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Prince Charles Audiobook

Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life

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Publisher's Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of Elizabeth the Queen comes the first major biography of Prince Charles in more than 20 years - perfect for fans of The Crown.

Sally Bedell Smith returns once again to the British royal family to give us a new look at Prince Charles, the oldest heir to the throne in more than 300 years. This vivid, eye-opening biography - the product of four years of research and hundreds of interviews with palace officials, former girlfriends, spiritual gurus, and more, some speaking on the record for the first time - is the first authoritative treatment of Charles' life that sheds light on the death of Diana, his marriage to Camilla, and his preparations to take the throne one day.

Prince Charles brings to life the real man, with all of his ambitions, insecurities, and convictions. It begins with his lonely childhood, in which he struggled to live up to his father's expectations and sought companionship from the Queen Mother and his great-uncle Lord Mountbatten. It follows him through difficult years at school, his early love affairs, his intellectual quests, his entrepreneurial pursuits, and his intense search for spiritual meaning. It tells of the tragedy of his marriage to Diana; his eventual reunion with his true love, Camilla; and his relationships with William, Kate, Harry, and his grandchildren.

Ranging from his glamorous palaces to his country homes, from his globe-trotting travels to his local initiatives, Smith shows how Prince Charles possesses a fiercely independent spirit and yet has spent more than six decades waiting for his destined role, living a life dictated by protocols he often struggles to obey. With keen insight and the discovery of unexpected new details, Smith lays bare the contradictions of a man who is more complicated, tragic, and compelling than we knew - until now.

With a preface read by the author.

©2017 Sally Bedell Smith (P)2017 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Prince Charles is an 18th-century gentleman with a 21st-century mission. His love of tradition combines with an outlook that can be bracingly avant garde. Sally Bedell Smith captures his contradictions and his convictions in this fascinating book that is not just about a man who would be king, but also about the duties that come with privilege." (Walter Isaacson)

"For all we know about Prince Charles, there is so much we didn't know - until now. Sally Bedell Smith has given us a complete and compelling portrait of the man in the shadow of the throne. It's all here, from the back stairs of the palaces to the front pages of the tabs. Read all about it!" (Tom Brokaw)

"No one writes about life at the top with more panache than Sally Bedell Smith. Her Prince Charles is a delicious blend of glamour and grandeur, jealousy and rivalry, greatness and human foible. Smith writes with wisdom and sympathy - and a sharp and knowing eye - about the struggles and maturation of the man who would-be king." (Evan Thomas)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (75 )
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  •  
    Amazon Customer Lutz, FL, United States 04-08-17
    Amazon Customer Lutz, FL, United States 04-08-17 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An instant classic"

    Audible does it again. This same narrator also narrated the author's biography of Elizabeth the Queen in 2012 as well as Tina Brown's The Diana Chronicles in 2007. She does an equally excellent job on Sally Bedell Smith's superb biography of H.R.H. Prince Charles. I've waited nearly a year for this and it was more than worth it. Wonderful audio commentary.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Simone 04-25-17
    Simone 04-25-17 Member Since 2016

    Follow me on Goodreads too!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The "Green" Prince"

    I love reading about the British Royal Family, and when it comes to today’s crop it’s been a while since I’ve read anything recent. When it comes to Charles, most of the books have all ended on a “but will they ever get married” note. Clearly, they did.

    It was an interesting bio, despite the zillions of books and documentaries I’ve seen I still felt like I learned something new about Charles… like for example: to what extent he is passionate (obsessed?) by environmental issues. I always knew it was an interest of his, but I didn’t know just how Green he is! Good for him.

    I’d recommend this book to anyone curious about his life, it was a very complete biography.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Bowie, MD, United States 05-05-17
    Linda Bowie, MD, United States 05-05-17 Member Since 2012

    Amazon Fan

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    "Prince Charles, A Story About His Life and Loves"

    If you are a fan of royal family stories, you will like this book and you need to read it since eventually (unless he dies before the Queen) he will be King. This book is thorough and while in parts the author sounds like she is trying to make Charles more likeable, the facts are all there. The fact that he was born first in line means he must be trained in the ways of a ruler. As a young man, he might be accused of tilting at windmills and trying to get involved in issues that he has no knowledge but his heart is in the right place. The author obviously had the approval of the Prince and the Queen to be able to tell about feelings and emotions of Charles, Diana, and Camilla. It is a years long story of Charles and how he evolved, how he was distraught over Diana's obviously unhappiness, and how he handled it all by shutting down and maintaining his routines. He comes across in places as a stuffy, behind the times, eccentric but with a good heart. It couldn't be easy to be in the spotlight with a beautiful wife but not truly with her in spirit or philosophy. The love of his life he met when he was 21 and it wasn't until he was in late middle age that he was able to publicly let is be known. The whole book is told with honesty and with the ever present knowledge that one day he will be King and must not do anything to jeopardize his reputation. William and Harry are introduced as bright and well rounded young men, who did not suffer the same stilted growing up that Charles endured. I very much liked the book and was pleased when Charles and Camilla were recognized wholeheartedly by the Queen and have some happiness with each other. The next few years will be interesting. The Queen is 91 but she is still healthy and engaged and has no plans to step down. In fact she says she took this job for life.

    Rosylan Landor does a good job as narrator.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Angela Indianapolis, IN 04-25-17
    Angela Indianapolis, IN 04-25-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Overall good, but long winded"

    This book was ok overall, however, it went on and on about the most boring things. There is very little about the family that isn't already generally known. The bulk of content is about the Prince's charity work and interests in architecture, organic farming, gardening, and alternative medicine. I didn't find those sections very interesting.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
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    Mat CARBONDALE, IL, US 05-01-17
    Mat CARBONDALE, IL, US 05-01-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Well written"

    Well written and informative. Great resource for anyone interested in the subject; but performed by the worst narrator I've heard. Dropped to four stars because of this.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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