Victoria, Princess Royal was born on 21 November 1840 as the eldest daughter of Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert. She married the future Frederick III, German Emperor at the age of 17 and went on to have eight children with him. Tragically, his reign would last just 99 days as he was already suffering from throat cancer.
A Most English Princess by Clare McHugh is a novel about the early life of Victoria and the early years of her marriage to Frederick. I am always a little bit afraid of reading historical novels because I fear it will make or break the real-life image of them that I know from biographies.1 Luckily, Clare McHugh reinforces the image of Victoria as the larger-than-life eldest daughter of Queen Victoria. Her intelligence as she grew up, her difficulties at the Prussian court – it’s all there.
I really enjoyed seeing the Prussian court through Victoria’s eyes, and I was surprised to learn that this was the author’s debut novel. I, for one, cannot wait to see more books written by Clare.