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The Palace Diaries: Twelve Years with HRH Prince Charles [Paperback]

Sarah Goodall MVO , Nicholas Monson
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Mar 2007

Sarah Goodall spent 12 years working for Prince Charles as a Lady Clerk from 1988 to 2000 - the period during which his marriage to the Princess of Wales broke down amid a frenzy of media attention.

Her experiences of life behind the scenes of the Royal Establishment have inspired this hilarious story of a naive and rather accident-prone young woman whose dreams all came true when she was given the opportunity to work for the heir to the throne.

Sarah gets herself into numerous compromising situations, both at work and in her personal life, but she manages to establish a good rapport with her Royal employer. When the fairy tale comes crashing to an end, however, not even a final dramatic encounter with Prince Charles can save her from the axe.

The Palace Diaries is an entertaining romp of a read that will delight and intrigue in equal measure.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Mainstream Publishing; New edition edition (1 Mar 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845962222
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845962227
  • Product Dimensions: 2.1 x 13.2 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 410,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A really, really good read" (Sharon Osbourne)

"Racy, outrageous and hilarious - it's the most surprising book of the year" (Mail on Sunday)

"Offers a lively portrait of everyday life in the royal family . . . forthright and personal" (Scotland on Sunday)

"Hilarious . . . a must-read" (Big Spender)

Book Description

A Bridget Jones-style account of life working for Prince Charles

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Palacial stories 30 Oct 2009
This book, based on Sarah Goodall's twelve years' worth of experience working as a 'Lady Clerk' for Prince Charles is an amusing read if you've an interest in the royals and their strange little ways. Sarah herself comes across as a 'Hooray Henrietta' type of person who likes to have a swift drink and a laugh, which is no bad thing but it ultimately leads to her downfall. The detailed accounts of her work, her undeniable hero-worship (which borders onto hagiography) of the Prince is slightly nauseating at times but she's tempers it with a self deprecating wit which belies her intelligence at times. Actually Sarah's fluffiness is fairly amusing at times and her naivety of believing that Sir Jimmy Saville could be the Princess of Wales's father is very funny indeed.

She does include a fair account of her love life during these twelve years which seem very busy indeed! I kept imagining a hoard of Gordon Gekko types as her `outsider' boyfriends as well as the fine, upstanding heterosexual members of staff she loved to hunt, which juxtaposes nicely with her time at Balmoral. She's clearly no fan of Diana, whom she refers to as either the `Bossette' or `The Nation's Number One Fashion Icon' mainly because her immense loyalty to the Prince makes her feel that way but she's a little inappropriate in what she thinks whilst standing by her coffin in my opinion. After her eventual dismissal from the Palace, she seeks an audience with her hero, the Prince, but there are cross wires and he believes that she's referring to the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease! All in all, it's an easy book to read if you've an interest in such matters and it'll probably raise a smile or two during certain chapters.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Too big for her boots! 2 Jun 2007
By Freddie
This book left me with a feeling that having worked as a Lady Clerk to the Prince of Wales was just an excuse for the author to write all the gory details about her love life.

If this had been written factually it may have been a better read. I found the inconsistencies - complaining about being poor on Palace wages but then frittering all the money her father sent her for a flat on clothes etc - irritated me, as did her apparent disregard for others feelings. There are too many episodes of this to give examples!

Having finished it (just) I have learnt next to nothing about the Royal Family (certainly nothing new) but loads about the love life, finances and social life of someone I have no interest in at all.

If you are looking for a book which gives an insight into life working at the periphery of the Royal Family this is not it. If you are looking for a book about a Lady Clerk who got a little too big for her boots (to be fair, she does at least admit that), then this is it.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A light-hearted look at The Royals... 19 Oct 2006
The Palace Diaries is both interesting and humorous. If you are keen to have a light-hearted look at what 'allegedly' goes on behind Royal doors...then give this book a read.

I am sure Ms Goodall has many more juicy stories to tell regarding her time with The Royals! Maybe a follow-up at some point?
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sort of interesting! 7 Oct 2006
Just finished this book. I thought it was a really sad book. There are some interesting and funny parts but I felt that Ms. Goodall was really holding back and not telling the full story out of fear perhaps of the Royal family? The back stabbing that goes on is chilling.

She nauseatingly gushes over and grovels at Prince Charles' feet. And although she tries to kiss Camilla's feet too (why not-if you can't beat them, join them) in the end it did not do her any good.

It was very disturbing her thoughts as she stood by Princess Diana's coffin - something to the effect of "Good-bye you strange woman!

Her sexcapades were pathetic and it was really sad how she dumped 2 or 3 lovely boyfriends and ended up alone with her memories!

There is a hilarious part where she arranges a meeting with the Prince two months after she had been canned. She says that she is very upset at what happened and the clueless Prince thinks she is talking about the recent Foot and Mouth epidemic among the cattle! Good reading for a long, rainy day!
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1.0 out of 5 stars One Star 11 July 2014
By eamonn
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
stupid book!
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4.0 out of 5 stars The real royal family 3 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a fascinating insight into the life of wealth and privilege that the heir to the throne has. I liked the behind the scenes insight into life at the royal palaces. I did not like the emphasis on sex of the author, surely there must have been better things to report on.
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5.0 out of 5 stars loved it 6 Dec 2013
By suzi
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
would definitely recommend this book. loved the inside gossip and had me giggling to myself in parts. very interesting and didnt want this book to end!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Made me cry with laughter 25 April 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Great fun - a very light hearted look at what can happen when an all too innocent middle class girl unexpectedly finds herself caught up in the glorious royal panoply.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars tell tale tale
rather too much about the writer, didnt enjoy the salacious details
Published 14 days ago by Dora
5.0 out of 5 stars Palace Diaries
Really enjoyed this book and couldn`t put it down. A great insight into the workings of Buckingham Palace.
Published 28 days ago by Chris D
4.0 out of 5 stars The Palace Diaries
I enjoyed reading this book.Once started I needed to finish it.It is the first book about the Royal Family I have chosen to read as I usually prefer fiction or books to do with... Read more
Published 8 months ago by LYNNB
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read
This book was a great insight into the relathionship between Prince Charles, his secretary and the inner workings of palace life. Read more
Published on 24 Oct 2011 by Springboy
2.0 out of 5 stars Gossip Style
This book reads like a pupil's essay. It's entertaining but literary at freezing point. If you're into reading a book within 2 hours and not wanting to have your brain active, it's... Read more
Published on 15 April 2010 by Galileo
1.0 out of 5 stars How did this ever get published?
Oh dear. The crime here is not that this woman cannot write for toffee, it is that she apparently had 'professional' help writing such a terrible book. Read more
Published on 14 Sep 2009 by Meridian Blonde
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny but sometimes over the top
Bought this recently at a reduced price. Obviously the title was intriguing. Found the whole book funny and light-hearted, sometimes a bit too much information of her sex-life. Read more
Published on 7 April 2009 by Anlon
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't bother with this
Don't bother to buy this unless you like very bad writing, a woman who is so 'into' herself and delights in filthy descriptions of her sex life. Read more
Published on 9 Aug 2008 by L. Chappell
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