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The Royals

Written by: Kitty Kelley
Narrated by: Jennifer Van Dyck
Length: 20 hrs and 28 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

They are the most chronicled family on the face of the globe. Their every move attracts headlines. Scores of books have tried and failed to penetrate the royal facade. Now Kitty Kelley has gone behind palace walls to provide the first three-dimensional, comprehensive, and evenhanded portrait of the men and women who make up the British Royal family.

Kelley spent more than four years investigating the royal family. In addition to meticulous research into documented sources, she conducted hundreds of exclusive interviews with past and present employees of the royal household, royal friends and relations, courtiers, members of Parliament, and other intimate observers, raising the curtain on this most secretive family. Here are lonely royal children brought up without a proper education in isolated and artificial surroundings, 20th-century adolescents with 19th-century touchstones. Here are the sexual ambiguities, the alcoholism, gambling, and womanizing that were common in the House of Windsor long before Prince Charles married Lady Diana Spencer. No one is spared; here are the scandals of the last decades: the doomed marriages, and the husbands, wives, lovers, and children caught in their wake and damaged beyond repair.

Illuminating the Windsors' arrogance, naiveté , and lusts - as well as hard work, dedication, and ability to survive the most humiliating disclosures - The Royals is Kitty Kelley's richest, most iconoclastic, historically significant, and compelling work.

©1997 H.B. Productions, Inc. (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it!

Very interesting and informative along with funny. Quite similar to The Crown playing on Netflix. As much as I admire the Royals the way they live and follow tradition (lol) I don't think I would want their life. Makes for good reading though. Love Kitty Kelly. Leaves nothing out!

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sheila G.
  • South England
  • 2016-02-12

A titillating and delightful insight....

I love Kitty Kelley's work and this is about a far and truthful insight I believe you're going to get. Riveting from beginning to end, I found the only thing to irk me a bit was the narrator's occasional mispronunciation, (Al, as in the word pal, thorp. Diana Spencer's home of Althorp should have been pronounced All-throp). A slight oddity, I accept, but that's just how we pronounce it here. I found a few of these. Apart from a few of these little slip ups in the narration - which would never have bothered the reader, only the audiobook listener - I loved The Royals and couldn't stop listening to it. I think though the exploits of the Duke have been underplayed, but, at the risk of making the story too much about him, I suppose the finished product is well rounded and very entertaining.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Laurie
  • 2017-11-07

Ties the Tin Can On Them

Most Americans know very little of the inside scoop on the current royal family. This book was a real eye-opener for me. She really knows how to wipe the polish off them and show them with all their flaws -- and there are many.

About the only thing she did not say (maybe because it's obvious) is that their behavior has to be put into some kind of historical context. The nobility was never really expected to display exemplary character until the 20th century. Prior to that, they could be, and were, pretty beastly. The royal family and most of the noble families have not evolved because they've been swaddled in the cotton batting of privilege and wealth. You've got to cut them a little break for not changing their behavior and attitudes as rapidly as the rest of the world. But just a LITTLE break! It's high time for some changes.

Good book and difficult to stop listening, even though I know some of these stories --

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kimberlyn Troy
  • Wauwatosa, WI
  • 2016-11-07

A Juicy listen! Long, but ICouldn't stop listening

If you love Real Housewives and celebrity gossip, you will love this. While I personally believe about 75% of this as fact, Kelley definitely didher research from other interviews and reports spanning decades.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Shorton25
  • 2017-03-22

Very Informative!

What did you love best about The Royals?

The insiders information. I didn't know that Prince Philip had so many trysts.

What did you like best about this story?

The author's ability to bring history to life. I enjoyed hearing about Queen Elizabeth's family.

Have you listened to any of Jennifer Van Dyck’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

not applicable

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Prince William and Prince Harry's upbringing was rather sad although brought up with many things, nothing can take the place of a loving family. I was disgusted by Princess Fergie's shenanigans.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Dorothy Lamb-Stovall
  • Dallas Texas
  • 2015-02-19

Very interesting

I thought this biography to be well written and insightful. if you're interested in the British royal family, you'll find this paced nicely and informative without being plodding. It fills in a lot of gaps and explains the back story of the current royals and their foibles. of course, it was written before there was the Middleton family, so there's nothing more recent really than Prince Charles and Camila. the voice recording is good and pleasant to listen too. All in all a worthwhile story.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2016-05-21

Tragic story...

Their lives would've been different if it were not for modern technology, paparazzi, etc. I've read about this royal family's ancestors who behaved the same but got away with so much because of the times they lived in...no cameras, no tv news, no radio, no cell phones or wiretapping.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Admiralu
  • Camarillo, California United States
  • 2019-11-10

Superb Behind the Scenes Account of the Royals


This was an excellent behind the scenes look at the British royal family. Noted author Kitty Kelley extensive research was superb. So much never before revealed information made this book hard to put down. It also spotlights the class divide in Great Britain, down to the smallest sniping. For example, Princess Margaret was born royal, so she was above Princess Diana who married into the royal family. Quite a bit was surprising. Prince William was only the third royal to earn a college degree. Most of the royals did not study subjects like science or math. Many are and remain out of touch with regular people and still don't understand why Princess Diana was loved around the World. I had no idea just how much the former HRH Fergie made and lost due to her greed. This book is a must read. I read this book using immersion reading while listening to the audio book. Jennifer Van Dyck did a stellar job on the narration. This book has it all, the scandals, tragedy and heartbreak.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-09-28

Highly recommended

This is such an amazing book, Kitty Kelley never disappoints. I cant wait to read more books from this author, her books are hard to put down once you start reading them.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Elizabeth M Walters
  • AUSTIN, TX
  • 2019-06-24

DELICIOUS! Couldn’t quit listening!

An impending trip to the UK interested me in this 20-year-old book (which I had heard of 20 years ago but never read.) It was fascinating and wonderful, full of interesting tidbits. The narrator was great, but I wondered why they used someone with an American accent instead of British. As an 8th generation Texan, it’s hilarious that I, of all people, caught a mispronunciation. The Texas department store where Queen Elizabeth got her honeymoon negligee is pronounced JOSS-keys, not JOSS-kiss. Anyway, if you love royal gossip, this book is for you!

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  • Carol Davis
  • 2018-12-07

GREAT Book!

If you are a fan of Kitty Kelly, you will love this book! A little gossipy mixed in with truth. I suspect a lot of this is true, and if it is WOOOO! What a story! Keeps you enthralled and wanting more! You won’t regret THIS book (or audible) purchase!!