A collection of the best books on the British Royal family. Andrew Morton, prince of royal biographers, author of the groundbreaking Diana: Her True Story, and Meghan, A Hollywood Princess, recommends The Queen by Ben Pimlott as the most interesting portrait of the current Queen. For a picture of the Queen’s younger sister, Craig Brown’s recent biography, Ma’am Darling: 99 glimpses of Princess Margaret offers an original and entertaining take on royal biography as a genre.
On the next generation of the royal family, Morton and the historian and biographer Robert Lacey both recommend The Diana Chronicles by Tina Brown as the best biography of Diana, particularly for a US audience. Royal Journalist Katie Nichols recommends Charles and Camilla Portrait of a Love Affair by Giles Brandreth. For the younger generation, she recommends William and Harry by Ingrid Seward and Kate by Claudia Joseph as good introductions.
Robert Lacey recommends the biography of George V (the current Queen’s grandfather) by Kenneth Rose as a great read, and Hugo Vickers concurs that it is one of the best royal biographies. Lacey also recommends Crown and People by Philip Ziegler, which charts the evolution of popular support for the monarchy in the democratic age.
Memoirs actually authored by members of the royal family are few and far between. But the current Queen’s aunt, Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester, did write her memoirs, and royal biographer Hugo Vickers recommends them as both insightful and entertaining. Princess Alice died at the age of 102 in 2004, so she will have known almost every member of the royal family in the 20th century.