Friday, June 17, 2011
The Golden Prince
The Golden Prince is a fascinating tale, filled with real historical figures and well developed fictional ones. Though their love is swift and all encompassing, almost too good to be believed, Dean gives us plenty of reason to suspect that such a clandestine affair took place, giving David solace and emotion in a life lacking both. While they are, of course, the focus of the story, there are subplots involving all of Lily's sisters: Rose, the suffragette, holding herself back from love; Iris, the staid traditionalist; and Marigold, the wild, scandalous young woman desperate for attention. These subplots weave themselves through the main storyline and flesh out all the characters.
I really enjoyed this novel, with its insight into the private lives of the future Edward VIII and those around him, even if the love affair between David and Lily seemed a bit immature (but of course they were both seventeen). Dean gives a very realistic view of the world before the Great War, and the seamless way she incorporates real world events into her story makes it all come to life vividly. I'm still not sure I totally like the ending, but in Dean's world, it works. Certainly I know I'll never look at the romance between David and Wallis Simpson in the same way again.