Happy Saturday (part 2!)
We're also reviewing Kate: The Future Queen by Katie Nicholl. It's the newly-amended edition of Katie's book, which first came out in 2013.
Like most people, I've always been interested by Kate Middleton. However, Katie Nicholl does a great job of showing that there's more than just a girl who's known for her hair, marriage and fashion sense.
This is a girl who actually has to challenges and difficulties that we can't imagine, and I came out of this book far more impressed with Kate and Katie for writing it.
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 31st 2015 by Weinstein Books (first published January 1st 2013)
Format read: Finished copy via publisher
With revelations from Kate's childhood, to thoughts on the birth of King George and the future of the monarchy, there's something for all readers in this insightful, detailed look into one of the most talked-about women of today.
There was the whole Cinderella aspect to their relationship, but I was also genuinely curious how Kate would fit into an internationally famous and intensely dysfunctional family. So after reading a fictionalized version of Kate and William's relationship in The Royal We, I was thrilled when I also got the chance to read Kate: The Future Queen by British royal reporter/journalist Katie Nicholl.
Unlike other royal biographies about Kate and William, Nicholl squarely makes Kate the focus of this book. She digs into Kate's background, sharing insights and revelations that haven't been made public before, including the fact that Michael Middleton came from a certain degree of wealth, and had a trust fund that provided the seed funding for Kate and her siblings to attend prestigious schools.
We also learn that Kate wasn't always the most outgoing of individuals, and was definitely shyer and less accomplished than sister Pippa. However, Nicholls aptly points out how attractive Kate's quiet charm could be, and how in many ways, the Glossy Posse's eventual natural gravitation toward Kate proves that you don't necessarily need to be a Becky Sharp to climb your way to the top.
Once Nicholls gets into the inner workings of Kate and William's relationship however, is when things start getting interesting. Nicholls implies (but never overtly states) that Kate gave up a place at a more prestigious university to go to St. Andrew's, and that the Middleton family - Carole especially - had a hand in making sure the relationship between Kate and William followed the right course.
Though some may judge Kate and Carole for what appears to be obvious attempts to create a relationship between Kate and Prince William, it actually sets the tone for the rest of the book. Nicholls makes it clear that from the moment Kate and William became a couple, her life became one of compromise and chaos. In many ways, Kate gave up personal agency for her relationship, and it's defined her and her every move, ever since.
Ultimately, while Nicholls ends the book with the tacit declaration that Kate, William and Prince George are the shinng new faces of the monarchy, I ended the book feeling more empathetic of what Kate has been through to get to where she is now. Even if she did seek out the relationship with William, she's still had to sacrifice and give up part of herself to become Duchess of Cambridge.
TIme will tell whether all of the sacrifice has been worth it, but Kate has definitely earned more of my admiration and respect for the challenges she's faced, and the experiences that she's had.
I came into the book feeling slightly ho-hum about Kate, and came away with a new appreciation for everything that she's had to go through to join the royal family. Nicholl does a fantastic job of showing the controlled chaos that has dominated Kate's life since becoming involved with Prince William, and the intense scrutiny, both internally and externally that she continues to experience to this very day.
I know that I definitely like Kate a lot better now that I've read this book, and I definitely feel more empathy for her, and her day-to-day challenges. I'm confident that other readers will feel the same, and I strongly encourage interested readers to pick this book up too.
About the author:
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Katie Nicholl is the Royal Editor and Diary Editor for the Mail on Sunday and a contributing editor to Vanity Fair. In addition to her work in print, Katie has developed a successful broadcasting career as a contributor to Sky News and the BBC, and works extensively in America.
She serves as Special Royal News Correspondent for ABC's Good Morning America and appears regularly on prime time TV shows including Entertainment Tonight, Piers Morgan Tonight, The View, and The Lorraine Kelly Show. Also the author of royal biographies William and Harry and The Making of a Royal Romance, she is a widely recognized authority on royal affairs.