Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Wallis in Love: The Untold Life of the Duchess of Windsor, the Woman Who Changed the Monarchy” as Want to Read:
Wallis in Love: The Untold Life of the Duchess of Windsor, the Woman Who Changed the Monarchy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Wallis in Love: The Untold Life of the Duchess of Windsor, the Woman Who Changed the Monarchy

3.51  ·  Rating details ·  1,709 ratings  ·  219 reviews
For fans of the Netflix series The Crown and from the author of the New York Times bestseller 17 Carnations comes a captivating biography of Wallis Simpson, the notorious woman for whom Edward VIII gave up the throne.

"You have no idea how hard it is to live out a great romance." -- Wallis Simpson

Before she became known as the woman who enticed a king from his throne
...more
Hardcover, 416 pages
Published February 13th 2018 by Grand Central Publishing
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Wallis in Love, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Wallis in Love

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.51  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,709 ratings  ·  219 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of Wallis in Love: The Untold Life of the Duchess of Windsor, the Woman Who Changed the Monarchy
Katie B
I've been wanting to learn more about Wallis Simpson for awhile now. I didn't know much about her other than she was twice divorced when she married the former king and both of them may have been Nazi sympathizers. I was hoping by reading this book I would learn more about their Nazi connections and just what it was about this woman that made a king give up everything for her.

She really was a piece of work, that's for sure. I pretty much came to the conclusion that you can't really trust anythin
...more
*TUDOR^QUEEN*
Feb 23, 2018 rated it liked it
This advance reader copy was provided by Grand Central Publishing via NetGalley.

Years ago when I still thought that Wallis Simpson and David Windsor were a match made in heaven and soulmates, it was such a romantic vision. It was very disheartening over time to learn that although the former king worshiped the ground Wallis walked on, the twice-divorced American Mrs. Simpson was just looking to become HRH queen at his side. Her whole existence revolved around elevating her social position. In th
...more
Laurie
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
On June of 1896, Bessie Wallis Warfield was born. In November of that same year, her tubercular father died. Her mother was two months pregnant when they married, which gave her a bad start in the social life in the south. Her mother’s father and step-mother did not offer to take them in. The only family that offered to take care of mother and child was uncle Sol Warfield, who Wallis thought of as a grumpy miser. He allowed them to live with him, and provided enough money to feed them, and event ...more
Louise
Author Andrew Morton interprets the factual record to validate my impression: Wallis was an extraordinary social climber and Edward (David) never wanted to be king. They were convenient for each other and both had to live with the aftermath. Morton does not start with this thesis: it evolves through the presentation of Wallis and how she snared the needy and uncertain prince.

Wallis, by all accounts, was fun loving, and within her moribund society, considered witty. In the days when most women co
...more
David Dennington
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The intriguing story of a weak, foolish king, scorned and treated like a lap dog by Wallis Simpson. Much to the social climber’s annoyance he gave up his throne for her. As it turned out, England was better off. His brother George made a fine king, bringing about Elizabeth, who has also done a fine job during her long reign. The ex-king begged to be allowed back into the fold, while at the same time cozying up to Hitler and his Nationalist Socialist Worker’s Party. But he did not succeed. At the ...more
Sarah
Thanks to goodreads and the publisher for a free copy of Wallis in Love. This is a well-written, informative biography of someone who I find next-to-impossible to like. Kudos to the author for making this such an interesting read. Would definitely recommend to people who enjoy non-fiction and particularly biographies related to the royal family.
Simon
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was ok
There is nothing in this book that has been "untold", since people have been writing about the Duchess of Windsor for decades. She was (and remains) a woman with a lot of enemies. Wallis was also someone who accomplished nothing at all, or at least nothing that has lasted. You don't get many admirers because you dressed well, set a fantastic table and kept attractive homes. She was important from January-December, 1936, when Edward VIII was King of England. Morton challenges even that, since he ...more
Casey Wheeler
This book is an interesting read and is well written and researched. The author points out in clear detail that this was not a woman who was in love with the Duke of Windsor, but had a history of plotting and social climbing to obtain what she wanted. Unfortunately, for her, her relationship with David Windsor did not result in her becoming Queen. In many ways, her life was much less than what she had planned for herself.

I recommend this book to anyone who had an interest in the relationship bet
...more
Sandy
Mar 20, 2018 rated it liked it
I was under the mistaken impression that Wallis Simpson was a misunderstood woman who fell in love with the King of England. My eyes have been opened to the truth.

Wallis was a young girl who felt she deserved the best of everything. Men were her stepping stones to get what she wanted. She was a very selfish person who didn't care who she hurt or who she used to get what she wanted. Her very calculated way of moving up the ladder hurt many people; men who loved her and women who were her friends.
...more
Linda Lipko
Well written and interesting, this book follows Wallis Simpson from her early years through the end of her life. Vilified as the tramp who stole Edward from the throne, this book painted a different picture.

It was the future and short-lived role of King, that Edward clearly did not want. In many ways, Wallis helped rescue him, rather than how she is painted by many authors. He was a play boy who never really studied for the throne. His father in particular thought very little of him.

When her fa
...more
Grace
Feb 25, 2018 rated it it was ok
Author Andrew Morton faced a herculean task - researching and crafting a biography of a wholly unlikable public figure who often sparks vitriol in the hearts and minds of people, even today. After slogging through this book, it's clear that Morton did little more than his due diligence in researching the Duchess of Windsor's (formerly Wallis Warfield, Winn, Simpson) whirlwind of a life. There wasn't much new information. And, in the process, he did a poor job of humanizing her, but maybe that wa ...more
Laura Bray
May 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
Interesting to learn more about her. She certainly doesn't come off well here; grasping and always wanting more, ultimately unhappy. But that has always struck me about her, even with my limited knowledge.

No doubt she fundamentally changed the monarchy. But the author has an interesting position: that she actually *saved* the monarchy by removing an unapologetic Nazi sympathizer from the throne of England in the run up to and during WWII (which would have been a disaster, needless to say). I don
...more
Meg - A Bookish Affair
Feb 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
"Wallis in Love" explores the life of Wallis Simpson, the woman who changed the course of the British Monarchy. Twice divorced, she charmed Edward VIII who ended up abdicating the throne. It was supposed to be a great love story but in many ways, it seemed only to imprison Wallis and Edward. Fairy tales are not always what they seem!

I love all things related to royalty so when I heard that Andrew Morton was coming out with this book, I jumped at the chance to read it! I knew about Wallis meeting
...more
Amy
I tried and tried to get into this, but just could not. I did look at the photos and skimmed and browsed through a few sections, but the story just never caught my attention.

A couple of interesting tidbits that I picked up: In her younger years, Wallis was known as Bessie. Imagine that name for a Duchess. Also, she and the Duke were not pleased when King George declared that Wallis would not be addressed as HRH. Finally, she did not enjoy living in what I would call a fishbowl, even after Edward
...more
Jena Henry
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Before there was reality TV, and social media influencers, and before there was television, let alone the NetFlix drama The Crown, there was Wallis Simpson. How did a down on her luck Baltimore gal create the love affair of the century? She became famous for being famous through sheer force of will.

Was she a “socially ambitious viper, who would do anything, walk over anyone, to get what she wanted?” Possibly, but after reading this people-filled saga, I’m not sure even Wallis herself knew what
...more
Beth
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Judy Frey
Mar 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Judy
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it
I've read a lot about Mrs. Simpson and the Duke of Windsor, but this was a new spin.
I think there should have been a subtitle "The Grass isn't Always Greener".
Neither one of them ever thought the whole thing through. Mrs. Simpson wanted a piece of royalty and she never got it. Shunned by the Royals from the beginning did she really think they would warm up to her as soon as they married.
The Duke, I don't think he wanted to be King, but wanted the status and perks associated with it. Their life
...more
Lyn
Aug 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very absorbing well-written and researched documentary on the life of Wallis Simpson (Duchess of Windsor) and the man she truly loved.
Annie Booker
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I've never been a big fan of Andrew Morton's books. His collaboration with Princess Diana struck me more as the collaboration of 2 people each out to use each other than anything like "her true story". However, this is an excellent biography that is both fair and entertaining.
Bookish
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: biography
Wallis finally gets the royal treatment, though it’s a bit late to please her.
Laurel-Rain
Mar 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
“You have no idea how hard it is to live out a great romance." -Wallis Simpson

Before she became known as the woman who enticed a king from his throne and birthright, Bessie Wallis Warfield was a prudish and particular girl from Baltimore. At turns imaginative, ambitious, and spoiled, Wallis's first words as recalled by her family were "me, me." From that young age, she was in want of nothing but stability, status, and social acceptance as she fought to climb the social ladder and take her place
...more
Carol N
May 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Like many other young women, when growing up I thought that Wallis Simpson and Edward, Prince of Wales, were a match made in heaven. Theirs was truly a romantic marriage: however, over time I learned that although the former king worshiped the ground she walked on, the twice-divorced Mrs. Simpson was just looking to become his queen. Her whole existence revolved around elevating her social position and becoming the Queen, not loving her prince. What should have been a fairytale story with a beau ...more
Roberta
Sep 26, 2018 rated it liked it
I have read quite a few books about Wallis Simpson over the years, starting with "The Woman He Loved" by Ralph G Martin. I find her utterly fascinating, but the more I read about her, the less I like her. Along with thousands of other people, I cannot fathom what it was about her that made a king give up his throne.

This book takes a totally different tack than the others I've read. Andrew Morton dedicates this entire book to defining the relationship between Wallis and Herman Rogers, the only m
...more
Sheri
Oct 04, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, book-club
It's difficult to know, with a book like this, how to rate it. It's about people I found pitiful. And I'm unclear how to judge the writing. Such a book is judged by it's research, how well-written it is, how well sourced, whether there is new material, etc. At one point, Wallis throws herself to the ground and has a tantrum. That event isn't sourced. Where did the info come from? That's just one example, but the book raises so many questions about their relationship. How were they in private? So ...more
Connie D
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joy
Jan 05, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: k-audio-books
This was a very interesting audio-listen. I’m glad to have read it, because I didn’t know tons of detail about Wallis or the abdication. Wallis appears to have been a fascinating/complicated and not-particularly-appealing person, at least as cast in this book. It made me realize that I’m not used to reading kind of negatively-slanted biographies. (But I sensed the author was simply trying to be very fair and accurate; there was no agenda here, I don’t think. He showed both good and bad.) It also ...more
Kate
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Interesting book----not really new information but I hadn't read much about her so a lot was new to me. He has done a lot of research and one thing I did like was when he quoted people or her friends, he put them in context (were they love rivals, did they have anything to gain/lose by befriending her,etc). Part that was annoying was the typos and awkward sentences. One thing I learned was boy were those people all loose!
Kay Wahrsager
May 15, 2018 rated it liked it
A repetitive portrait of a bitter shrew - much as I expected. Truly a horrid person famous for being famous with better outfits and jewels than the Kardashian’s - also famous for being famous.
Ellen
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting reading. What a sad, pathetic life this woman chose to lead.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Combine editions 2 14 Feb 13, 2018 11:47PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Duchess: Camilla Parker Bowles and the Love Affair That Rocked the Crown
  • Jackie, Janet & Lee: The Secret Lives of Janet Auchincloss and Her Daughters, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Lee Radziwill
  • The Shadow Queen
  • The Duchess of Windsor: A Memoir
  • Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family
  • Lady in Waiting: My Extraordinary Life in the Shadow of the Crown
  • The Real Diana
  • … And What Do You Do?: What The Royal Family Don't Want You To Know
  • Christmas with the Queen
  • The Fabulous Bouvier Sisters
  • The Queen's Marriage
  • Princes at War: The Bitter Battle Inside Britain's Royal Family in the Darkest Days of WWII
  • Royals at War: The Untold Story of Harry and Meghan's Shocking Split with the House of Windsor
  • The Quest for Queen Mary
  • Princess Margaret: A Life of Contrasts
  • A Castle in Wartime: One Family, Their Missing Sons, and the Fight to Defeat the Nazis
  • The Other Side of the Coin: The Queen, the Dresser and the Wardrobe
  • The King in Love: Edward VII's Mistresses
See similar books…
237 followers
Andrew David Morton (born 1953) is one of the world's best-known biographers and a leading authority on modern celebrity. His groundbreaking biography Diana: Her True Story was a #1 New York Times bestseller, as was Monica's Story, an authorized biography of Monica Lewinsky, and Tom Cruise: An Unauthorized Biography. The winner of numerous awards, including Author of the Year, his other New York T ...more

Related Articles

There is nothing like reading a history or biography book and being so completely transported to another time and place that you find...
51 likes · 18 comments
“contumely” 0 likes
“life, she had decided that the English were not” 0 likes
More quotes…