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Not the best of the royal diaries...
on October 11, 2005
I was disappointed in this book.
I found that the author introduced some interesting historical facts and then failed to follow through on these in favour of a more simplistic storyline. For instance, Elisabeth is chosen by the Emperor over her older and(arguably more suitable) sister, to be his wife. This is something I would have liked explored. The strain some of the realities of royality puts upon regular family roles. Yet, the author glances over this and has Elisabeth focus on more mundane and stereotypical things like fashion and her weight.
A second storyline, only hinted at in the book, is the hypocritical stand of the Emperor's mother towards her future daughter-in-law. Since this woman also played a domineering and cruel role in Elisabeth's future (rearing her grandchildren in place of Elisabeth and even naming the grandchildren, this would have been an interesting story.
What I like most about the Royal Diaries series is that these books tell us about the privileges and responsibilities of princesses. It is easy for young girls to imagine princesses have it easy but these diaries demonstrate that this is not always true: while princesses typically live a life of luxury, they also have to live up to (and under) royal responsibilities.
I think Elisabeth of Hungary had a better story to tell in the royal diaries rather than the trite, stereotyped nonsense that this author settled for! As I said, I was disappointed.