Long Live The King – John Rowe
This book review is half coincidence and half on purpose after . This book is pretty much a manual on how it would go if Prince Henry assumed the throne in real life.
The plot starts when an IRA bomb kills George’s brother Richard, a few other members of the Royal Family and the Prime Minister. George is quite like Prince Henry in real life – a bigoted and flamboyant rich kid. Now King, George has to cool the relationship he has had for a while with Rebel Fitzpatrick – a very successful Catholic American singer.
In this book George is a King more than usually involved in politics and frequently has talks with the Prime Minister Rupert Kitchener about various problems such as union strikes, and the complete evacuation of British troops and willing Protestants from Northern Ireland.
Various events such as getting stopped by a traffic policeman in Germany for speeding, getting into a barfight with members of an Irish sports team, and an arrogant and racist confrontation with two black Americans in the military make this book full of twists and turns. One event in this book that stands out is when George sneaks off to Northern Ireland unannounced and without security to join his old army mates. Upon taking a ride in a tank… the group of tanks he is travelling with are attacked by the IRA using rocket propelled grenades. Instead of shrinking away from the attack, the King commands his gunner to engage and kill the IRA members who come very close to killing him.
George eventually becomes interested and starts courting the Prime Minister’s daughter Anne. After a while George marries Anne and she becomes the Queen. The relationship is fraught by George’s emotional attachment to Rebel, and Anne’s insecurities about Rebel. George commits adultery with Rebel and eventually makes her pregnant. George convinces his long time friend Harry to publicly admit to being the father so that Anne doesn’t find out.
Eventually Anne does find out about George’s philandering which turns their marriage into one full of coldness and suspicion, and provokes her into doing something irrational which is eerily similar to an alleged incident that happened with Diana, Princess of Wales.
All in all this book I think is a remarkable insight into the minds and way of thinking of our real life Royal Family… right down to the ingrained bigoted view of England’s old school aristocracy regarding anyone who is not a WASP.
This is definitely an awesome read which I have done so numerous times and definitely reckon you should too.