large part to the royal family's subservience to Parliament, especially since 1688. Arguing that the reality is very different, this book explores the political role of the monarchy from George III to George VI, with particular emphasis on the political insight of the latter, the author sets out to show just how close was the relationship between the King and Winston Churchill during the darkest days of World War II, and the extent to which an underrated monarch helped to steer Britain towards victory.
That woman : the life of Wallis Simpson, Duchess of Windsor
The first full scale biography of Wallis Simpson to be written by a woman, exploring the mind of one of the most glamorous and reviled figures of the Twentieth Century, a character who played prominently in the blockbuster film The King's Speech.
This is the story of the American divorcee notorious for allegedly seducing a British king off his throne. "That woman," so called by Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother, was born Bessie Wallis Warfield in 1896 in Baltimore. Neither beautiful nor brilliant, she endured an impoverished childhood, which fostered in her a burning desire to rise above her circumstances.
Acclaimed biographer Anne Sebba offers an eye-opening account of one of the most talked about women of her generation. It explores the obsessive nature of Simpson's relationship with Prince Edward, the suggestion that she may have had a Disorder of Sexual Development, and new evidence showing she may never have wanted to marry Edward at all.
Since her death, Simpson has become a symbol of female empowerment as well as a style icon. But her psychology remains an enigma. Drawing from interviews and newly discovered letters, That Woman shines a light on this captivating and complex woman, an object of fascination that has only grown with the years.
Young Elizabeth : the making of the Queen
Williams, Kate, 1974- author.
A lively and poignant biography of the young princess who, at the impressionable age of eleven, found that she was now heiress to the throne, by the New York Times bestselling author of Becoming Queen Victoria .
We can hardly imagine a Britain without Elizabeth II on the throne. It seems to be the job she was born for. And yet for much of her early life the young princess did not know the role that her future would hold. She was our accidental Queen.
Elizabeth's determination to share in the struggles of her people marked her out from a young age. Her father initially refused to let her volunteer as a nurse during the Blitz, but relented when she was 18 and allowed her to work as a mechanic and truck driver for the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service. It was her forward-thinking approach that ensured that her coronation was televised, against the advice of politicians at the time.
Kate Williams reveals how the 25-year-old young queen carved out a lasting role for herself amid the changes of the 20th century. Her monarchy would be a very different one to that of her parents and grandparents, and its continuing popularity in the 21st century owes much to the intelligence and elusive personality of this remarkable woman.
Young Prince Philip : his turbulent early life
A gripping biography of the early life of Prince Philip, published to coincide with his 90th birthday
Married for more than sixty years to the most famous woman in the world, Prince Philip is the longest-serving royal consort in British history. Yet while he is still one of the most recognisable figures in public life, his origins remain curiously shrouded in obscurity.
In 'Young Prince Philip', the first book to focus exclusively on his life before the coronation, biographer Philip Eade recounts the Prince's extraordinary upbringing in Greece, France, Nazi Germany and Britain, where he inhabited a notably colourful milieu yet was beset by continual turbulence and a succession of family tragedies.
This revealing book examines the formative psychological effects of having a mother who was born deaf and was committed to a psychiatric clinic when Philip was nine, and a father who was so traumatised by his treatment at the hands of Greek revolutionaries that he later left his young son to be brought up by his wife's family, the Milford Havens and Mountbattens, just when Philip needed him most.
Remarkably, there emerged from this unsettled background a character of singular vitality and dash - self-confident, capable, famously opinionated and devastatingly handsome. Girls fell at his feet, and the princess who would become his wife was smitten from the age of thirteen. Yet alongside the considerable charm and intelligence, the young prince was also prone to volcanic outbursts and to putting his foot in it. Detractors perceived in his behaviour emotional shortcomings, a legacy of his traumatic childhood, which would have profound consequences for his family and the future of the monarchy.
Published to coincide with the Prince's ninetieth birthday and containing new material from interviews, archives and film footage, 'Young Prince Philip' is the most complete and compelling account yet of his storm-tossed early life.