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4.6 out of 5 stars45
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 22 March 2014
Hardman, Robert. Our Queen

I was rather put off by the cosy title, but found this popular book more and more compelling as it progressed. It’s a book not only of interest to royal watchers but the general reader.
It must be difficult for any researcher invited to peruse the royal family’s private papers and private lives to give an objective portrait, but Hardman does pretty well. Andrew Marr’s comprehensive though somewhat hagiographic account of the Queen’s life did the job well too, but Hardman’s book supplies an abundance of intimate detail and scores of glossy pictures that show a perpetually smiling monarch shaking hands with dignitaries, beaming at crowds, and just occasionally dutifully solemn in her robes.

This is a book for anyone who is remotely interested in what goes on, both on parade and backstage. The ceremonies and processions are meticulously detailed, the clothes, the carriages, the protocol, the cock-ups, right down to the sweepers of horse manure.
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When I purchased this book, it was primarily as a gift for a friend in the USA, who is sooooooo interested and loyal to our Royal Family. He loves anything about them and I thought he would enjoy this book.

Whilst I did not read it cover to cover, given that it was a gift, I did dip in and out of it and found it to be very interesting indeed. There is a wealth of information within and gives a real insight into our Diamond Queen and her life.

It does make a great gift and a great book to have as part of our British heritage and the fact that our Queen is a huge part of the history of our Monarchy.
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on 30 October 2011
I purchased this book as an Australian wanting to know more about our Queen. Well, I have gone from a person who thought of her as reserved and aloof to being an outstanding human being who has compassion and is just like you and I. A great book that is well written and easy to read.
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on 23 January 2012
I thought it would be good to read a new book about the Queen in her diamond jubilee year. It must be difficult, after almost 60 years, to write anything new about her but the author has still managed to make the book interesting. It must also be difficult to write about this world famous Head of State who has never given an interview and who never publicly discloses what she really thinks. (How on earth does she do that?) To anybody who thinks that the Queen 'does nothing' and 'why do we need her?' I say, read this and you will find out. Robert Hardman has also managed to write about HM and her duties without 'fawning' over her: I do hate biographies which idolise the subject! 'Our Queen' was a really good read and I couldn't leave the book alone until I had finished it.
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on 2 April 2012
I have read so many books concerned with royalty and I used to subscribe to the magazine 'Majesty' years ago, this book is the one that tops the lot. The author is no sycophant but does seem to have a real affection for his subject. The book is full of rich insights and amusing anecdotes with some interesting comments and asides by members of the Royal family, politicians and members of the household. It also gives the lie to any who might think that the Queen has an easy life with little to occupy her time.

Before reading the book I was a monarchist with a small 'm', now, however, after reading this book the initial letter is a capital one.

If you purchase this book you will not be disappointed. It is a good read and it is a valuable source of information about a person who emerges as someone whom we are fortunate to have as our sovereign. It is not at all staid in presentation but proves to be a delightful read.
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on 22 November 2011
This is a very good read it is well produced and the content was very interesting. I got it very quickly and while it is not something you would expect to find hard to put down it is in fact hard to put down.
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on 15 June 2013
Over the years I have read many books about the Royal Family and this ranks among the best.

It is well written and full of interesting anecdotes about life within the royal household. I loved the bit about the man who cleans up the horse exhaust!!

I would thoroughly recommend it.
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VINE VOICEon 17 April 2012
Thoroughly enjoyable, well written and interesting account of Her Majesty's life and reign. While not an authorised biography, Robert Hardman has included many homely and fascinating snippets of detail, interviews and comments from family and individuals close to her. Along with a good range of photographs, the book shows how hard the Queen works,her immense sense of duty and a sensible, down to earth and caring approach to life, family and her subjects. Mr Hardman's account succeeds in showing her in a very human light and not as an unreachable individual living in a privileged position with nothing to do all day. I would not want her job or life under any circumstances and I think this country is very fortunate to have a Monarch who has such a strong moral compass, loving and supportive husband, and an amazing work ethic.
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on 24 May 2013
Her Majesty is not my Queen, yet I've held Her in deepest for ages. "Our Queen" satisfies my curiosity and lets my know, albeit not in person (pity!), this remarkable Lady a bit better. Great reading even for foreigners.
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on 5 March 2014
What a lovely gift, especially as I'm to be honoured next month as a recipient of the Royal Maundy money. There are so many aspects of the Queen's life covered in this book and it's a thoroughly good read.
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