Friday, January 10, 2014

Anne Portrait of the Queen by HRH Prince Radu of Romania

It is a good thing when I say that there is a proliferation of books about the Romanian royal family published in Romania.  Books about King Michael and his family can be found in bookstores throughout the country,  This is a good thing.

Prince Radu, the husband of Crown Princess Margarita, is the author of several very books on the royal house.  His most recent book is Anne Portrait of the Queen/Ana Portretul Reginei (Curtea Veche: 41 Leis), which was published to commemorate Queen Anne's 90th birthday last September.

The text is in English and in Romanian, which allows the book to be marketed outside Romania, thus reaching a wider audience.

Prince Radu is correct when he writes that the "text of this book should make room for the photographs to take their rightful place."

Queen Anne was born at Paris on September 18, 1923, one of four children (and only daughter) of Prince Rene of Bourbon-Parma and Princess Margrethe of Denmark.  In November 1947, she took the train from Paris to London to visit her parents, who were guests at the wedding of Princess Elizabeth.  It was in London where she met King Michael, a guest at the wedding.  Much to the dismay of the new communist overlords in Romania,  the young and popular king returned to Bucharest, determined to save his throne, and marry Princess Anne.   The Communists would have nothing of a royal romance (they knew the reaction among the Romanian people would have been positive, something the Communists would not approve).

The Russians had already decided that the King must go, and the monarchy abolished.  Wedding or no wedding, Michael was forced to abdicate on December 30, 1947.  Two weeks after Michael arrived in Lausanne, he was reunited with Princess Anne.  They were married in June 1948.

I cannot imagine the pain that King Michael suffered in the early weeks after the loss of his throne.   Queen Anne has been his soul mate, his support, and his confident for more 65 years.

Anne Portrait of the Queen features black and white and color photos of Queen from childhood to the present.  Many of these photographs were published for the first time, including a selection of wedding photographs, and private family photos from the 1950s and 1960s with the King and Queen's five children.

I only wish bookstores, such as Hoogstraten, would take the initiative and stock Anne Portrait of the Queen and other royal books published in Romania.  Trust me, there is a market for these titles.  A small market, but a market nonetheless.

I want to thank Crown Princess Margarita and Prince Radu for sending me this wonderful book.

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