The New York Times bestseller, now in paperback from one of the most versatile and bold writers of our time—“an astonishing, tightly structured, and lyrically told” novel (People) inspired by Princess Diana.
W hat if Princess Diana hadn’t died? Diana’s life and marriage were fairy tale and nightmare rolled into one. Adored by millions, in her personal life she suffered rejection, heartbreak, and betrayal. Surrounded by glamour and glitz and the constant attentions of the press, she fought to carve a meaningful role for herself in helping the needy and dispossessed. Had she lived, what direction would her life have taken? How would she have matured into her forties and beyond?
Untold Story is about the nature of celebrity, the meaning of identity, and the finding of one’s place in the world. Like Diana, the fictional princess who is the novel’s heroine is both icon and iconoclast. She touches many millions of lives and hearts around the world, sharing the details of her troubled marriage and her eating disorder and reaching out as has no other royal before her. But she is troubled and on the brink of disaster. Will she ever find peace and happiness in her own life, or will the curse of fame always be too great?
Ali (Brick Lane) tackles a juicy premise: what if Diana hadn't died. Far from a salacious romp, though, this is a (sometimes too) slow character study of a woman in extraordinary circumstances. Here, Diana err, Lydia has escaped her life as an ex-princess for a new one in the states. All the real details of her previous life carefully researched and extrapolated from are there, with one exception; having survived the car accident, she later fakes her death (by drowning) and finds her way, via Brazil, to America. She ends up, on a darkly humorous whim, in an anonymous everytown called Kensington, where she builds a quiet life with her dog, Rufus, a job at an animal shelter, and a tight group of friends. When a British paparazzo stumbles into her town, though, her new life is threatened. This tense development is almost a subplot, overtaken as it is by Lydia's emotional exploration how she was nearing the edge before her "death," how unbearable but necessary it was for her to leave her sons, how she has matured and recovered over the years. The result is a very human rendering of a mythical woman who survives a tumultuous youth to find an aggressively calm middle age.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I feel empty
I love to read all kinds of books. I dont always read as much as id like since time is not always available to sit and read a book for an extended period of time. This books synopsis was very intriguing. It took me almost 6 months to read it though. But every time i picked it up it grabbed me. Demanded my attention. And then i finished it today. And now i feel empty. I was completely and utterly disappointed by the ending. So much so that i hate the time i lost in the past 6 months reading it every tiny chance i had. I will not recommend this book to my friends. It was a great story, too bad it had a horrible ending.