Thursday, August 18, 2011

William and Catherine Their Story by Andrew Morton

Oh dear, another Andrew Morton book!  One would think Morton, who wrote Diana: Her True Story, would have given up the royal ghost a long time ago.   Surely, he has mined every source, every nugget of information for his royal books!  

Wait a minute,  no decent source is going to feed Morton a worthwhile piece of information.   The doors are closed, no one is going to talk to Andrew Morton.  Check the acknowledgements in the back of the book.  He references people such as Patrick Jephson,  good for the past, good for one more Diana quote, but the sources are woefully inadequate for a book about William and Catherine, their story and their wedding,

Let's be honest.  Apart from what has been released by the press and uncovered by the media, we know very little about the former Catherine Middleton.  She remains an enigma.  She has barely spoken a word in the public since the engagement was announced.  The Duchess of Cambridge, as the wife of the second in the line to the throne, will remain in the background as she is eased, gently into royal duties.

She is a star, nonetheless.

Morton has nothing new to say.  He has culled all the appropriate news clips to pad the text -- and inserts Diana's name at every possible moment, which can be rather disconcerting at times.   Andrew Morton goes off the rails when he quotes a Scottish nobleman, "speaking on condition of anonymity."   The alleged Scottish nobleman was quoted as saying that William was expected to marry someone among the aristocracy or European royalty.

Balderdash!  The British royals largely do not mix and mingle with their now distant cousins on the Continent.  William was largely expected to marry an English rose, not a European. The British are not too keen on their royals bringing home a foreigner.
William & Catherine: Their Lives, Their Wedding

Lady Diana  Spencer was the daughter of a wealthy earl.  She grew up with royals as neighbors.  But as it turned out, genealogy and royal neighbors does not necessarily mean a successful royal marriage.  Catherine may not be an earl's daughter, but she has a better education than Diana.  She was raised in a two-parent household, two hard working parents, millionaires who made sure their three children received the best education possible.

Unlike Diana,  Catherine has the confidence to shine as a royal bride.  She and Prince William were friends first.  Affection and love followed.  They have built a strong, loving relationship.  William and Catherine are equals.

William & Catherine Their Story (St. Martin's Press: $29.99/$34.40) is not going to one of the books that future biographers of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be consulting.  Far too much rehashing of other people's information.

Memo to Andrew Morton: time to move on from the royal scene.  You did your thing with Diana: Her True Story.   This newest book is awful.    The photos are nice, though, but  it should be noted that wedding is discussed in the final chapter.

This book was also published in the UK by Michael O'Mara.

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