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on 17 September 2017
Really interesting read! A subject I knew hardly anything about. It was a very enlightening, moving book.
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on 27 July 2014
Until I read this book Prince Leopold was just a name in the list of Queen Victoria's children. Although I was aware that the hereditary disorder, haemophilia was passed through her to a number of her descendants, this book really gave some insight into the suffering this young man endured. At a time when little was known about the disease and no effective treatment available, his life was further restricted by the strict regime of the Victorian royal household. The often difficult relationship between Victoria and her children only shows what a courageous and determined personality Leopold had. The book is well researched and well written.
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on 23 January 2014
Within the last year a series of three programmes was done on TV about Victoria and her children and my reaction at the time was What a b.... awful mother she was. Her treatment of Leopold and his condition was horrific. I enjoyed reading the book but was rather surprised that the author did not give much in the way of details of what happened to his wife and children after his death. That would have been interesting and would have filled out the picture. The details of his life and influences seemd thorough and well researched. He seemed to have a great many qualities which could have been put to good use in all the areas in which he had an interest. A very interesting read.
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on 2 February 2014
I'm very fond of the British royal family, they're an institution and life would be incomplete without them. But I have to admit that my knowledge of history, and least of all, the Royal family tree, is at best shoddy. Until recently Victoria was the longest reigning monarch and despite this I really knew little about her at all, she was a shadowy figure of disapproval. I could not have told you how many children she had, let alone anything about them. So this book, concentrating predominantly on her youngest son Leopold, shared stories and photos from family, Court and state archives. it is very
well written, and engaging, with a sorrowful end but still a very entertaining and informative book. I would recommend it to any age group interested in British royal, social and foreign history.
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on 30 January 2014
An absorbing read. It is easy to warm to prince Leopold and appreciate just how much he achieved in his tragically short life. No doubt the several Victoria parks are as a result of his influence rather than that of his monstrous mother. I hadn't appreciated that Claremont had been a royal household and that it exists now only as a National Trust garden, the house having been demolished to make way for a housing estate that was never built. Astonishing to realise (from the Notes) that even though there was a doctor in attendance his death was probably not due to the haemophilia and was probably preventable. It is a shame that the family trees, in the Kindle edition, are too small to read, even with a magnifying glass.
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on 22 July 2014
This was a really interesting insight into the life, and lifelong struggle, of the youngest of Queen Victoria's sons. His battle not only with his health but also with a mother who could not envisage that any of her children might do, think, want or say anything that she did not choose for them is fascinating. The writing is clear and seems (not my period) well researched with good use of diaries and letters from the protagonists and from their advisers, friends and staff.

I got really involved with this - more so than most history - cheering on Leo as he won small victories and getting angry with QV's more appalling insensitivities.
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on 24 January 2014
The book shone a light into lesser-known aspects of Victorian history and the Queen's family life and its repercussions for her monarchical role. The writer contextualizes with a framework of constitutional history, international politics and socio-cultural history without ever overwhelming the biographical narrative. Plenty of reference material for those wanting to delve further. A really enjoyable, well-pitched account.
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on 5 February 2014
This biography is fascinating. It brings to life Prince Leopold in a sensitive way, showing his strengths, determination and ability to live with a disabling and little understood medical condition. It also gives insights into the character of his mother, Queen Victoria and especially her vulnerability which resulted in possessiveness over Leopold and her misplaced trust in the highland servants.
There are historical facts, quotes from documents of the time all woven into a fast moving story.
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on 10 September 2014
A very clear and concise look at the life of a very poorly young man who has almost disappeared without trace. This book sets the record straight and also gives an insight into his mother's world and from a different aspect. A short and tragic life. difficult to relate to as times were different then and nobody who was there and following events would be alive today.
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on 30 September 2014
Although I've read several books about Queen Victoria, there had been few in-depth details about Leopold. This piece was very insightful and paints a much broader picture of the queen's family. In this book, I began to realize the sadly controlling nature of the Queen over her youngest son. The book was, at times, very tedious with far too much mundane detail that detracted from the story. Overall, a good read if you have an interest the family of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.
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