Customer Reviews: Prince William: The Man Who Will Be King
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on June 8, 2012
I would have given Junor's latest book more stars had she been able to control her obvious bias against Princess Diana and her blatant admiration of Prince Charles. In her efforts to do her usual hatchet job on Diana she makes Prince Charles and Camilla look positively saintly. Also there were some very questionable premises that Junor presents as facts and it seems she sometimes can't help her sometimes shrill tone in her attacks on the late Princess. And she contradicts herself in the process.

Junor presents the story of Prince William from his birth to his wedding to Kate Middleton and their first few months together as a couple. She devotes the first 100 pages about William's upbringing. I found it odd that she writes: "But Diana didn't know how to be a mother...she had never been successfully mothered herself and therefore had a skewed view of motherhood." Really and how is this known? Charles complained to his biographer Dimbleby about his upbringing also but Junor never accuses Charels about his not knowing how to be a father. Obviously William and Harry don't agree with Ms Junor's statement and later on in the book William and Harry are quoted as praising their mother to the skies. Harry quoted as saying: "She was our guardian, friend and protector. She never once allowed her unfaltering love for usto go unspoken or undemonstrated." William was quoted as saying: "We were lucky to have her as our mother." Obviously Ms Junor disagrees with the two people who were raised by Diana, her sons. I think Junor in her zest to do a hatchet job disregards her sons take on their mother.

Also, incredibly Junor absolves Charles of blame for returning to his mistress Camilla Parker Bowles when the marriage was "irretrievably broken down." Junor writes "He was racked with guilt about Camilla, little knowing about Diana's infidelities, which had begun years earlier." Excuse me? What infidelities and how many "years earlier"?, Junor states this as "fact" when there is no proof that Diana had "infidelities" prior to 1986 when he started the affair with James Hewitt after Charles returned to Camilla. Plus Diana flatly denied via the Settelen tapes that she had a physical affair with Mannakee. Junor apparently has manufactured "lovers" that DIana had prior to 1986. People should read other sources to get the real picture not Junor's statement. Diana is not here to defend herself conveniently for Junor. In another inaccuracy Junor says Diana and Hasnet Khan were having an affair for two years (1995-`1997). Had Junor done more reearch she would have noticed that Hasnet Khan in an interview said they he was not intimate with Diana until after her 1996 divorce from Prince CHarles. What also struck me was Junor's rather biased take on the alleged affair Diana had with Carling. Carling Denied the affair and his wife Julia never said Diana was intimate with her husband (there was no proof). Junor of course states: "ALthough there was no proof of adultery, the public, who followed the story in the tabloids were left with no doubt that Diana had been instrumental in the breakup." Really? I was one of the public and I didn't believe Diana to blame. WIlliam was even said to have a dartboard with Julia's picture on it (this account appeared in various biographies of Diana). Of course Junor leaves this out.

Laughably Junor wries, "He may have weakneses in his haracter but Charles has never been dishonourable?? Was it "honorable" to Charles to have an affair with a fellow officer's wife? Another married woman Lady Kanga Tryon had an affair with Charles only to be put aside rather cruelly by the prince. And what man of honor marries a naive young woman knowiing full well he prefers somebody else? Also I found it a oop out for Junor to fall back on the old "Charles was prssured to marry Diana" excuse. Charles was 32 year old and old enough to make his own decisions--I think he wanted to marry Diana to have heirs and I doubt he truly "gave up Camilla" totally.

Laughably Junor seems to just shrug off the adultery of Camilla and Charles. She claims that there was only one phone call between Charles and Camilla in the firt years of the CHarles and Diana marriage. This is refuted by the account of Charles' valet Stephen Barry who stated that Charles phoned Camilla several times during the honeymoon with Diana. She also goes along with the Great Thirty Year Love Story spin--Charles actually had two other mistresses Janet Jenkins and Lady Kanga Tryon and married Lady Diana, plous was serious about several women during hte alleged "thirty year love affair." Plus how can a woman married to another man be "faithful" to her lover. Junor also claims Diana maintained that Charles slept with Camilla the night before he married her. Diana never said this in any interview--I recall James Whitaker wrote this in one of his books and Diana never claimed this to anyone: Bashir, Morton or Settelen. Junor also tries to take away the sordidness (she didn't succeed with me) of the Camillagate tape saying that Camilla was "sexy and giggly" and Charles "found in Camilla the relationship he had so much hoped for with Diana". Note to Junor: Maybe if Charles had dropped Camilla totally he would haved found the relatonship he hoped for with Diana. She also said it didn't threaten Charles fitnes to be King. I disagree, this was an adulterous relationship that Charles had had with a married woman even years before he married Diana.

She also condemns Diana for the Panorama interview but seems to give a free pass for Charles for his airing of dirty linen to his biographer and his admission of adultery. She condemns Diana for being "nasty" to Tiggy yet gives Tiggy a free pass for publicly criticizing Diana's mothering skills. She claims that all Charles did was give Tiggy a kiss on the cheek when there are other "tactile" pics of Charles and Tiggy--Charles to me went beyond employer employee relationship with the nanny.

She claims the boys "hated" the yacht vacation with AL Fayed and his family. Yet the photographs show them enjoying themselves--either they were great actors or the boys really had a good time.

When Junor finally lets Diana be (for the most part) and moves on she goes through familiar territory: William going to Eton and to Uni, his meeting Camilla (though Junor claims for the first time I doubt that) his decision to go to Sandhurst, his courtship of Kate Middleton, and his charity work. There is an inordinate number of chapters on sports patronages which WIlliam appears to be concentrating on. Junor doesn't seem to think it inappropriate for Camilla to go to the 2007 Memorial Service for Diana and Camilla "wanted to support the boys." She says it was only Rosa Monckton's public complaints that stopped her. As I recall it was not only Ms. Monckton who found it outrageous for Camilla to even think about going. She only backed out at the last minute as well.

Junor's writing of William makes him look stilted and priggish. I do agree that the labeling of William the Good Prince and Harry the bad prince is very unfair--William also appeared to enjoy the night life as much as Harry (judging by pics of him leaving clubs).

Kate Middleton's background is described--the only things missing were the Uncle Gary Goldsmith scandal and the earlier "cooling off period" between William and Kate which was resolved when Carole Middleton helped them get back together at a bonfire party.

Junor also leaves out that in the infamous Harry in Nazi uniform episode, WIlliam was with Harry to help pick out the costume. This was reported in various acounts by other authors.

Junor sings the praises of Kate saying that she is "just like Diana" and fills the void. Nonsense. Kate is her own person and a newcomer, how she does as a royal has yet to be seen--as of now she's only doing part time royal duties.

The wedding is described at length with some color illustrations included in the book.

I wish Junor could have refrained from expressing her dislike for Diana and using this as a sort of propaganda piece for Charles and Camilla. It would have made a much better book.
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on June 5, 2012
I have read a number of books about the Queen and the British Royal Family. This book is really one of the better ones, and not a quick-to-market tabloid capitalizing on current gossip. The author's description of Prince William's life, from childhood to the present, demonstrates good research and insight about one member of the Royal Family who has obviously decided to be his own man. The chapters detailing the work of the prince with his charities occupy a good part of the book and certainly give the reader a different perspective about William and the Royal Family. Rather than a salacious retelling of the problems of the Windsors, it is a serious study of the reluctant prince and his understanding of the emerging role he must assume to make the monarchy credible. I found it difficult to put down.
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on August 3, 2012
I like how the book brings a nice humanizing context to the events of Williams' life and seems to align with how William presents himself as an adult.

The sources were good and interesting like former press secretaries' for the Wales' and school masters/professors. Junor aptly points out that the undeniable fact that William had very dysfunctional parents, was old enough to know what was going on during the War of the Wales, combined with inner household turmoil the boys undoubtedly felt, and how that affected him as a person. The book sheds light on how he turned out pretty well-adjusted considering the circumstances.

It spoke volumes that one of the most upsetting photos for William was him carrying groceries home at St. Andrews. The guy really just wanted to carry groceries home and be left alone except when he is in public for official capacities. He studied at the police station at times to get some peace and quiet.

I don't think the book was Diana bashing, as in other reviews. As child of the 80's, I had Diana fever like everyone else.Though Junor focused on the Princess in a more negative light but her points were valid. Being an adult now, I appreciate that an uneducated 19 year old woman when she was married, with some clear psychiatric issues (bulimia, self harm) and an unstable childhood, Diana was probably not an easy person to live with or have as a mother, though she had an excellent public persona and did great work for charity. But Junor also points out Charles' flaws as well.

William always gravitated towards normal well-grounded people and families and that Kate Middleton helps meet that need. Being a child of parents who worked and made their fortune, she doesn't have the elitist accent and grew up in fairly normal family. It's William desire and strive toward normalcy, and clearly having learned from the mistakes of both his parents, that has made him the likeable figure he is today.
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on May 8, 2014
I am an avid reader, and I could not get through this book. The writing is poor, and there are typos. It was on sale when I ordered it, and I now know why. I am a huge fan of biographical works regarding the Windsors but this particular work was not for me.
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on July 10, 2012
As the owner of many Penny Junor's books about the British Royal Family,(and a small, personal library of 150 books about Diana and other royal family members) I was not as impressed with this book as I thought I would be. Too many errors (i.e Diana's father, Earl Spencer, died in March 1992, not 1991. Prince Charles' dog was Tigger, not Tigga. Diana's brother, Charles Spencer, celebrated his 21st birthday in May 1985, not in 1982, the year William was born.) For all her books and knowledge on the royal family, Ms. Junor should have those dates down pat. The pictures are very good, and it shows how Prince Charles stepped up to the plate to be a better father to William and Harry after Diana died.
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on July 10, 2016
1/2star actually -horrid this book which claimed and bulimia, Anorexia, and eating disorders were a unknown 30 years ago. Has she ever picked up a history book?... ANYONE Can in hindsight, write a book after the puzzle is completed. It's obvious Princes Diana is dead because Junor puts 99% of the blame on her. The arrogance and superiority sticks in your mouth ;as if she knew, and all alone cautioned them about this or that. The venom for Diana is horrid and done in poor taste as she just takes others work and puts the information in her poor attempt at a book on Prince William. Ms. Junor you do not get to rewrite history, you are hypocritical and you have failed.... Again. Stick to the facts and no one bought this book to know " hmmm wonder what Penny Junor thought of that?" You set up each example as if this was factual news when in many cases no one but the people there actually knows what happened. Keep you guess work out of this .....shameful
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on February 10, 2013
There may be some minor errors in this tome, some dates misconstrued, but Junor has known many people in royal circles (she herself was the daughter of a famous newspaper editor and went to boarding school with the Queen's daughter Princess Anne) and has met Prince William on a number of occasions. At the time his birth, she had written the first authorized biography of his mother Diana, Princess of Wales. However, she was always sympathetic toward Prince Charles especially after Diana rebelled against the Monarchy, which Penny Junor felt undermined both the well-being of Prince William and his brother Harry and the stability of the Royal Family. This is a well-researched biography which reveals what other biographers have not, and refuses to pander to the notion that Charles equals bad Diana equals good in the popular imagination. William deserved a balanced biography and its amazing that Junor had the courage to write it.
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on December 17, 2012
Although I've never been a great follower of the royal family - I didn't even watch the wedding of Charles and Diana - I found this book quite interesting, as it gave me new perspective about members of the British royalty AND the media. I gained more respect for the former and lost even more for the media, and for that matter, feel more disgust with the public for being so enthralled with news of famous folks that they buy those disgusting tabloids.
The media has led me to love William and Kate and be disgusted with Charles. While the book PRINCE WILLIAM: THE MAN WHO WILL BE KING has fueled an even higher regard for William and Kate, it has raised my esteem for Charles considerably. As a child, even as an adult for that matter, his emotional needs were seldom met. Unfortunately Diana was even more emotionally needy, hoping, perhaps expecting, to receive help from her new family to boost her feelings of adequacy. Alas, that is not the way of the royals. Without giving too much away, I feel that I gained more insight into the contemporary monarchy of Great Britain, and it is very interesting.
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on January 12, 2015
This book about Prince William seemed to be about him and Kate, but the the author had her dagger out and rey to praise Charles and cut out Diana's heart. I am not a fan of this kind of fluffy writing. It was a waste of time and money in my opinion. When looks at her other look titles, you can better understand my view. I felt like I was reading a gossip column.
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on March 22, 2013
Interesting to know this family from the early time of their lives and be able to watch them through the years to make the monarchy strong.
writer knew them well and protrayed it with feeling. Good
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