Missing Downtown Abbey?
Then you need this book, this holiday season!
Drawing on Queen Victoria’s diaries, which she first started reading when she was a student at Cambridge University, Daisy Goodwin―creator and writer of the new PBS/Masterpiece drama Victoria and author of the bestselling novels The American Heiress and The Fortune Hunter―brings the young nineteenth-century monarch, who would go on to reign for 63 years, richly to life in this magnificent novel.
Early one morning, less than a month after her eighteenth birthday, Alexandrina Victoria is roused from bed with the news that her uncle William IV has died and she is now Queen of England. The men who run the country have doubts about whether this sheltered young woman, who stands less than five feet tall, can rule the greatest nation in the world. Despite her age, however, the young queen is no puppet. She has very definite ideas about the kind of queen she wants to be, and the first thing is to choose her name. “I do not like the name Alexandrina,” she proclaims. “From now on I wish to be known only by my second name, Victoria.”
Next, people say she must choose a husband. Everyone keeps telling her she’s destined to marry her first cousin, Prince Albert, but Victoria found him dull and priggish when they met three years ago. She is quite happy being queen with the help of her prime minister, Lord Melbourne, who may be old enough to be her father but is the first person to take her seriously.On June 19th, 1837, she was a teenager. On June 20th, 1837, she was a queen. Daisy Goodwin’s impeccably researched and vividly imagined new book brings readers Queen Victoria as they have never seen her before.
While this book spans the four early years in the life of the second longest serving monarch in British history (her great-great-granddaughter Elizabeth II,surpassed her 63 years of reign, in September of 2015), The book covers the years from 1835 – 1839, and her trials of life at Kensington and Buckingham Palace. It is a rich and detailed book that will delight any Anglophile or history lover
Goodwin is the creator/writer of the Masterpiece Presentation of Victoria, on PBS. If you saw that, then you pretty much know what is in this book. It was quite interesting for me to see how Victoria's life was so controlled by her mother, and then later she in turned was the same with her children. No lesson learned there. And it continued down generation after generation, You want family drama? This book has it in spades, making it perfect for reading this week, while you are desperately wanting to be away from yours! We tend to remember Victoria as a severe widow, lacking in humor and fun, btu this shows us the teenager underneath, who truly wasn't quite ready to rule, but accepted it and did some amazing things within her reign!
About the Author
DAISY GOODWIN, a Harkness scholar who attended Columbia University’s film school after earning a degree in history at Cambridge University, is a leading television producer in the U.K. Her poetry anthologies, including 101 Poems That Could Save Your Life, have introduced many new readers to the pleasures of poetry, and she was Chair of the judging panel of the 2010 Orange Prize for Fiction. She and her husband, an ABC TV executive, have two daughters and live in London. Check out her website for more info