Title: The King’s Speech: how one man saved the British Monarchy
Author: Mark Logue, Peter Conradi
Genre: Biography, History, Non-Fiction
The subject of a major motion picture starring Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush and Helena Bonham Carter. One man saved the British Royal Family in the first decades of the 20th century – amazingly he was an almost unknown, and certainly unqualified, speech therapist called Lionel Logue, whom one newspaper in the 1930s famously dubbed The Quack who saved a King’. Logue wasn’t a British aristocrat or even an Englishman – he was a commoner and an Australian to boot. Nevertheless it was the outgoing, amiable Logue who single-handedly turned the famously nervous, tongue-tied, Duke of York into the man who was capable of becoming King. Had Logue not saved Bertie (as the man who was to become King George VI was always known) from his debilitating stammer, and pathological nervousness in front of a crowd or microphone, then it is almost certain that the House of Windsor would have collapsed. The King’s Speech is the previously untold story of the extraordinary relationship between Logue and the haunted young man who became King George VI, drawn from Logue’s unpublished personal diaries. They throw extraordinary light on the intimacy of the two men – and the vital role the King’s wife, the late Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, played in bringing them together to save her husband’s reputation and his career as King. The King’s Speech is an intimate portrait of the British monarchy at a time of its greatest crisis, seen through the eyes of an Australian commoner who was proud to serve, and save, his King. (via Goodreads)
Thoughts: I really liked it. While the movie only looked at one aspect of King George VII’s and Logue’s relationship, this book had a more complete look at their relationship and also looked more deeply at Logue’s background and how he influenced the emerging field of Speech Therapy. Excellent read.
3789 / 15000 pages. 25% done!