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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 22 June 2017
20 years since Di passed away this year - I find that hard to believe! It still hurts. I was only 9 back in 1997 when I heard the news on the radio and even though I knew vaguely who she was, I didn't realise the sheer gravity of the situation until I was a good bit older. 20 years on, I decided to download this book to my Kindle Paperwhite and read the Butlers version of events of her life.

It's quite a fascinating insight to the Royal Family, not just Di, but the Queen, Charles, and the Boys who Burrell worked for during his time at butler.
It's a very good read, but it's also heartbreaking to read parts and even 20 years on after Dianas death, it's hard to escape the fact she died in a car crash. Why is it always the good die so young?!! She had so much love to give, a big heart who only wanted to do good...she just wanted a normal life. Someone to love her back. Anyone! She was nothing more than a convenient brood mare to the Royal Family and then thrown to the side like rubbish. Atrocious. She went on the hunt for love and was killed as a result.

A great, but melancholic read at the same time. 5 stars from me. xxx
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on 24 December 2017
I don't think this book is a betrayal of Diana. It is abundantly clear that Paul Burrell was completely and utterly devoted to her and loved her unconditionally, but not in the sense of romance or being in love. But something that went and beyond a servant's duty and loyalty.
It struck me that he was like the family, friend , sibling , mother, father figure she never had. Someone who was there for her no matter what. Someone she had at home waiting to welcome her, at the end of the phone. A constant and reliable presence in her life. I have red some other books about Diana, including the protection officers, etc and they say she could be difficult; she was not perfect (as no one is), but Paul Burrell accepted her, warts and all, and she came to trust him. I expect as someone who was really there for her and wanted nothing in return.
Burrell does not paint himself as the indispensable and sole person in Diana could rely on ; he mentions others in her inner circle and others are named in the book. It struck me that he was an honest man. The book was not a showcase of 'me, me, me'. He does not promote himself as indispensable to Diana. He is just simply recalling their time together, without revealing any sensitive secrets or betraying Diana confidences. Mot we had read about elsewhere and in some cses he sets the record straight .
Therefore imagine the impact of her sudden death on him ( In addition to the children and closest circle). It was bad enough for the public , most of who had only ever read about her. He was the first person closest to her to arrive in paris ( together with her driver) and see her body. On autopilot, he had brought her liptick and powder compact and rosary before he set off from kensington palace; in his grief he had asked for a dress and shoes from the Ambassadors wife in paris to clothe Diana and chose something from the ambassadors wifes wardrobe himself. As he expected they might have dressed Diana in an 'awful shroud' and she would not like that he said..
He requested that Diana spend one last time at home, on the night before her funeral. So that she could go out from the front door one last time. He held an all night vigil with her coffin on his own and a priest. He prayed and talked to her all night.Utterly devastated and loyal to the end.
Then what happens? Her family turn against him in time, he gets accused of theft of her things wih tuns out to be untrue , etc...I think he had some bitterness after this and wrote this book to show the closeness he nd Diana shared, which was beijg dimissed; he was seen as just her butler.
Diana's death was a traumatic event for most, more so for Paul Burrell, who has never got over it ; additionally as he was also first on the scene so to speak to see her body before it had been properly been tidied up. He brought the clothes for her to be dressed in, the lipstik, shoes, the rosary he asked the nurse to place in her hands. The blood stained bag of cut up clothes that had been delivered to kensington palace after, which Diana had been wearing when she died. Paul Burrell received this and had to deal with this further trauma. He reports nightmares and being unable to slep in the aftermath, finding solace only at the bottom of her wardrobe, where he slept amongst Diana's clothes and scent.
Everthing he describes points to the grief, maybe even post traumatic , but , he was considered as just the butller who maybe tried to get above his station. At a time like this, who could he talk to? Only Diana's most inner circle who knew . In a different world, i think healing and grieving might have been more bearable if it had been shared with the Princes but there was no ongoing contact after her death. He was the butler, his employer hs died, so he has to find other employment. Later on, after the book hsd been written, he declined a private request to meet Prince William. You have to read the book for context.

In conclusion, i don't think he's betrayed Diana. Now others , including former protection officer, body guard, private secretaries, have written books. Burrell probably knew her best and there's a lot unsaid and that will probably go to the grave with him. If the princes want to know more about their mother,thay should make contact with him. Its unlikely Diana's name is mentioned in the Royal household.
A separate book or analysis by an appropriate psychologist should be written about the unique perspective ,grieving and trauma that Burrell underwent in the aftermath of Diana's death. Unique as it was world- wide grief and Burrell was not a family member but just as grief stricken yet could not openly share it with the world or the trauma he underwent in those first few hours, days, months, years because of confidentiality/ discretion May explain a lot of things, inluding the effect on his family.
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on 14 August 2013
The only betrayal I see is that of her own family, namely the Earl who offered her a refuge and then took it away, and her family who decided to change her last Will, albeit that Mr Burrell benefitted from the change, what gives someone the right to change a deceased's persons will just because they don't agree with some of the contents. Furthermore they then proceeded to a court action against him based on little evidence.

I say we'll done to Paul for penning an account of his time in service. Just maybe the hierarchy were not happy with him revealing how the households are run, but it is very interesting to read how it all functions and comes together. It's not a job I think I would like to do.

He gives what I feel is a very balanced picture of Princess Diana without giving away any secrets at all. Not once is Dr. Khan mentioned, but since the revelatory books and film by other authors have been published it is possible to make a connection to some of what he has not said. There again there may be some one else that only he knows of and good on him for not doing a kiss and tell all.

I do wonder, as has someone else though, whether he had fallen in love with her.

He also appears to acknowledge that he could have been considered as getting to big for his boots and not knowing his place, but only two people truly know the status of his relations to Princess Diana, Paul himself who has revealed a little in this book, and Princess Diana who is not here now. Some choose to believe he has made it all up, I choose to believe that in the main it is in all probability a good factual account. Maybe some has been embellished a bit, maybe not, but I do think there a truthful foundations. There are those of her supposed friends who state that he could not have had such close relations with the princess in the manner he describes, and that they had never seen any evidence of it being the way he describes. All I can say is, were they with her 24 hours a day and observing her all the time. Just because they did not see it, doesn't mean it wasn't so, no more than they say it couldn't have been that way.

An enjoyable read.
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on 23 August 2017
A very,very well written book that I read originally in 2003 but felt the need to buy again and re read at this sad 20 year anniversary of Princess Diana's death,Paul Burrels writing lets you 'into' dear Diana's world from start to end,it makes you feel you know her and how she spent her days,her sons lives too as children and gives an enormous insight into the inside and running of the castles and palaces by the staff she lived and stayed in.Lots of information too on other Royal family members and their lives,it really is an amazing book written by someone who in the press appears to be ridiculed for reasons that baffles me,perhaps the truth hurts !
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on 11 October 2012
I was in two minds as to buy this book or not but I felt it only fair to read what the author had written and I am so glad that I did. I am sure that Paul Burrell has written an honest account of his life with the Princess and I also feel that Diana herself would have approved of the book and the way in which it is written. The author obviously only ever had the Princess's well-being at heart and I don't think he would ever have done anything to hurt her or her memory.

Back Cover Blurb:
The untold story behind one of the most sensational chapters in the history of the House of Windsor. Paul Burrell fought to clear his name. Now he reveals startling new truths about Diana, Princess of Wales - and presents for the first time as faithful an account of her thoughts as we can ever hope to read.
He was the favourite footman who formed a unique relationship with the Queen. He was the butler whom the Princess of Wales called 'my rock' and 'the only man I can trust'. He was accused of theft, then acquitted following the historic intervention of the monarch. He was the princess's most intimate confidant - and is the only person able to separate the myth from the truth of the Diana years.
Now, at last, Paul Burrell cuts through the gossip and the lies and takes us closer to the complex heart of the Royal Family than ever before.
It's the story of how a boy from a coal-mining village came to swap terraced streets for gilded palaces. It's a story of shocking secrets, absolute power and unlikely alliances, told through firsthand insights and astounding material, including previously unseen letters and photographs. It's a story that will rewrite history and stand alone as the archive of Diana's time as a royal. It is a moving tribute from a faithful subject to the two remarkable women he served.
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on 1 November 2015
This was an 'En-lightening' book to read, although somewhat surprising!! I have always been of the opinion, that Princess Diana, was the 'Wrong Girl, - in the Wrong Place, - at the Wrong Time!!' She was so completely overwhelmed by, the attention paid to her by Prince Charles, at a time when she was just becoming an Adult, in an Adult world, that she was carried along by a tide of emotion that she could neither control nor understand. It seemed as if, no-one had explained to her, that the Prince merely needed an heir, and she would be the right kind of girl to provide him with one, or more preferably two, and then he would just go back to his old ways, with his older friends, knowing that he had done his job, and so had she!! She was a really needy person, who could not call on her husband for the support and help, and ultimately the kindness and care that she expected, due to the differences in their ages and characters, and so she turned to the one person 'who could'!! Paul comes across, as a person - who understood - listened - and in return asked for nothing except her attention, and so it seemed to me - that they became -' Real Friends'!! She had met some-one, who was prepared to listen, and to share the secrets, and the fun of a 'Beautiful Young Woman', who had blossomed and shone in a world, that she could not control, and who had left her Husband behind in the shadow of her Glow!! The Court Case, to which Paul was subjected, was only brought about by the jealousy and peek of a Family, that could not cope with the fame and love that the public showed to their sister, and so out of pure spite, tried to blacken his name. Only for the truth to come out - in the end! I was somewhat shocked to read about the reaction of her brother, when Diana had called on him for help, which he seemed to give and then withdraw, for no good reason, and then at her funeral to give the speech that he did, and which at the time seemed to express all our feelings for the Princess. Only then to find out that they were not on the best of terms, immediately before her death. This, I think, needs to be more widely understood. But, all in all, I found this to be a book of great interest, and ultimately an extremely believable explanation of a close and very 'Special Friendship.'
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on 15 June 2016
A well written insight into the royal life and its family problems. Like any normal family, divorce, fighting, back stabbing, dislike of certain family members goes on, but not under the spotlight of the media 24 hours per day. It's interesting to know how a back room staff are moving information around the royal house hold without it being known. Serving someone's every need at the expense sometimes of your own family is a bit odd, but this is what Paul Burrell did with a some what obsession. He got closer to this inner circle than probably he should have done, but still kept secrets where they should be and that's secret. He also told some home truths which he found out have not so nice consequences. Upsetting some members of Britains top house hold has its price. The book is a big tribute to princess Diana and her memory, but also a good look at the inner workings of the royal family.
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on 8 June 2016
I decided to remember the princess via this, and other writings I have recently found. Paul Burrell's name was one I remembered, but I couldn't immediately think why.

I've enjoyed reading his account of the jobs he's had with our Royal Family, and how it all started.

I have a brother who was once Head Chef on the QEII ship, so any news of what might happen on board would always be interesting. There's no description of anything like, here, but there's a wealth of info on life as a Royal servant.

Brilliant.
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on 13 March 2017
An interesting insight into the royals and the traumas Diana had to endure.Thank goodness she had Paul Burrell. The men in grey suits who seem to control so much,sometimes without royal knowledge have a lot to answer for. Diana,s Spencer family seem an uncaring lot ,keen to cover up this fact and feeling their privileged upbringing allows them to behave badly.
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on 30 January 2017
I always thought Paul Burrell had been treated very badly ,,,by the press .. and Prince Charles. I enjoyed reading this book and am so glad I did as it cleared up various mysteries .The witch hunt by the police and CPS makes me very worried .
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