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Queen Elizabeth II: Her Life in Our Times [Hardcover]

Sarah Bradford
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
RRP: 20.00
Price: 17.01 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

6 Dec 2011

Elizabeth II has lived through the Abdication, the Blitz and World War Two, the sex and spy scandals of the swinging sixties, the Cold War and the nuclear threat and the Fall of the Berlin Wall. She has known 11 US Presidents including JFK and Ronald Reagan, and other world leaders like President Mandela and Pope John XXII. Her Prime Ministers have ranged from Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher to David Cameron, the last only ten years older than her grandson.

Her own family experiences, a mixture of happiness and crisis, weddings and divorces, and, in the case of Diana, violent death, have been lived in the glare of tabloid headlines. More than 2 billion people watched the wedding of her grandson Prince William to Catherine Middleton in 2010 shortly before she made the first State Visit to Ireland by a British monarch for 100 years. Our world has changed more in her lifetime than in any of her predecessors': the Queen has remained a calm presence at the centre, earning the respect of monarchists and republicans. How has she done it?


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Viking (6 Dec 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067091911X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670919116
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 374,911 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Sarah Bradford is a historian and biographer. Her books include Cesare Borgia (1976), Disraeli (1982), winner of the New York Times Book of the Year, Princess Grace (1984), Sacherevell Sitwell (1993), Elizabeth: A Biography of Her Majesty the Queen (1996), America's Queen: The Life of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (2000), Lucrezia Borgia (2005) and Diana (2007). She frequently appears on television as an authority on her biographical subjects and as a commentator on notable royal events. She is currently working on a full scale biography of Queen Victoria. She lives in London. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Her Life In Our Times 1 Jan 2012
Format:Hardcover
I have read a few books on the life and times of our Queen. This seems to be an amalgamation of an earlier, superior biography written by Bradford. It's badly written, personal to the point it is subjective with a sting, and generally a poorly researched booked which leaves a bitter taste in your mouth. Don't buy - it's awful.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Errors galore! 9 Mar 2012
Format:Audio CD
Like others, I was very surprised at the number of errors in this book. The author claims to have read Shawcross's biography of the Queen Mother. If she did so then how did she get the part on the Queen Mum's honeymoon so wrong. The Duke & Duchess of York didn't go on safari to Africa in 1923, they went to Polesden Lacey near Dorking (not much in the way of big game there!). The Nahlin in which Edward VIII cruised in 1936 was not an Admiraly yacht but privately chartered from Lady Yule.

As a "Coventry kid" I was most annoyed at the information on the Coventry Blitz. Bradford says it took place on the day after Princess's Elizabeth broadcast on 13 October 1940. No, NO NO! It took place one month later on 14 November 1940 and Coventry had a population much greater than 47,000 stated in the book. It's a City not a small town. If Sarah Bradford had an editor who checked this book before publication, I would recommend that she fires him or her and get the book properly checked before the paperback version is published.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Keith_Joseph HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The Queen has been in power spanning fourteen UK Prime Minister's terms of office, two more than Queen Victoria, and she has presided over a total 157 prime ministers from all the realms she has been or is head of state. Plus during her lifetime there was the second world war and the dismantling of the British Empire, with her mother being the last Empress of India and Britain going from a world super-power back to a small island monarchy once again. So perhaps it's little wonder this audio CD of the Queen's life and times spans 10 CDs and lasts 10 hours 40 minutes. Only problem is that the Queen doesn't give interviews and much of her state affairs are highly confidential, so a lot of the narration in this audio CD tends to be list of relatively trivial, although not uninteresting, family facts and a lot of people's names and places visited.

The book starts with the death of Elizabeth's father George VIth at 56, and her ascension to the throne while she was holidaying in 'Treetops' in Kenya. The narration then goes back to Elizabeth's happy 'us four' childhood and skips through the Queen Mothers early life, when her shy husband wasn't expected to become king. I have to say that Phyllida Nash does a good job of reading Sarah Bradford's book, so it doesn't get boring, and I found the narration easy to follow. One thing I really missed was the lack of pictures you'd get with the hardbound book or a TV documentary, but for the visually impaired this book does have a lot of interesting information. Personally I'm not too bothered if there is the odd error, as there is a heck of a lot of info here, but the book is a bit straight laced, very respectful and lacks funny anecdotes, so it all comes across as a bit dour.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not what i expected 15 Dec 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I was very disappointed with sarah bradfords book .I had read her book on diane and enjoyed it .To me this is just a rewrite of her earlier book on the queen .Our Queen which i read prior to this gave fresh insights of the queen this did not
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mostly well told, but with room for improvement 6 April 2012
By Bob Sherunkle TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
[To alleviate any confusion, this review is of the 2012 audio book.]

HM must sometimes have felt, as Turner did about art, that monarchy is a "rummy business". Sarah Bradford goes some way towards explaining how the Queen has successfully lived through so many changes, both political and personal.

The title "her life in our times" is an exact description; the Queen's life is, very properly, set in the context of UK and world history. Bradford gives the Queen full credit for adapting to the rapid changes in the world and in her life since, at the age of ten, she unexpectedly became heir apparent to the British monarchy. (The first CD is devoted to the period up to the coronation of George VI, and sets the scene for a Princess' future as Queen.) Most of us would recognise that her strength of character and a rock-solid marriage to the fiercely supportive Prince Philip have been major factors in her success, and Bradford gives these due coverage. However, she draws out a third cause, that the Queen has an excellent understanding of the nature of constitutional monarchy; consciously following her father's example, she has made good use of her Bagehot. (Bradford suggests that, in this aspect, the Queen's understanding was well ahead of Tony Blair's.)

There is good treatment of the Queen's relationship with most of her Prime Ministers; this included some surprises for me, especially that she rated Wilson highly; I had always assumed that she would prefer Tory politicians. Inevitably, the most compelling episode is the Thatcher years; Bradford disputes the popular view that Thatcher often acted as if she were the Queen, but then quotes several of the anecdotes which tend to support this view.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic insight into the life of our Queen
This is a fantastic insight into the life of our Queen. It starts when she is a little girl, revealling the influence of her mentors such as Queen Mary, her grandmother, who taught... Read more
Published 21 months ago by The Kinniburgh Kid
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I drive a lot throughout the day and not knowing too much about our Monarch, decided to give this a go instead of the radio. Read more
Published on 17 Jun 2012 by LittleReader
3.0 out of 5 stars Bleurgh.
Let me make myself clear. I have listened to the Alan Tichmarsh audiobook that interleaves H.M.Queen's life with world events. It was 4 CDs and was surprisingly enjoyable. Read more
Published on 7 Jun 2012 by R. A. Caton
4.0 out of 5 stars Queen Elizabeth
In this jubilee year, this audio book comes very handy as it provides excellent historic and biographical background and understanding of what it takes to live a life as a monarch. Read more
Published on 25 May 2012 by badger
5.0 out of 5 stars classy
This became a gift for my great aunt whose eyesight isnt the best these days so she enjoyed this on every level, its a book read with poise and purpose and she said it was... Read more
Published on 17 May 2012 by sean paul mccann
4.0 out of 5 stars Good material, but ten discs gets fiddly
This is a fascinating and well written account of our Queen's life with thorough research, told in an easy, flowing style. Read more
Published on 26 April 2012 by sam155
5.0 out of 5 stars Queen Elizabeth II
This is a history of Queen Elizabeth II. It starts with history of her parents and grandparents, so long before she was born, which gives you a good background. Read more
Published on 21 April 2012 by P. A. Ward
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent car journey piece
As a frequent and daily long distance traveller I can recommend this as a lovely hot cocoa and listen" read" It has brought back so many memories and indeed taught me much along... Read more
Published on 20 April 2012 by avid british reader
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting audiobook... but not overly detailed or researched
Interesting audiobook by acclaimed Royal author, and read by Phylida Nash.
It has the odd new fact, but to be honest the subject matter is so well written about that this has... Read more
Published on 19 April 2012 by Mr. Philip Harkins
3.0 out of 5 stars Queen Eliz Her Life in our Times
The best book on HM The Queen is by Robert Hardman & others fine it difficult to compete with the quality & style of this book. Read more
Published on 17 April 2012 by David Shaw
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Hope the book is more accurate than the blurb 0 22 Aug 2011
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