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Publisher's Summary

You think you know her story. You've read the Brothers Grimm, you've watched the Disney cartoons, you cheered as these virtuous women lived happily ever after. But the lives of real princesses couldn't be more different. Sure, many were graceful and benevolent leaders - but just as many were ruthless in their quest for power, and all of them had skeletons rattling in their royal closets. Princess Stephanie von Hohenlohe was a Nazi spy. Empress Elizabeth of the Austro-Hungarian empire slept wearing a mask of raw veal. Princess Olga of Kiev murdered thousands of men, and Princess Rani Lakshmibai waged war on the battlefield, charging into combat with her toddler son strapped to her back. Princesses Behaving Badly offers mini-biographies of all these princesses and dozens more. It's a fascinating listen for history buffs, feminists, and anyone seeking a different kind of bedtime story.
©2013 Linda Rodriguez Mcrobbie (P)2013 Random House Audio
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Critic Reviews

"Campbell makes each princess's story engaging, and makes it crystal clear that while some did, indeed, behave badly--even inhumanely--others were just rebelling against impossible strictures…it's Campbell's impeccable narration that turns the book into something special." ( AudioFile)
"Princess, diva, pain in the ass — all terms that resonate throughout Princesses Behaving Badly, which tells of royal terrors who make modern gossip queens seem as demure as Snow White." ( New York Post)
"History has produced some very real, very dangerous ladies who make their movie and book counterparts seem lame by comparison. From Nazi spy to bloodthirsty killer, these women were not meek in any way. Heck, one of them even wore a mask of raw veal! You’ll find out all this and more in this little book of miniature biographies." ( Geeks of Doom)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Troy on 01-15-14

Rapid-Fire History

Think of this as the ultra-fast introduction to literally dozens of history's most famous, notorious, and interesting women. If you're looking for in-depth, move on. These mini-biographies are, instead, tailored to giving only the highlights. The result is that you learn a lot in a short period of time, and chances are there are many of these that will inspire you to dig deeper. The downside is that if you listen to this book in one or two sittings, some of these people will probably blend together. Solution: listen again. This is the no-frills, no subtleties, no boring bits of history for those times when you just need a lighter read. As much as I love the in-depth and nuanced tomes, sometimes I just need something fun. This book fits the bill.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Mary Elizabeth Reynolds on 04-14-14

Princesses Researched Well

The author's aim in this book is to tear away the pinky froth of the Disney princess and replace it with, in most cases, a rather ugly reality. It's written with a witty tone, and somber when it is needed. Unlike some of the other collections I have read, it doesn't seem just to recycle old history, but uses current research as well. I'm anal retentive about history, and getting it right, and I found little to quibble with over this. Its spans a good millennia in the telling, but not chronologically rather by interesting categories, such as the warrior princesses. It's certainly not for young girls, maybe a mature teenage with a penchant for history.

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6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Rebecca on 08-24-16


A truly fascinating and fast paced set of historical stories that draw you in at every turn. Worth every penny!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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