Young Elizabeth: The Making of Our Queen

Written by Kate Williams
Review by Ray Taylor

This is a concise account that concentrates on Princess Elizabeth’s childhood and development into the young woman who would be thrust into monarchy. Kate Williams has written a riveting account of these years, full of fascinating details about Elizabeth and her sister Margaret’s childhood and upbringing. We get a wonderful portrait of the human side of the Royal Family. For example, gruff King George V was so tickled by Elizabeth’s attempt to pronounce her name, managing only “Lilibet”, that he decided it should be her name within the family. It was the King who fostered Elizabeth’s love of horses and on one occasion at Sandringham he got down on all fours playing “horsey” with her and she led him by the beard! The relationship–and contrast—between the two princesses is particularly intriguing, with Elizabeth’s very early sense of duty and the need to maintain routine very apparent.

I would highly recommend this book to all those interested in reading about what has helped to make our monarch the Queen she is today.