Gayla Bassham's Reviews > Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch

Elizabeth the Queen by Sally Bedell Smith
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's review
Jan 31, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: 2012-reads, src-summer-2012
Read from July 05 to 07, 2012

This is not great literature by any means, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's not terribly thought-provoking, but perfect for summer: a non-fiction beach read. It is very pro-monarchy, pro-Elizabeth, and not a little anti-Diana, so if any of those things will bother you I would stay far far away. But if you can let your republican tendencies go for a bit, this is an entertaining and ultimately touching portrait of a mostly unknowable woman.

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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Kat (new)

Kat Warren I'm tempted by this one. Not so much for the subject as the writer. Sally Bedell Smith wrote one of my all-time favoratie biographies, can't recommend it highly enough: "Reflected Glory: The Life of Pamela Churchill Harriman."

Gayla Bassham I had never read any of Smith's books before. If I hadn't just been reading this book for fun, I would have some issues with it -- I think Smith pretends to know more than she actually knows; she has this cozy insider tone even when talking of things that I think she mostly got from press clippings. And her obvious bias toward Elizabeth and by extension, Elizabeth's family leads to, for example, an excruciatingly one-sided description of Charles and Diana's marriage. But the book was a page-turner.

message 3: by Kat (new)

Kat Warren Good to know, Gayla.

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