Daughter of Empire

  • by Pamela Hicks
  • Narrated by Corrie James
  • 7 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Few families can boast of not one but two saints among their ancestors, a great-aunt who was the last tsarina of Russia, a father who was Grace Kelly's pinup, and a grandmother who was not only a princess but could also argue the finer points of naval law. Pamela Mountbatten entered a remarkable family when she was born at the very end of the Roaring Twenties.
As the younger daughter of the glamorous heiress Edwina Ashley and Lord Louis Mountbatten, Pamela spent much of her early life with her sister, nannies, and servants-and a menagerie that included, at different times, a bear, two wallabies, a mongoose, and a lion. Her parents each had lovers who lived openly with the family. The house was always full of guests like Sir Winston Churchill, Noël Coward, Douglas Fairbanks, and the Duchess of Windsor (who brought a cold cooked chicken as a hostess gift).
When World War II broke out, Lord Mountbatten was in command of HMS Kelly before being appointed chief of Combined Operations, and Pamela and her sister were sent to live on Fifth Avenue in New York City with Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt. In 1947, her parents were appointed to be the last viceroy and vicereine of India and oversee the transfer of power to an independent Indian government.
Amid the turmoil of political change, Pamela worked with student leaders, developed warm friendships with Gandhi and Nehru, and witnessed both the joy of Independence Day and its terrible aftermath. Soon afterwards, she was a bridesmaid in Princess Elizabeth's wedding to Prince Philip, and was a lady-in-waiting at the young princess's side when she learned her father had died and she was queen.Vivid and engaging, well-paced and superbly detailed, this witty, intimate memoir is an enchanting lens through which to view the early part of the twentieth century.

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What the Critics Say

"Lady Pamela's memoir will appeal to those who like to take a peek into the lifestyles of the royal and famous." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Beautifully Impressive Narrative of Aristocracy

Here is a completely decorous and highly affluent biography of a supremely beautiful, wondrous woman within the ornament of British high society. This audiobook is a delightful composition of elite adventure, authentic detail and the prettiest conditioning. The author, Lady Pamela Hicks, has a brilliant mind for detail and seemingly effortless ability to entertain majestic interests. I listened to her audible story over a pot of Afternoon Tea at consistent sessions by hour and chapter amazed at the sublime accommodation. Such work as is, in my estimation, excellent for sophisticated occasions. I am proud to have found this audiobook for accompaniment to my choice of polite setting and socializing. The narrator, Corrie James, does a marvelous work of pronunciation and intonation in her thorough support of a magnificent literature. Well done, highly recommendable audiobook on all accounts.
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- Robert W Bruso

Royalty Buffs

Enjoyable modern history especially for those with a fascination for the Royal family of England. The author led an interesting life; met interesting people who were world leaders if the time and describes those people's as well as her parents' personalities and psychological make up with an astute understanding. A very interesting read if you already have a bit of an understanding and an interest in the Royal family.
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- Nanneabear

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-07-2014
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio