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Queen Victoria: A Life Paperback – Jun 19 2012

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Tauris Parke Paperbacks; New edition (June 19 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780760485
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780760483
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 2 x 20 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 259 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #500,836 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Lytton Strachey (1880–1932), one of the most famous writers of his time, was a prominent member of the Bloomsbury set and pioneer of a new style of biography. He is the author of, among others Landmarks, Eminent Victorians, and Elizabeth and Essex.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 46 reviews
70 of 71 people found the following review helpful
Pivotal & Engaging May 19 2010
By L A B - Published on
Strachey's book was published orginally in 1921 and was a pivotal biography according to Linda Wagner-Martin in "Telling Women's Lives - The New Biography". This book broke away from tradition and provided a deeper look at the Queen and all those around her by abandoning the notion of promoting a person's successess and strengths and instead paints the portrait of a human with weaknesses, motivations, strengths, and stuggles. The reader sees the Queen in relationships that become history and see the impact of personality in making decisions.

The book is engaging especially once Victoria moves beyond childhood and becomes Queen. The portrait of Edward and Victoria's relationship is vivid. The story provides a rich understanding of places in the lives of the royal family that continue today, namely Balmoral, and give a glimpse at the royal family culture that can be seen in current events. It is more than a book about Queen Victoria.

40 of 40 people found the following review helpful
An engaging study of a fascinating monarch Sept. 10 2010
By Carla - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Giles Lytton Strachey was an early 20th century writer and biographer who developed a reputation for writing biographies that dealt with individuals as people, rather than the events they were associated with. His 1921 biography of the British monarch, Queen Victoria, is a highly readable insight into this long-reigning queen.

Many public domain books can be slow to read, with language that is sometimes archaic when compared to contemporary writing. This is not the case with Strachey's work. Not only does it thoroughly cover Victoria's life from childhood to death, but it is an engaging read that explores Victoria's relationships, both personal and professional. I particularly liked reading of the love between Victoria and her husband, Albert, much of which is detailed in Victoria's journals and letters. I also enjoyed Strachey's turn of phrase and his ability to create such effective word-pictures of this fascinating monarch and her life.

If you have any interest in history or curiosity about British monarchs I think you will enjoy this book. I certainly did - far more than I expected to.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Interesting portrait of a queen Aug. 3 2000
By omarbukka - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A readable and fairly brief account of Victoria. Frequent passages from Victoria's girlhood diary and letters make Victoria's early life particularly vivid reading. Also fascinating is Victoria's relationship with her government, and her tendency to cling to the current prime minister and despise the Opposition, whoever they might be.
The enigmatic Prince Albert, and his evolving relationship with Victoria, is presented well. Strachey makes some startling suggestions about what Britain might have turned into, had Albert lived longer (answer: Prussia).
This book is elegantly written, and free of the psychobabble one might expect from a more modern book.
The book is not boring. Although Victoria is always proper, there is plenty of adultery and dysfunctional family behavior among her many adult children.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
well documented brings Victoria in a different light Oct. 25 2010
By clayton - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Brings Queen Victoria into a very different light , shows that shes a woman above all , the book touches the love story of the century gone that was her marriage to Albert
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Oh Lytton, what a beauty of a little book April 2 2013
By Will Hallahan - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Lytton Strachey was a bit of a sad, mixed up and certainly misunderstood character. I wish he was able to give us more writing and scholarship of the calibre found in 'Queen Victoria'.

I understand that in 'Eminent Victorians' and 'Queen Victoria' he was amongst the first to present to the world more realistic portraits of his subjects, characters who had been practically beatified during the Victorian era. Now his takes on Florence Nightingale and Queen Victoria have become, more or less, the common view of these two remarkable but also flawed women: Strachey himself is little known, but his legacy is with us still.

The pace of 'Queen Victoria' is lively, the turn of phrase typically evocatively brilliant, while the rendering of such intriguing men as Albert, Disraeli and particularly (if briefly) Gladstone is a delightful addition to the penetrating and compassionate picture Strachey paints of Victoria herself: simple, dignified, devoted, passionate and eternal.

A lovely book.