If you are a newer follower (Hello! Welcome to my blog! ), you might not know that I am a fierce Royalist. I inherited my grandparents love of the British Royal Family and have carried that love and fascination into adulthood- biographies, movies, souvenirs, documentaries, and more time on Pinterest than I should admit to. I don’t limit my fascination to any one dynasty or period, from the Tudors to the Windsors, I’ll learn and read about any of it! I love celebrating the spring with a few royal biographies, a re-watch of the 2011 Royal Wedding, and a fantastic tea. This is a brief introduction for everyone else!
I will read most any royal biography, simply on the basis that they are about a royal. I will admit that this has led me to read some pretty terrible books, unfortunately. (Not all biographies are worth their subject…) However, I have been lucky to come across some real gems! My recommendations to get started?
Kate: The Future Queen (Katie Nicholl) is a great introduction to the Duchess of Cambridge if you are new to her! It’s not terribly long (only 354 pages), so I would say that most people could read it in a day or two. It’s interesting to read about a royal with common beginnings as you often see a lot more of your life in it than someone who was tutored in a palace! Most of the biography is focused on her relationship with Prince William and her journey to becoming the Duchess that she is today.
The Courtiers: Splendor and Intrigue in the Georgian Court at Kensington Palace (Lucy Worsley) This looks a little bit dense but I promise you that it isn’t overwhelming or academic. When we think of the past, it can often seem gritty and depressing and full of work and death. However, the Georgian Court is fascinating- parties, scandals, and drama abound without the insanity of the pre-Revolution French Court… Lucy is an intelligent and engaging historian, and you could not have a better guide to royal history!
Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch (Sally Bledel Smith) This is one of the strongest royal biographies that I have read thus far- you follow along from her birth to the present with nothing being left out or passed by. What I loved about Elizabeth the Queen is that there is an incredible range of sources, from the artists who have done portraits to journalists and articles to friends and employees. I could not put this down and actually stayed up an hour late (that never happens) to finish this!
I completely understand that not everyone is into reading, and that sometimes you don’t have the time or mental energy to sit down and read a book. Enter: documentaries! I prefer documentaries to fictional movies, that is just my personal taste. There is a great six part series on Netflix called The Royals that covers different aspects of royal life, but there are also quite a few on YouTube that are available totally free! I’ve linked part one of five of Monarchy: the Royal Family at Work, a series that shows that explains what the members of the British Royal Family actually do. I think that there are a lot of misconceptions about what they do and don’t do with their time, but a lot of it is dedicated to engagements and causes rather than galas and spa treatments.
So, I admit that I usually can’t stop myself from buying a magazine with a royal on it. Hello! isn’t specifically a “royal” magazine but I’d say that 60% of the time a royal is featured. The UK Hello! is stronger than the Canadian Hello! but both offer many more royal stores than US magazines do, and they will focus on neutral or positive stories while US magazines will often focus on negative stories. If you want a quality royal magazine, I would recommend Majesty! It’s not overly expensive, it’s pretty easily found in bookstores (and can be ordered online), it features royals from numerous countries, and it is a good quality- I have kept some issues for over 15 years and they still look fantastic. (Yes. I collected Majesty as a 10 year old. I’ve admitted that my obsession started early…) I’m probably most proud of snagging the 100th Year issue of British Voque with the Duchess of Cambridge, it took months of calling and planning with my local bookstore!
Are you interested in royals? Do you have a favourite royal?