- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster (September 3, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1476733813
- ISBN-13: 978-1476733814
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 167 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #308,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Daughter of Empire: My Life as a Mountbatten Hardcover – September 3, 2013
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Lady Pamela’s memoir will appeal to those who like to take a peek into the lifestyles of the royal and famous. Underneath the glamour and glitz, this brief autobiography has a bit more substance, since Hicks was the daughter of Lady and Lord Mountbatten, cousin-in-law to Queen Elizabeth II, and an eyewitness to and a participant in some of the most momentous events of the twentieth century (especially from a British perspective). Of special note is her description of life in India during the transition to independence and her role as lady-in-waiting to the Queen during the royal world tour of 1954. Rather than exercising the “poor little rich girl” approach popular with many emotionally neglected daughters of fortune, Hicks adopts a more sanguine tone, reveling in the rich texture of her life and experiences. --Margaret Flanagan
"Joyously entertaining...In what is arguably the poshest book that ever has or will be written, Hicks remembers it all with immense charm, wit, and brio, capturing a bygone world of country estates, glass cigarette holders kept in a petticoat pocket, sapphire-studded powder compacts, dials on bedroom doors turned to indicate when you'd like to be woken with tea and biscuits, and enough pets to populate an exotic zoo....entrancing." (The Daily Beast)
"If you are addicted to "Downton Abbey," chances are that you will relish Daughter of Empire, a British aristocrat's memoir of her childhood and coming of age…. Her contribution—and it is a valuable one—is to provide the personal details that make history come to life. She writes in a natural, conversational style, with a wry sense of humor. She is also a keen observer of a way of life now vanished, except on PBS.” (The Wall Street Journal)
“Think Wodehouse with an R rating…Hicks has a talent for the telling detail and can deliver a line with an appealing and often amusing briskness.” (Chicago Tribune)
“Are you still recovering from royal-baby fever? Counting down the days until the newest season of “Downton Abbey”? A new memoir, Daughter of Empire, by Lady Pamela Hicks — whose father was Lord Louis Mountbatten, whose cousin is Prince Philip and whose great-great-grandmother was Queen Victoria — may be just what you need.…Lady Pamela presents an honest yet blithe portrayal of her famous, eccentric family and offers a glimpse into the inner circle of Britain’s royalty.” (The Washington Post)
"Fascinating, fizzy." (Harper's Bazaar)
"Not many people remain who can tell stories like Lady Pamela Hicks...." (Vanity Fair)
“More thought-provoking than some titles that have trickled out during the current popularity of TV’s “Downton Abbey.” This memoir has, along with personal narrative, a good helping of history – of a certain sort, told through the eyes of one very well-placed woman. To call Lady Pamela Hicks’s position a front-row seat is an underestimation of her vantage point; more to the fact, Hicks was a participant in many of these events. … And so, for its historical sweep and its uniquely vantaged window onto many important moments of the middle of the last century, Daughter of Empire is something for “Downton” fans – and even others interested in England, class and monarchy – to look out for.” (The Buffalo News)
"The story of Lady Hicks, who lived the kind of life we think of as only existing in books and movies, with nannies, governesses and all the trappings of the English elite....Many fans of Downton Abbey will certainly enjoy it." (Kirkus Reviews)
“Lady Pamela’s memoir will appeal to those who like to take a peek into the lifestyles of the royal and famous. Underneath the glamour and glitz, this brief autobiography has a bit more substance, since Hicks was the daughter of Lady and Lord Mountbatten, cousin-in-law to Queen Elizabeth II, and an eyewitness to and a participant in some of the most momentous events of the twentieth century (especially from a British perspective). Of special note is her description of life in India during the transition to independence and her role as lady-in-waiting to the Queen during the royal world tour of 1954. Rather than exercising the 'poor little rich girl' approach popular with many emotionally neglected daughters of fortune, Hicks adopts a more sanguine tone, reveling in the rich texture of her life and experiences.” (Booklist)
“A life filled with celebrity-like happenings delivered with impeccable taste. Revealing, yet properly reserved.” (Historical Novels Review)
"Pamela Mountbatten has had a front row seat at many extraordinary historical events and, as this wonderfully entertaining memoir shows, the privilege has not been wasted on her. Her wry, intimate portraits of royals, politicians, and Hollywood stars are a joy to read." (Zoe Heller)
"This is a book which will give pleasure to everyone who reads it." (Antonia Fraser)
“Imagine Downton Abbey meets Oscar Wilde. Now read Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten by Pamela Hicks, one of the most intimate accounts of turbulent domestic life in the shadow of world-altering events. . . . Two beautiful people, many continents, World War II, lots of distractions, and even more name-dropping. . . . What’s not to love?” (India Today)
"A glance at court life from the Mountbatten perspective. . . . Lady Pamela's portrait of her upbringing by two remarkable parents is affectionate and spirited." (Daily Telegraph)
“A jolly romp.” (Tatler)
“A uniquely intimate glimpse of the Queen few really know. In this captivating memoir, her cousin reveals a playful and surprisingly emotional woman.” (Daily Mail)
"She writes . . . with charm, geniality and a sense of humor." (The Spectator)
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Top customer reviews
Before reading the book, I had cynical views regarding the intelligence and usefulness of members of the British royal family. I didn't think that they were bright, wise, deep or particularly literate, or that they acted with good social purpose.
Reading this book blew those preconceptions out of the water... and to me, any book that changes my opinion with facts is a worthwhile book. In addition this book is a delightful and engaging read.
Lady Pamela Hicks writes colourfully and beautifully about her life in England and in diplomatic service outside the UK - with incisive depth and humour, and surprising modesty and lack of class snobbery. My favourite part of the book deals with her diplomatic work in India in the late 1940s, at the time of partition and the creation of Pakistan.
Read this book!
There isn't really enough additional detail added to any point in her life to warrant this book, unless you haven't also already read India Remembered.