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Tuesday, November 1, 2022

George VI and Elizabeth: The Marriage that Saved the Monarchy (By Sally Bedell Smith)

Available for Pre-Order
**Description as provided on NetGalley

A revelatory account of how King George VI and Queen Elizabeth’s loving marriage saved the monarchy during World War II, and how they raised their daughter to become Queen Elizabeth II, based on exclusive access to the Royal Archives—from the bestselling author of Elizabeth the Queen and Prince Charles.

Granted special access by Queen Elizabeth II to her parents’ letters and diaries and to the papers of their close friends and family, Sally Bedell Smith brings the love story of this iconic royal couple to vibrant life. This deeply researched and revealing book shows how a loving and devoted marriage helped the King and Queen meet the challenges of World War II, lead a nation, solidify the public’s faith in the monarchy, and raise their daughters, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret.

When King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in 1936, shattering the crown’s reputation, his younger brother, known as Bertie, assumed his father’s name and became King George VI. Shy, sensitive, and afflicted with a stutter, George VI had never imagined that he would become King. His wife Elizabeth, a pretty, confident, and outgoing woman who became known later in life as “the Queen Mum,” strengthened and advised her husband. With his wife’s support, guidance, and love, George VI was able to overcome his insecurities and become an exceptional leader, navigating the country through World War II, establishing a relationship with Winston Churchill, visiting Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt in Washington and in Hyde Park, and inspiring the British people with his courage and compassion during the blitz. Simultaneously, George VI and Elizabeth raised their daughter Princess Elizabeth, who spent her childhood watching and learning from her parents to become the future queen. She fell in love with Prince Philip at thirteen.

I adore a good biography, and honestly, Sally Bedell Smith does not disappoint. Having read other books she'd written, I jumped at this one.

While no one could've predicted their rise to King and Queen Consort, this couple handled everything from family and political drama of the Edward VII's abdication, to World War II and its aftermath. 

I also enjoyed the personal portrait of their relationship, and that with their families. I admired their supportive and obviously warm and loving relationship. Not only with each other but with the other's parents and siblings.

Well-written and researched, this is a wonderful read. It's not written as a stodgy academic piece, but rather the story of a couple that changed the path of the monarchy and led their country well. 

This title is due to be published April 4, 2023, and can be pre-ordered.

What do you think??

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this ebook galley from Random House Publishing Group through the netGalley publisher/reader connection program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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