Even amongst my friends and relatives, very few know of my fascination with royalty, especially the British royalty. I have no idea why I have such a fascination with them, nor do I know when it started.
By no means am I an expert on the British royal family but I can spout off facts about them most don’t know nor care about. For instance, did you know Queen Victoria was her husband’s first cousin? Or that she became queen when she was a wee child? Believe me when I say my esoteric knowledge of the British monarchy has won at trivia games numerous times. And it’s not just the British royal family. All of the ruling elite of Europe have been under my keen eye for decades. I can tell you, though, it’s been going on forever. I can spend hours on Wikipedia looking up royals.
Queen Victoria has always held a special place of fascination in my mind. I read books about her whenever I can. And about her kids. And her grandkids. And great-grandkids. And so on.
A few weeks back I picked up the book Queen Victoria: From her birth to the death of the Prince Consort by Cecil Woodham-Smith. I’ve been steadily trying to read it but haven’t gotten very far for one reason: Ms. Woodham-Smith is incredibly detailed. So detailed I can only read a couple pages at a time. Her book is so packed full of information digesting it all takes some time.
In the meantime, I’ve been reading Victoria’s Daughters by Jerrold M. Packard. I found it fascinating.
Packard discusses each one of Victoria’s daughters — Victoria, Alice, Helena, Louise, and Beatrice — in a readable and enjoyable prose. He provides details about each of the princesses but not to the point of debilitating the reader.
I found this book to be wonderfully enjoyable. I learned a lot about the princesses and their relationships though I feel as if the author held back some. Of course, Packard used sources (well documented) that didn’t tell the whole truth.
My fascination has only been fueled some more so I will continue reading about the British royal family, especially those during the Victorian, Edwardian, and … um … Georgian(?) years.