Grace Kelly, as a child born in the late 80s, is just a vague celebrity. Everyone knows who she is–that gorgeous blonde actress who really did meet and marry her Prince Charming. I know she was tragically killed before her time. Really though…that’s about it.
My Days with Princess Grace of Monaco is a very sweet and sentimental description of the “Happily Ever After” days of Princess Grace’s life. In other words, what came after the wedding. Joan Dale’s memoir is filled with letters and tales of parties, clothes, and child-rearing. There are no scandals here, although there is some heartbreak. Dale desperately wants you to know the good woman Grace Kelly was, the hidden side, that the cameras did not see.
One thing that struck me about this book is the modesty that Joan Dale had. In every letter back to her parents, even after years of friendship and familiarity, she just keeps saying, “Well, they sure must like us if they keep having us around!” This is so different from what would be expected now. She was always grateful for the royal attention and friendship, and never took it for granted.
I did get a little bored halfway through…but I am not a mother, so the childrearing phase of life did nothing for me. Also, the organization of the book frustrated me some. Joan and Martin’s letters were published as a whole, but “G&R’s” letters were just bits and pieces thrown in a paragraph. I would think it would be the other way around–that Joan would have actually had their letters kept? Maybe she wasn’t allowed to publish them. It just bothered my organizational sense. If you’re going to print a whole letter, don’t skimp on the reply!
It was interesting to read about Princess Grace’s life from a dear friend of hers. I would have liked to read more about the romance…but Joan had not known her then. Maybe I’ll have to look that up!
Disclaimer: I received this ARC from NetGalley in return for review.