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Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life

af Sally Bedell Smith

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
19610108,715 (3.51)1
"Sally Bedell Smith returns once again to the British royal family to give us a new and authoritative look at Prince Charles, the oldest heir to the throne in more than three hundred years. This vivid, eye-opening biography--the product of four years of research and hundreds of interviews with palace officials, former girlfriends, spiritual gurus, and more--is filled with fresh insights into Charles's life, in and out of the public eye. [This book] brings to life the real man, with all of his ambitions, insecurities, and convictions. It begins with his lonely childhood, in which he struggled to live up to his father's expectations and sought companionship from the Queen Mother and his great-uncle Lord Mountbatten. It follows him through difficult years at school, his early love affairs, his intellectual quests, his entrepreneurial pursuits, and his intense search for spiritual meaning. It tells of the tragedy of his marriage to Diana; his eventual reunion with his true love, Camilla; and his relationship with William, Kate, Harry, and his grandchildren. Ranging from his glamorous palaces to his country homes, from his globe-trotting travels to his local initiatives, Smith shows how Prince Charles possesses a fiercely independent spirit and yet has spent more than six decades waiting for his destined role. His life is dictated by protocol, yet he often struggles to obey it. He seeks influence and authority, yet he lives perpetually in the shadow of his mother and the beloved next generation of royals. With keen insight and the discovery of unexpected new details, Smith lays bare the contradictions of a man who is more complicated, tragic, and compelling than we knew, until now. This is the first authoritative treatment of Charles's life that sheds light on the death of Diana, his marriage to Camilla, and his preparations to take the throne one day. Drawing upon hundreds of sources, many of whom are speaking on the record for the first time, [this book] is the surprising and definitive portrait of the man who will be king."--Jacket.… (mere)
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Engelsk (9)  Hollandsk (1)  Alle sprog (10)
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A clunker of a book, with over 500 pages of dining, whining, partying, complaining, inability to stay on one path -- Prince Charles of England

I thought some of the book was noteworthy, and I learned a lot about the authors perception of British politics, there was a lot of rambling, title changing, and down-right disdain of Diana, Charles ill fated marriage to a woman much younger, much more spontaneous and loving abilities that Charles clearly lacked.

Camilla Parker Bowles was a meddler. As Diana noted, "There were three of us in the marriage; it got quite crowded."

Camilla learned the nuances of Charles', she knew he needed to be first. Unlike Diana who had a bright-star personality, Camilla is very content to garden, look at books of fabric swatches, and listen, listen to this ever whining personality.

Newspapers reported that Charles needy personality was off scale. People knew he had a self centeredness that would hinder his ability to lead the nation.

Much of the book revolved around the love between Camilla and Charles. When they married, they knew each other well, they were both in their 50's when they married, and Camilla was very pleased to simply hold his hand and listen to him.

I found it interesting that he started many projects and renovations of historical buildings, only to not follow through.

Sadly, he even remarked that there were too many photo opportunities for son William and wife Kate Middleton.

Charles is a sad man. Hopefully, he will not inherit the throne. ( )
  Whisper1 | Dec 19, 2020 |
This was somewhat boring. The author is bizarre and uses a lot of sexism to define Diana and racism in how the Prince of Wales interacts with POC. Its cringeworthy.
Charles has a lot of racist liberal tendencies. He thinks that 'primitive' people, POC, who practice their traditional religions instead of Christianity or Islam are more spiritual than 'modern' also known as white men. It's cringeworthy and probably shouldn't be in print. His fascination with traditional medicine is made much of in the book but again is par for the course in this cringeworthy narrative. Modern medicine has incorporated many aspects of so called traditional medicine, those that are found scientifically to work. The authors discussion of traditional medicine as practiced amongst people of color is just chock full dog whistle and colonial racism. This is published much too recently to not simply be a reflection of the authors own racism and internalized sexism.
Also the author hates Diana. I am not a huge Diana supporter ( )
  LoisSusan | Dec 10, 2020 |
This book proves once again that the grass is not necessarily greener on the other side of the railroad tracks. And it makes me thankful that the American Founding Fathers had the foresight to bar official recognition of nobility. ( )
  JoeHamilton | Jul 21, 2020 |
This book is a very comprehensive biography about the life of Prince Charles. There is so much more to him than the average person sees on the surface. Sally Bedell Smith provides the reader with an insight on just who he is – not on the public face that most of us here in the United States see on television or in our newspaper.

The Prince is a very complex person. It is interesting to learn how his early life shaped his personality and to see how he can wallow in self-pity one day and throw himself head first into a cause that he feels strongly about on the next. He walks a fine line with his public stance on political issues as that is not in keeping with the role of the monarchy.

No book on the monarchy, especially one devoted to the Prince of Wales, would be complete without touching on his marriage to Diana. This book covers the subject well. Of course, his relationship and marriage to Camilla is also carefully explored.

I appreciate the author’s inclusion of information related to succession to the throne. It explains the chain of hierarchy and the complications if the role is passed through any reason other than the reigning monarch’s death.

I received an Advance Reader’s Copy from the publisher in a giveaway. I am not required to write a positive review, or even write a review at all. However, this book is well worth the read for anyone with an interest in Prince Charles or the Royal Family.
( )
  catchat | May 26, 2018 |
Biografie Prins Charles ( )
  huizenga | Jan 19, 2018 |
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"Sally Bedell Smith returns once again to the British royal family to give us a new and authoritative look at Prince Charles, the oldest heir to the throne in more than three hundred years. This vivid, eye-opening biography--the product of four years of research and hundreds of interviews with palace officials, former girlfriends, spiritual gurus, and more--is filled with fresh insights into Charles's life, in and out of the public eye. [This book] brings to life the real man, with all of his ambitions, insecurities, and convictions. It begins with his lonely childhood, in which he struggled to live up to his father's expectations and sought companionship from the Queen Mother and his great-uncle Lord Mountbatten. It follows him through difficult years at school, his early love affairs, his intellectual quests, his entrepreneurial pursuits, and his intense search for spiritual meaning. It tells of the tragedy of his marriage to Diana; his eventual reunion with his true love, Camilla; and his relationship with William, Kate, Harry, and his grandchildren. Ranging from his glamorous palaces to his country homes, from his globe-trotting travels to his local initiatives, Smith shows how Prince Charles possesses a fiercely independent spirit and yet has spent more than six decades waiting for his destined role. His life is dictated by protocol, yet he often struggles to obey it. He seeks influence and authority, yet he lives perpetually in the shadow of his mother and the beloved next generation of royals. With keen insight and the discovery of unexpected new details, Smith lays bare the contradictions of a man who is more complicated, tragic, and compelling than we knew, until now. This is the first authoritative treatment of Charles's life that sheds light on the death of Diana, his marriage to Camilla, and his preparations to take the throne one day. Drawing upon hundreds of sources, many of whom are speaking on the record for the first time, [this book] is the surprising and definitive portrait of the man who will be king."--Jacket.

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