#DOWNLOAD Ø Victoria ⚛ eBook or E-pub free

I got the ARC via Penguin s First to Read program The subject of this book is fascinating, the structure of the book could have been improved At points there was so much trivial information being thrown at the reader, some of it as an aside, that what place and time being discussed was hard to figure out The book doesn t uncover all the mysteries Queen Victoria left behind, at certain points she is still a puzzle, and because her children did their best to censor and hide the salacious pieces of trivia from her correspondence, the author and reader are left with unanswered questions It is an odd biography in some ways, intimate and yet distant Perhaps it is fitting since that seems to be the best way to describe Victoria herself. I finished this with a great deal of regret as it is to me a masterly biography of someone who combined a great deal of empathy and humanity with being a monstre sacre of sublime selfishness He doesn t hide her many faults and examines the rumours of her marriage to John Brown with the right degree of scepticism but finds her fascinating and intelligent. #DOWNLOAD ó Victoria º When Queen Victoria Died In , She Had Ruled For Nearly Sixty Four Years She Was A Mother Of Nine And Grandmother Of Forty Two And The Matriarch Of Royal Europe Through Her Children S Marriages To Many, Queen Victoria Is A Ruler Shrouded In Myth And Mystique, An Aging, Stiff Widow Paraded As The Figurehead To An All Male Imperial Enterprise But In Truth, Britain S Longest Reigning Monarch Was One Of The Most Passionate, Expressive, Humorous And Unconventional Women Who Ever Lived, And The Story Of Her Life Continues To FascinateA N Wilson S Exhaustively Researched And Definitive Biography Includes A Wealth Of New Material From Previously Unseen Sources To Show Us Queen Victoria As She S Never Been Seen Before Wilson Explores The Curious Set Of Circumstances That Led To Victoria S Coronation, Her Strange And Isolated Childhood, Her Passionate Marriage To Prince Albert And His Pivotal Influence Even After Death And Her Widowhood And Subsequent Intimate Friendship With Her Highland Servant John Brown, All Set Against The Backdrop Of This Momentous Epoch In Britain S History And The World SBorn At The Very Moment Of The Expansion Of British Political And Commercial Power Across The Globe, Victoria Went On To Chart A Unique Course For Her Country Even As She Became The Matriarch Of Nearly Every Great Dynasty Of Europe Her Destiny Was Thus Interwoven With Those Of Millions Of People Not Just In Europe But In The Ever Expanding Empire That Britain Was Becoming Throughout The Nineteenth Century The Famed Queen Had A Face That Adorned Postage Stamps, Banners, Statues And Busts All Over The Known WorldWilson S Victoria Is A Towering Achievement, A Masterpiece Of Biography By A Writer At The Height Of His Powers DNF somewhere around 70%I m really starting to doubt that I even like Victoria Her life is a jumbled mess She feels sorry for herself throughout her life, and I hate people who do that Especially when they have pretty damn good lives except for minor things Then, there s her gossipy years And her years where she s being controlled by Albert Or various other men since she almost constantly seemed to need that Also, pretty sexist woman.So, either I don t like Victoria or I don t like how she s presented Either she s presented as very weak and needing a man to control her or she s presented as a strong woman who was wild This biography was heavy on talking about politics that didn t involve her Victoria was tacked on even in her own biography Then, when it got into her personal life, it was all focused on her family and whatever man she was practically obsessed with What about her political views I know she was a staunch Tory, but what about policies Wilson touched on her relationship with her children, but I wanted an overall picture It felt tacked on after Albert died.A disappointing and really long biography. Sloppy, disjointed and rather dismissive in parts, but revealing nonetheless Concurrently in reading this book, I also watched several documentaries on Victoria and her children, and it s interesting the many different takes people have on her character and reign I chose this book to read, because it was the largest, and I hoped the most comprehensive, but I think back to the drawing board If anything, this book seemed to be mostly centered around Victoria s relations with her prime ministers, than anything else Oddly, I think, this book minimized the roles of the villainous Sir John Conroy and her governess Lehzen in Victoria s life when other sources emphasize them And I think it made the Kensington system as insignificant later justification by Victoria and her mother as saintly, with all those nice letters as proof to her mother s devotion I can totally see why Victoria was estranged from her mother her mom openly chose Conroy over her why sort of unclear was she that weak willed I also think it s hard to argue on her mother s behalf too much, which is why this part seems somewhat skipped over Victoria, even though she was 3 4s German, did resemble her Hanovarian father, and I liked whenever the author pointed out various behaviors of her and Bertie that resisted the prim Albert side Between her letters and her journals, Victoria wrote 60 million words in her lifetime, the equivalent of 700 volumes one documentary said she exchanged 7,000 letters with her daughter Vicki, who exchanged 2,000 letters with her granddaughter It does make you see how her secretaries, who often had to make the copies for her, because her handwriting somewhat illegible, died all broken aged men before their time And it gives authors and historians a lot of material to work with not just in the strange highly charged character of Victoria herself, but also because so much was lost or destroyed or recopied and edited But there is so much material, it is impossible to censor or control completely And she was a larger than life character at the head of the world s largest empire during a period of total flux and change, spanning a globe, so I think I need to do reading on her.With her huge family, 9 children, whom all had lots of children, the family tradition of everyone being married off to their first cousins, it can get easy to lose track of people I don t think A.N Wilson helped sometimes calling people by first name, or nickname, or title, without referencing back to maybe what branch of the family they are, since lots of Alices and Alberts and Ernsts and Leopolds The author himself loses track So while Ducky Affie s Victoria s 2nd son daughter Victoria Melita, went off for seven years of stultifying boredom in Darmstadt, her two sisters were now both bound for Russia Ella was already the Grand Duchess Elisabeth, Alicky was to become Alexandra Feodorovna which is wrong Ella Alicky were daughters of Victoria s second daughter, the sad anorexic Alice But errors like this I found popping up all over the book, and that always makes me wonder Of all her kids, and actually all the personages in this book, it made me want to read about Empress Vicky , the mother of the Kaiser, and by all accounts one of the most tragic doomed figures in history I feel so bad for her Also, mildly annoying I noticed in 2 documentaries on the Prince of Wales never credited for cranking up the pressure on the first born son, since she was a child prodigy, and how her attachment and accomplishments to both her parents rather spoiled things a bit for the kids next in line Arthur and Louise are barely mentioned in this book With Arthur being her favorite son, I found the brief mentions of him and usually referencing his role in the military a little odd I think Victoria is a person who is hurt by grand pronouncements and is seen falsely as being a crabby old lady She was stuffy sometimes, but off the clock liked whiskey and trashy novels I loved how whenever she used the word surprised it really meant she was beyond pissed off I think the author is correct in assuming that her attachment to John Brown I think she did marry him and Munshi were because she had lots of subjects and family members, but few friends I would have liked on Empress Eugenie The author states she never saw Napoleon III while he was in exile in England, but Eugenie seems to pop up with some frequency and I found it adorable that Victoria, while hopelessly dowdy even as a young woman, didn t begrudge or was threatened by fashionable or beautiful women I would have liked to read on her female friends but beyond Eugenie, none were really mentioned I liked how she wasn t racist, and if anything her views on race were the opposite of her time and I wonder if her attachment to all her subjects was a factor in the stability of her Empire, or if that wasn t known at the time.I didn t get this author s love for Gladstone I can sort of see why weekends he stayed at the Queen s house were awkward and they could go days without speaking to each other But I don t know maybe because it s me, and I secretly find British government affairs a little bit on the boring side, governments seem to be constantly overthrown with majorities and multiple parties and coalitions, and just seems vague and amorphous I mean it works for them I m sure, but I can t read about how Melbourne s crazy obese wife was like off limits, and he was really into SM, so he d pay the workhouse money to send him orphan girls to spank for his sexual pleasure, but he was a really nice guy Followed by many chapters about him and his policies but he s now wrecked for me as a child abuser Same thing with Lord Harcourt I guess his diaries are witty and lively depiction of Victorian England, but he was also a pedophile of both sexes, who killed himself when it came out All this felt glossed over, but maybe I was so repulsed by both men, all the glowing testaments later annoyed me.This book does something frequently that I am going to start calling out in all future history books when you reference a picture, and analyze it, and go on to say how it s the perfect representation of a period in life, etc., and then do NOT have that in the photograph section, it makes me want to tear my hair out I went to google to look up various photographs for example the photo of Bertie as a young man he talks about and paintings such as the famous one of Victoria Albert when they were recently married because they are not in this book And this book has a photo section So no excuse, but the captions for many of them not sure if sarcastic.This photo was in the book captioned Victoria and Albert in their thirties Already the bloom of Albert s youth has faded, while she retains her girlishness I don t know about you, but that photo does not say girlishness to me Victoria changed as a person during her life, so I think that alone makes any book on her interesting The author points out she was in better health in her 60s than she was in her 40s He also claims she went through an alcoholic period in her 40s John Brown s influence of whiskey but did that continue throughout her life I liked how upset she was over Jack the Ripper and sent the police an itemized list of things she wanted done, besides better lighting on the streets Have the cattle boats and passenger boats been examined Has any investigations been made as to the number of single men occupying rooms to themselves The murderer s clothes must be saturated with blood and must be kept somewhere Is there sufficient surveillance at night These are some of the questions that occur to the Queen on reading the accounts of this horrible crime Will definitely have to read books on her maybe best to stick to ones that just focus on a particular time or feature in her life. Victoria s reign is far too long, and too detailed to have a single, definitive biography But if you re looking for something to act as an ideal survey course between two covers, then you won t go wrong reading this surprisingly detailed yet surprisingly easy to read epic A story of Victoria s reign than Victoria the person, it does offer incredible insights into her psychological make upand some fascinating observations about her relationships with her family, friends, and enemies Extremely satisfying all around. Victoria has been a magnet for biographical rereading in the eleven decades since her death In the 1990s academic scholars got hold of the Queen and the results were a post structuralist Victoria It is now twenty years since the last serious flurry of biographical interest Wilson picks up the pieces and puts the jigsaw back together again, creating in the process a Victoria for our own time.Wilson went to the archives in Sax Coburg and reconnected the taproot of Victoria and Albert s plan for a united, moderate German Wilson shows that after the death of Albert, Victoria continued the Coburg Project When the Schleswig Holstein crisis blew up in the early 1860s, she understood, in a way that her prime minister, Palmerston, did not, that buried in the parochial squabble between Prussia and Denmark were the first signs of the Bismarckian aggression that would eventually rip Europe apart It was only thanks to the wise Queen, suggests Wilson that Britain did not blunder into war with Germany at the point, fifty years before it was capable of winning.Wilson had access to Victoria s diaries and voluminous correspondence, as well as other archival documents The book is well researched Wilson covers her life from childhood to death and her relationships with her nine children The author states Victoria was a prolific writer and if she was a novelist she would have written 700 novels I was surprised to learn that Victoria was an amateur painter and that she particularly enjoyed working with watercolors.Wilson explains how Victoria inherited her uncle s throne when she was a teenager She was surrounded by warring court fractions Victoria was faced with a series of fragile coalition governments, labor unrest at home, a famine in Ireland, revolution on the other side of the Channel, a spectacularly mismanaged war in the Crimea and that s just in the first two decades of her reign She was unscathed by nine childbirths as she was by eight assassination attempts.This is a well written and well researched book If you are interested in British history or Victoria this is an excellent read Be warned the book is long at 21 hours or about 600 pages I read this as an audiobook downloaded from Audible Clive Chafer narrated the book. I went into this book without much knowledge of Queen Victoria outside of a few general details I have not read anything else that focuses on the woman, but I can t help but feel that this book does not do her justice It is a dry read, and one that skips around in strangely disjointed ways Wilson does not handle transitions with any grace, and tangential information is thrown in willy nilly in a way that rather jarringly interrupts the narrative I occasionally found myself backtracking to be sure that I had not missed a page, as a result The main story, that of Victoria, is often thrown into the background in favor of long expositions on the lives and politics of her Prime Ministers which, while relevant to her world and her reign, come off like flavorless chapters in a high school history textbook.I felt the handling of her childhood and her marriage was interesting, but everything after the death of Albert fell flat I do not feel left with a good sense of who the widowed queen was as a person or as the dynastic matriarch of much of Europe s ruling class I am not satisfied by this biography and will have to find other sources. There are some very long books that I wish would never end This is not one of them. I was a little disappointed in A.N Wilson s Victoria A Life Okay, I was a lot disappointed, because I was hoping to get some new insight into the life of Victoria In writing this book, Wilson had access to Victoria s writings and other documents from the era to which other biographers have not been privy However, I found that Wilson s writing tended to be jumpy and disjointed a timeline, genealogical chart, and cast of characters would have been immensely helpful in getting through this book Since I was reading an advanced review copy, it is possible that those are included in the final, published version I hope so as it will make things so much easier for the reader.At times, Wilson manages to humanize Victoria showing her as a passionate newlywed, a woman with a rather quirky sense of humor, and one who was keenly interested in politics and who wanted to do well by her subjects Too much of the time, however, the book gets bogged down by the minutia of the politics of the time probably inevitable given that Victoria ruled during a pivotal time in British history I found myself having to turn to Wikipedia often while reading this book to try to keep the characters straight.Having recently read Serving Victoria Life in the Royal Household by Kate Hubbard, I found that book a much accessible and humanizing portrait of Victoria, so I can t even say that I gained any fresh knowledge of Victoria from Wilson s book I have read other biographies of Victoria, although it has been several years I think the most I can say about Wilson s book is that it certainly is a comprehensive picture of Victoria and her reign, but if you are really wanting to know what the queen was like, you might be better served by reading Kate Hubbard s book.