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Publisher's Summary

In the first in-depth biography of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall - the infamous other woman who made the marriage of Britain's Prince Charles and Princess Diana "a bit crowded" - esteemed royal biographer Penny Junor tells the unlikely and extraordinary story of the woman reviled as a pariah who, thanks to numerous twists of fate, became the popular princess consort.

Few know the Windsor family as well as veteran royal biographer and journalist Penny Junor. In The Duchess, she casts her insightful, sensitive eye on the intriguing, once widely despised, and little-known Camilla Parker Bowles, revealing in full, for the first time, the remarkable rise of a woman who was the most notorious mistress in the world.

As Camilla's marriage to Charles approached in 2005, the British public were upset at the prospect that this woman, universally reviled for wrecking the royal marriage, would one day become queen. Sensitive to public opinion, the palace announced that this would never happen; when Charles eventually acceded to the throne, Camilla would be known as the princess consort. Yet a decade later British public sentiment had changed, with a majority believing that Camilla should become queen.

Junor argues that although Camilla played a central role in the darkest days of the modern monarchy - Charles and Diana's acrimonious and scandalous split - she also played a central role in restoring the royal family's reputation, especially that of Prince Charles. A woman with no ambition to be a princess, a duchess, or a queen, Camilla simply wanted to be with, and support, the man who has always been the love of her life. Junor contends that their marriage has reinvigorated Charles, allowing him to finally become comfortable as the heir to the British throne.

©2017 Penny Junor (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

What listeners say about The Duchess

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  • SM
  • 14-06-2018

Nothing “untold” here

I don’t like giving this book 2 stars because there was nothing terribly wrong with it. But it fell extremely flat. I wasn’t looking for gossip, scandal or intrigue but just something other than a basic, banal report. I’m not sure the author has even privately interviewed Camilla, one on one. It’s a story told very much from the outside perimeter. So I have to disagree with the title “The Untold Story” because there is nothing “untold” in this book.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Simone
  • 09-09-2018

P.R. Campaign

Alright alright already! Camilla’s amazing, I get it! Was Penny Junor hired by Camilla’s P.R. staff? She denies it of course, but BOY does it ever feel that way! This book feels like an aggressive pro-Camilla campaign. It’s over the top positive and is all about convincing the reader that Camilla is terrific. If like me, you liked Camilla already, just wanted to read her bio and didn’t need any convincing to bring you over to her side, then wear a helmet because you’ll feel beat over the head with it.

5 people found this helpful

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  • swimmamac
  • 26-04-2019

Total PR job

I had to laugh at some passages since the author was an unmitigated syncophant to Charles and Camiilla. This is not an unbiased biography.

3 people found this helpful

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  • heather
  • 08-04-2020

its a bad book

it was a bio more on the prince not her. from there it goses into a comerical fir woman charities.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-10-2020

This is a very lovely read

I enjoyed every minute of this book. You get a better sense of just how difficult Diana was. Poor Charlie had to get rid of all his close friends and his loving dog because Diana didn't like them.You realise Charles went through hell. You also realise that Camilla was a very trusted and caring friend. She was not just his lover.

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  • Texas Lady
  • 08-08-2020

Disappointing

Too many disconnecting details. I got lost in following the sentence including off topic details before the end of sentence. It could have included more details about Camilla and less about unrelated details of Diana and Charles. I did not finish the book. I retain very little of what I read due to the rabbit trails.

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  • trufels24
  • 04-05-2020

Incredible

The reader, the author, the subject are all three remarkable women. The reader was crisp and clear in her delivery - I will be looking for more books that she has narrated. The author was detailed, precise and gave both sides, be them good or bad. The thing that I liked the most is that she gave such a clear picture of The Duchess that I felt as if I could go and sit down and have tea with them. I do not care for the media's portrayal of individuals and this was a book that gave me an opportunity to get to know and understand The Duchess as the person she truly is. I Loved this Book!!!!

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  • Mary L
  • 17-09-2019

Camilla saves the Monarchy

This author is blinded by her attachment with the monarchy. Camilla saved the Monarchy and her son Tom, although fallen into drugs, it was other influences who drove him there. The discription of her childhood was well done. But Camilla can simply....do no wrong.

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  • Admiralu
  • 14-07-2019

Fascinating Story-Awful Audiobook Production

This was a fascinating and interesting portrait of an amazing woman. Reviled by many, the ugly truth of Prince Charles' first marriage is briefly touched upon here. It left him hurt and wounded in more ways than one. It is interesting to note that close friends encouraged the two to reconnect. The Duchess of Cornwall is a warm, loving, down to earth lady who lived a life filled with friends and family. Despite her determination to woo and win the young Andrew Parker Bowles, (which she did), Charles was the love of her life and he was heartbroken when she married. Andrew cheated on her repeatedly. I believe you should read her story to find out what happened after Charles and Diana were forced toghether. The public was not aware of how bad things had gotten until later. It was also sad to learn how his parents declined to support him. Camilla is really his best friend and supporter. I was also interested in learning about how she supports her charities, putting the focus on the causes and bringing many disparate agencies together for the common good. She is not interested in the spotlight and is happy to be herself. It is a fair and balanced portrait and I had a hard time putting it down. The sections on the charities she supports is an eye opener statistic wise, the scope of the problems larger than known. I was shocked to find out how many people in British jails are illiterate. Please note: I read this book using immersion reading while listening to the audio book. The audio version has a number of issues. Two chapters #26 Rebecca and #41 The Rubbish Pickers Wife are not in the Kindle version of the book. After Chapter 26, the chapters do not correspond to the Kindle version. Sections of text are left out and the narrator frequently adds or changes words. Many sentences are clipped short. This should be unheard of coming from a major publishing house.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-06-2018

The narration

I am sure this is a very interesting book, however, I have had to give up because I just can't deal with the narrator. For me, it totally spoiled the book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mollie30
  • 07-05-2020

Brilliant listen!

So enjoyed this book - only my third audible book. I always suspected the duchess was a remarkable woman as why would Prince Charles have married her! Beautifully written and narrated. So sorry when I came to the end!

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