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Summary

The official biography of Queen Mary, grandmother of the current queen, originally commissioned in 1959 - with a new foreword by Hugo Vickers.

When Queen Mary died in 1953, James Pope-Hennessy was commissioned to write an official biography of her - unusual for a Queen Consort. Queen Mary's life, contrary to popular belief, was essentially dramatic, and she played a far more important and influential role in the affairs of the British monarchy than her public image might have otherwise suggested. Using material from the Royal Archives, private papers and Queen Mary's personal diaries and letters, Pope-Hennessy's biography was a remarkable portrait of a remarkable woman and received rave reviews across the press. 

Long out of print, this new edition of Queen Mary will be accompanied by a new foreword from royal biographer and writer Hugo Vickers.

©2020 Estate of John Pope-Hennessy (P)2020 Hodder & Stoughton Ltd

What listeners say about Queen Mary

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Top Notch - Fascinating and Entertaining

I really enjoyed this one. I was thrilled to follow the twists and turns in the fascinating life of Princess May/Queen Mary. She lived a particularly interesting life, and this book allows one to experience some of it.

One little issue that some may have is there are quite a few times when French or German is quoted, for example from a Royal person's correspondence or journal. No English translation is ever given. My rusty school-girl French, and hardly better German, just about allowed me to guess what was meant (I hope!) and in most cases it is not really an issue if one didn't understand at all. But it is a bit of a potential negative for many listeners.

The narrator is very clear and pronounces the numerous names and locations properly (something that many Audible narrators seem to have problems with). A couple of times I wasn't sure whether he was still quoting something or had returned to narrating and this probably should have been made clearer.

I listened to the full length in just a few days because I really couldn't stop! I have always been interested in Victorian-era royalty, but hadn't read much about Queen Mary before. This was exactly what I needed!

Highly recommended. An extremely well narrated book, by an amusing, knowledgable and fascinating author.

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Absolutely brilliant.y


What a joy to listen to this biography,interesting the whole way through,I really felt I knew Queen Mary as we moved through her life.there are some recent members of the Royal Family..initials H and M. who could take an example from this regal woman...who knew the real meaning of the word duty..not utter selfishness.

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Wonderful

Bereft to have finished this wonderful book. Beautifully written and thoroughly researched, the best biography I have read for a long time. It’s age only added to it.

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Journey into a world gone by

I was uncertain if this was a book for me. I was prepared to return it after a few chapters and ended up enthralled.
A book which took you through years of history back into Victorian times, through WE1 and then WW2. Through four monarchs and some of the politics surrounding them.
The portrait of a queen but more than anything the portrait of a human being showing that like all of us even in the circles of royalty we all experience the fun, the pain, the pain and the joy of living.
Wonderfully written it showed just how special Victoria Mary of Teck was.
I suspect I will listen to this a few more times in the years to come.

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Enjoyed every minute

Beautifully written book and perfectly narrated. Couldn’t recommend more highly to those interested in Royal biographies.

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an excellent biography

what an amazing life! Excellent biography and the narrator of the best! Thank you.

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Fascinating and hugely enjoyable.

I have always wanted to know more about this remarkable lady and have found this to be very informative and extremely entertaining. I don't remember her but through this I feel I have learned a lot about her. Thank you.

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Brilliant from beginning to end.

I first read this book about thirty years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. The luxury of now having it read to me by the brilliant Gareth Armstrong was lovely. James Pope Hennessey's classic has lost nothing in the intervening years. The witty style still amuses and, although a republican, my admiration for this remarkable woman has only deepened. If you've never read the book, read it... and if you've read it before, listen to it again.

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Brilliant from start to finish

Approached this expecting to be disappointed, as so many of the so-called 'classic' biographies have seemed to me to be either overtaken by new scholarship or a written in an anacronistic style. In the case of this biography however the classic status it has attained is more than justified.

Some of it has dated with the release of new papers etc, but considering it was researched and written less than 6 years after Queen Mary's death I found myself astounded at the level of insight and detail. Beautifully written and structured this listener found himself amazed at actually feeling myself transported to the world of pre WWI european royalty, and being able to distinuish between the sheer number of Grand Dukes and Serene Highnesses,

Queen mary comes alive in this book and and the listener truely gains an understanding of how she came to be the indefatigable martiarch of the House of Windsor. A must listen for anyone interested in not only royalty but in a masterpiece of a biography of a woman whose influence can be seen everyday in the person of her grandaughter Queen Elizabeth II

Also even if you are not a monarchist this is a great listen and is supprisingly funny and moving at times and is fully deserving of its place in the panteon of great biographies

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A wonderful story

Excellent level of research, a very 360 biography. A pleasure to listen to, I learned so much.