An explosive account of the life of Diana, the late Princess of Wales, from the man who was by her side throughout the most turbulent period of her life.
In 1981 Lady Diana Spencer was seen by many as the salvation of the hidebound Windsor line. As the beautiful, modest, virginal wife of the future King Charles III, she seemed the perfect face for a 21st century Royal family. But Diana didn’t follow the script. Instead she brought a revolution.
Twenty years later the comforting illusion of Royalty as we knew it has gone forever. Diana is dead, the Windsors marginalised and a chastened Prince faces the dilemma of presenting a very different consort to his people. What went wrong?
Since her death many people have come forward claiming to know the true story about Diana, in truth the reality is known by virtually none.
Patrick Jephson was Diana’s closest aide and adviser during her years of greatest public fame and deepest personal crisis. He witnessed the disintegration of her marriage to Prince Charles and the negotiation of the royal divorce. He assisted her as she tried to establish a new life for herself, independent from the Royal Family. Constantly on call, whether on duty or off, he not only organised her official life, but was increasingly drawn into the turmoil of her personal life.
Diana will now never appoint a biographer and a formal history may never be commissioned. Shadows of a Princess goes further than any sanitized offical record, were one ever to be permitted. It reveals the day to day life of a private Diana whose behaviour was in stark contrast to her saint like public image. Rooted in unique first hand experience, it is the most authoritative, balanced account we will ever have of one of the world’s most famous and tragic women.
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Of all the books that have poured from the presses since the death of the Princess of Wales, very few can match the tasteless, self-seeking awfulness of P.D. Jephsons memoir Shadow of a Princess. Jephson, a former Royal Navy officer, was appointed equerry to the Princess of Wales in 1987. Subsequently appointed her private secretary, Jephson ran Dianas chaotic household throughout the final turbulent years of her life, before resigning following her decision to give a revelatory interview to BBCs Panorama in 1996.
Jephsons book ostensibly offers an insiders view on Diana's life during and after her relationship with the Prince of Wales. In fact it is an extraordinary and terribly crass character assassination of his former employer. Almost every page pours vitriol on the Princess, sneering at her interest in enthusiastic foreigners, cataloguing her megalomania, illusion of compassion and desire to plot and manoeuvre against virtually every member of the Royal Family. As Jephson dutifully follows the Princess on royal engagements he portrays her as a media-hungry young woman for whom no emotion was too facile. The book is remarkable for its almost complete lack of insight into what happened during some of the most turbulent years in the history of the House of Windsor. Jephson sympathises with Prince Charles as a decent chap, and has little of interest to say about Dianas affairs, beyond her regrettable habit of hanging around public gyms. In the midst of all of this Jephson characterises himself as a conscientious chap. Sadly, if his most of what he says here about Diana is true, he actually manages to come across as even more shallow and self-serving than the Princess. Quite a debut. --Jerry BrottonReview:
“Never has so senior a servant of the Royal Family decided to reveal his secrets and rarely has one witnessed such turbulent times.”
“Mr. Jephson was a witness to significant events in recent royal history, he is in a position to reveal the truth.”
“There was nothing in her life Jephson didn’t know about.”
The Sunday Times
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Book Description Harper Collins, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0007113587
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0007113587
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110007113587