Friday, December 16, 2016

VICTORIA By Daisy Goodwin

Victoria is an absolutely captivating novel of youth, love, and the often painful transition from immaturity to adulthood. Daisy Goodwin breathes new life into Victoria's story, and does so with sensitivity, verve, and wit.”
–– Amanda ForemanNew York Times bestselling author of Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire and A World on Fire, and 2016 Chair of The Man Booker Prize

From the author of the acclaimed novels The American Heiress and The Fortune Hunter and the creator and writer of the forthcoming PBS/Masterpiece drama Victoria comes a brilliantly imagined and researched story of a young woman about to make her mark on her country—and the world:  VICTORIA (St. Martin’s Press, Nov. 22nd, $26.99).

In 1837, less than a month after her eighteenth birthday, Alexandrina Victoria – sheltered, small in stature, and female – became Queen of Great Britain and Ireland. Many thought it was preposterous: Alexandrina — who took the name Victoria upon her ascension — had always been tightly controlled by her mother and her household, and was surely too unprepossessing to hold the throne. 

The men who run the country have doubts about whether this tiny teenager can be the ruler of the greatest nation in the world, and her mother and uncle have their own designs on who will hold the ruling power.  Yet from the moment William IV died, the young Queen startled everyone with her self-possession and innate grace: insisting, for the first time in her life, on sleeping in a room apart from her mother; resolute about meeting with her ministers alone.

The Prime Minister, Lord Melbourne, became Victoria’s private secretary. Perhaps he might have become more than that—though old enough to be her father, he is the first person to take her seriously. To him she is “every inch a queen.”   Everyone argued she was destined to marry her cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. But Victoria had met Albert as a child and found him stiff and critical: surely the last man she would want for a husband….

Drawing on Victoria’s diaries as well as her own brilliant gifts for history and drama, Daisy Goodwin brings the young queen even more richly to life in this magnificent novel.

My Thoughts…

Wow, who knew a history lesson could be so incredibly entertaining.      I fact checked a couple things in this book just to see how close to true history it was and it was spot on.   Yet, I did not feel like I was reading a history book.     Daisy Goodwin must have done an amazing amount of homework to be able to tell the story so true to Queen Victoria’s life.  If the miniseries that is going to be released in January 2017 is anything like Victoria, the book, I cannot wait to watch it.    

I knew nothing about Queen Victoria when I picked up my copy of Victoria by Daisy Goodwin so I had no idea what her history was or how the book would end.     I devoured her story.     The descriptions of the era, room, dresses, even hairstyles made the book play out as I read it.     With each description I read I could easily picture more and more of the life that the Queen was living.      The interactions with the other characters in the book were equally wonderful.     I enjoyed watching Victoria grow for a young girl who was unsure of what her reactions should be in situations to a strong Queen who was able to make her wishes known and they were followed without question.  

As I learned more and more about the history of the time I found myself wanting to know more about the other characters.     Victoria’s mother was interesting.   While I could not agree with the way she raised Victoria, I do believe that she loved her daughter and was trying to do what was right by her.     Lord Melbourne is someone that I would have loved to know more about.   His history and his future are questionable and I only hope he was able to find happiness again.       There are so many wonderful secondary characters that I would love to know more about.  

Book Links

Amazon   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes and Noble  

More praise for VICTORIA and Daisy Goodwin:

“Highly recommended...Bestselling Goodwin always draws in fans.”
Booklist on Victoria

“Ms. Goodwin writes deliciously.”
–Janet MaslinThe New York Times

“A shrewd, spirited historical romance with flavors of Edith Wharton, Daphne du Maurier, Jane Austen,Upstairs, Downstairs, and a dash of People magazine...Superior entertainment.”
–Kirkus Reviews (starred) on The American Heiress

“A luxurious indulgence...Goodwin writes with effortless grace, and her dialogue's subtle wit is delightful.”
–Booklist on The Fortune Hunter

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