Revenge Recap: Chapter 12–14

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Here’s the recaps for Chapters 1-5 and 6-11 if you missed them.

Ok, we are officially in the spring of 2016. I may slow these down a bit as we move through the rest of the book – as of writing this on Thursday, I made it through Chapter 22 last night and there are a few bits that I think I’ll want to zoom in on. So, just a heads up.

According to Bower, here is the gist of what was going on with Meghan as she went into her first meeting with Harry:

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Revenge Recap: Chapters 6-11

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If you missed it, you can read about Chapters 1-5 here.

Moving right along, the next few chapters we’re going to cover are basically the three years in-between Meghan’s divorce and the beginning of her relationship with Prince Harry. Admittedly, I made it into Chapter 18 last night before I absolutely had to go to bed, so I’ve seen a bit how the beginning of the Sussexes’ relationship is portrayed and read the rundown on the basic Windsor background. I’m flagging that because there are inaccuracies, some of which are minor and some of which are dangling rumors that can be easily disregarded. As such, it’s important to take what Bower is writing with a grain of salt because I’m not in a position to fact check the minutia of the pre-Harry years in Meghan’s life.

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Revenge Recap: Chapters 1-5

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Well, I finally have the book, so let’s dig in. I made it through the first five chapters late last night, so in order to make this doable, I’m going to go ahead and just get posts up when I have a chance. Broadly speaking, what I will say is that there is new information in Tom Bower’s account that we haven’t received via other recent royal biographies, however as of Chapter 6 we are only in 2014, so there’s still ways to go before we’re in the well-trod Windsor territory.

Whether or not you put stock in Bower’s sources or the extent to which you think his bias has poisoned his objectivity is up to you, of course. I’m basically going to work that out for myself as I recap these chapters.

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The Palace Papers: Part Two

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Ok, so I’ve been finished with The Palace Papers for a while now, but had a lot of travel in May and so here we are, post-Jubilee, and back at it. Before we get into it, I wanted to flag the below from my last post on the book:

I want to note that I saw an annoying review of this book before I started reading that refers to these first chapters as dull and meandering – that the book doesn’t really pick up until Meghan comes on the scene. This book wasn’t meant for that reader and I vehemently disagree. 

Palace Papers Part One

I still disagree, but in a different way. I would argue that I found the first half of Tina Brown’s latest installment by far more interesting than the second. Yes, the second half is what covers Kate and Meghan’s introduction into the family and all that ensued, but there wasn’t really anything I found particularly insightful or new. Robert Lacey’s book on the other hand, I loved. So, if what you want is more color on what happened between William and Harry, then go pick that up.

In contrast, Brown’s book is more focused on putting Kate and Meghan into context…which, given the tagline on this site I’m all for. For my purposes, however, I’m good. And for those of you that are following this closely, you’re probably good, too. What I will say, though, is that it’s helpful to sometimes hear what people see and takeaway when they’re not in the throes of this on a regular basis. Perspective, etc.

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The Palace Papers: Part One

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Back in 2007, Tina Brown, former editor-in-chief of Tatler, Vanity Fair, and the New Yorker, wrote what I consider to be the definitive biography on Diana, Princess of Wales. The Palace Papers, released on Tuesday, is essentially its sequel. It picks up where Diana’s life ended, in the late 90s, but it spends the first few chapters strategically weaving around to cover the Diana-adjacent figures and relationships that are informing the current House of Windsor.

So far, I’m only about 150 pages in, but I would say the focus of the attention thus far is on capturing the broad trajectories, relationships, and emotional realities of two rather important royal women today: Queen Elizabeth and her daughter-in-law, The Duchess of Cornwall. There’s also a solid dash of Princess Margaret, the Queen’s late sister, and The Earl and Countess of Wessex (Edward and Sophie). I don’t have a precise agenda for how I’m going to cover this book, but for the purposes of this post, I want to capture the quotes and tidbits that I’ve found the most informative.

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The Crown’s Season 3 As a Whole

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I changed my mind last weekend about writing my final summary of The Crown’s third season because I wanted to re-watch certain episodes and let it all gel a little more. I’ve done so, and with all ten episodes recapped, I think it’s finally time to take a look at them as a complete package. At the close of the first and second seasons, I focused primarily on the question of whether or not the series was focused too much on side characters to the detriment of its lead. This season, I think they did a good job of shading Elizabeth in, but I’m surprised by the direction they took. To be blunt, their portrait of the monarch isn’t very flattering.

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The Crown S3: Cri de Coeur


I’m not sure what I expected from the Season 3 finale. I knew it would cover the dissolution of Princess Margaret’s marriage, but given that the penultimate episode covered events in 1972/1973, I had no idea how they were going to cram four to five years into one episode. Well, they did, but only by once again mashing up a lot of events and ignoring others.

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The Crown S3: Imbroglio


Season 3’s ninth episode essentially covers the breakdown of Charles’s relationship with Camilla. Or, as we’ve now come to see it, the ending of Part One. In The Crown’s world, their demise was taken out of their hands slightly, or at least out of Charles’s, thanks to palace machinations directed by the Queen Mother and Earl Mountbatten. The events depicted are a mash up of those from 1972 and 1973, but per usual for this season, there’s quite a bit of fiction.

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The Crown S3: Dangling Man

EXCLUSIVE: The Crown series three recreates famous scenes from 1975 of Charles and Camilla in Cirencester Park

The moment so many have been waiting for: the introduction of Camilla Shand. Not only that but we are given a true farewell to the Duke of Windsor, and a second strong look at Princess Anne this episode. And because I didn’t make this point in my recap of “Bubbikins,” when a teenage Anne first stepped into the frame, Erin Doherty’s portrayal of the Queen’s daughter may be one of the series’ most on-point performances.

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The Crown S3: Tywysog Cymru

The Crown

Season 3’s sixth episode begins to answer the question of how sympathetic the show intends to be towards a more adult Prince Charles. So far, that answer is “very.” The episode’s title is Welsh for “Prince of Wales,” fitting given that it covers Charles’s investiture in July 1969, as well as the three months leading up to the ceremony during which he lived in Wales.

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