Elizabeth the Queen: The Woman Behind the Throne

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9780718158651: Elizabeth the Queen: The Woman Behind the Throne

In this magisterial new biography, New York Times bestselling author Sally Bedell Smith brings to life one of the world’s most fascinating and enigmatic women: Queen Elizabeth II.

From the moment of her ascension to the throne in 1952 at the age of twenty-five, Queen Elizabeth II has been the object of unparalleled scrutiny. But through the fog of glamour and gossip, how well do we really know the world’s most famous monarch? Drawing on numerous interviews and never-before-revealed documents, acclaimed biographer Sally Bedell Smith pulls back the curtain to show in intimate detail the public and private lives of Queen Elizabeth II, who has led her country and Commonwealth through the wars and upheavals of the last sixty years with unparalleled composure, intelligence, and grace.
 
In Elizabeth the Queen, we meet the young girl who suddenly becomes “heiress presumptive” when her uncle abdicates the throne. We meet the thirteen-year-old Lilibet as she falls in love with a young navy cadet named Philip and becomes determined to marry him, even though her parents prefer wealthier English aristocrats. We see the teenage Lilibet repairing army trucks during World War II and standing with Winston Churchill on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on V-E Day. We see the young Queen struggling to balance the demands of her job with her role as the mother of two young children. Sally Bedell Smith brings us inside the palace doors and into the Queen’s daily routines—the “red boxes” of documents she reviews each day, the weekly meetings she has had with twelve prime ministers, her physically demanding tours abroad, and the constant scrutiny of the press—as well as her personal relationships: with Prince Philip, her husband of sixty-four years and the love of her life; her children and their often-disastrous marriages; her grandchildren and friends.
 
Compulsively readable and scrupulously researched, Elizabeth the Queen is a close-up view of a woman we’ve known only from a distance, illuminating the lively personality, sense of humor, and canny intelligence with which she meets the most demanding work and family obligations. It is also a fascinating window into life at the center of the last great monarchy.

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Review:

A Letter from Sally Bedell Smith

As a five-year-old, I first glimpsed Queen Elizabeth II on the black and white screen in my parents’ mahogany television cabinet in 1953: a glamorous ingenue draped in gleaming robes and wearing a glittering crown during her coronation in Westminster Abbey. Two generations later, children watched her as a proud and bespectacled grandmother in the same majestic setting during the wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton.

For sixty years, the Queen has been a constant presence as the longest serving head of state--iconic, distant, mysterious, dutiful--the only person about whom it can truly be said that all the world is a stage.

I first met her in 2007 at a garden party at the British ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C. In a spirited conversation with my husband about the Kentucky Derby, she showed the animated gestures, sparkling blue eyes and flashing smile familiar to her friends but rare in public. I remembered what British artist Howard Morgan had told me after painting her portrait: “Her private side took me totally by surprise. She talks like an Italian! She waves her hands about.”

Nine months later I began my three year exploration of the Queen’s epic life. I was determined to make her accessible, to bring readers into her world and show that private side in an intimate and humanizing way. I also wanted to explain how she has been so successful in her unique role, and how she became “the sheet anchor in the middle for people to hang on to in times of turbulence,” in the words of David Airlie, her lifelong friend and former senior adviser.

As a woman I was intrigued by how she thrived in a man’s world, juggling her roles as dedicated professional as well as wife and mother. I also wanted to describe for the first time her close relationship with the United States--her eleven visits, five of them private, and her friendships with an array of fascinating Americans including all the presidents since Harry Truman--except Lyndon Johnson, who desperately tried to meet her.

There seemed to be a surprise around every corner: her physical courage when she was attacked by a wounded pheasant and charged by “dive bombing colts,” her compassion while mothering a teenaged cousin who had been nearly killed in a terrorist attack, her earthiness while crawling on her belly stalking deer, her joie de vivre while blowing bubbles at a friend’s birthday party, her fierce reaction to one of her top advisers in the days after the death of Diana, her tenderness toward Margaret Thatcher during the former prime minister’s 80th birthday party.

After two years of research and interviewing, it took another year to write the Queen’s story--to weave together the threads of a life of richness and variety with a great cast of characters both famous and little-known. I hope the result will enable readers to immerse themselves in her life--from the grouse moors of Scotland and kitchen tables of her friends to the state banquets and time-honored pageantry, where even in the middle of the solemn ritual of her coronation, the Archbishop of Canterbury could sneak the 27-year-old Queen sips from a hidden flask of brandy for a pick-me-up.

About the Author:

Sally Bedell Smith is the author of  bestselling biographies of William S. Paley; Pamela Harriman; Diana, Princess of Wales; John and Jacqueline Kennedy; and Bill and Hillary Clinton. A contributing editor at Vanity Fair since 1996, she previously worked at Time and The New York Times, where she was a cultural news reporter. She is the mother of three children and lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband, Stephen G. Smith.

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Sally Bedell Smith
Editore: Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom (2012)
ISBN 10: 0718158652 ISBN 13: 9780718158651
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Descrizione libro Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2012. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. An intimate portrait of Her Majesty the Queen, from the moment a young Princess Elizabeth discovered her destiny to becoming our longest-serving monarch nine decades later. This definitive biography of Queen Elizabeth II is the first all-round, up-close picture of one of the most fascinating, enigmatic and admired women in the world. With exclusive access to the Queen s personal letters, close friends and associates, this intimate biography is a treasure trove of fresh insights on her public persona and her private life. Here we see Queen Elizabeth going about her daily duties, preparing for formal occasions, playing with her children at the Palace, crawling on her stomach to stalk deer, donning yellow Marigolds to wash up after Balmoral cookouts, and even changing a car wheel. Here we, at last, get to meet the leader, strategist, and diplomat; the daughter, wife, mother and grandmother - Elizabeth the Queen. Codice libro della libreria APG9780718158651

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Sally Bedell Smith
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Descrizione libro Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2012. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. An intimate portrait of Her Majesty the Queen, from the moment a young Princess Elizabeth discovered her destiny to becoming our longest-serving monarch nine decades later. This definitive biography of Queen Elizabeth II is the first all-round, up-close picture of one of the most fascinating, enigmatic and admired women in the world. With exclusive access to the Queen s personal letters, close friends and associates, this intimate biography is a treasure trove of fresh insights on her public persona and her private life. Here we see Queen Elizabeth going about her daily duties, preparing for formal occasions, playing with her children at the Palace, crawling on her stomach to stalk deer, donning yellow Marigolds to wash up after Balmoral cookouts, and even changing a car wheel. Here we, at last, get to meet the leader, strategist, and diplomat; the daughter, wife, mother and grandmother - Elizabeth the Queen. Codice libro della libreria APG9780718158651

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Descrizione libro Penguin 2012-02-02, 2012. Condizione libro: New. Brand new book, sourced directly from publisher. Dispatch time is 24-48 hours from our warehouse. Book will be sent in robust, secure packaging to ensure it reaches you securely. Codice libro della libreria NU-GRD-04816477

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Descrizione libro Penguin, 2012. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. BRAND NEW ** SUPER FAST SHIPPING FROM UK WAREHOUSE ** 30 DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. Codice libro della libreria mon0000275515

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Descrizione libro Penguin Books Ltd. Paperback. Condizione libro: new. BRAND NEW, Elizabeth the Queen: The Woman Behind the Throne, Sally Bedell Smith, This is an intimate portrait of Her Majesty the Queen. As we celebrate her Diamond Jubilee, this brand new biography of Queen Elizabeth II is the first all-round, up-close picture of one of the most fascinating, enigmatic and admired women in the world. With exclusive access to the Queen's personal letters, close friends and associates, this intimate biography is a treasure trove of fresh insights on her public persona and her private life. Here we see Queen Elizabeth going about her daily duties, preparing for formal occasions, playing with her children at the Palace, crawling on her stomach to stalk deer, donning yellow Marigolds to wash up after Balmoral cookouts, and even changing a car wheel. Here we, at last, get to meet the leader, strategist, and diplomat; the daughter, wife, mother and grandmother - Elizabeth the Queen. Codice libro della libreria B9780718158651

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Descrizione libro Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Not Signed; An intimate portrait of Her Majesty the Queen, from the moment a young Princess Elizabeth discovered her destiny to becoming our longest-serving monarch nine decades later. This definitive biography of Queen Elizabeth II is the first all-round, up-close picture of one of the most fascinating, enigm. book. Codice libro della libreria ria9780718158651_rkm

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Descrizione libro Penguin Books Ltd, 2012. PAP. Condizione libro: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Codice libro della libreria CP-9780718158651

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