History is not about understanding the past for the sake of it, it’s about understanding human nature, says the historian and novelist Ian Mortimer.
She became the heir to the British throne because her uncle had resigned and became Queen Elizabeth II aged just 25, after her father’s early death in 1952. The royal biographer Robert Lacey considers Elizabeth Windsor (1926-2022), her family history, her legacy and what made her so successful as Britain’s titular head of state.
The author of The Maid and the Queen takes us on an enjoyable ride through European history, looking at well-connected women who outwitted their husbands or asserted their independence.
Women’s historical role in politics wasn’t always as limited as we might assume. Medieval historian Helen Castor tells us about powerful women in British history and how they were constrained or conspired against.
Hugo Vickers talks about what makes a good royal biography, and how he helped Helena Bonham Carter prepare for her film role as the Queen Mother
Bestselling celebrity biographer Andrew Morton recommends the best books on the British royal family and the publishing of his own book, Diana, Her True Story—In Her Own Words, viewed by many as the definitive book on Princess Diana.