It was the love story of the twentieth century -- the king and the commoner. In December 1936, King Edward VIII renounced the throne to "marry the woman I love, " Wallis Warfield Simpson, a twice-divorced American. His wife soon became one of the century''s most famous women. She was a woman of incredible style and dazzling wit but, until her death in 1986, she remained a figure of intrigue and mystery, and was both admired and reviled.
The first sympathetic portrait of this exceptional woman, The Duchess of Windsor dispels the decades of rumor and accusation to reveal the woman behind the legend. Author Greg King explores the myths and the facts about this fascinating couple, including: their life in exile in France as the Duke and Dutchess of Windsor; the Duchess''s hold over her husband; her alleged sexual secrets and experiences; the couple''s bitter relationship with the British Royal Family; and their involvement with Hitler and the Third Reich. From her birth in Pennsylvania in 1896 during the Gilded Age, to her death in 1986, Wallis Simpson traveled in a world of privilege, palaces, titles, high society, and love, and lived a life surrounded by hatreds, feuds, conspiracies, and lies. And she consorted with some of the most renowned and infamous figures of her day, including Lady Diana Cooper; Harold Nicholson and Vita Sackville West; Nancy Astor, Noel Coward; Cecil Beaton, The Mountbattens, Adolf Hitler, Winston Churchill, and hundreds of other politicians and presidents, dictators and socialites.
From the abdication crisis, for which the Duchess was wrongly blamed, to her life in exile with the Duke, this fascinating book not only explores the life of the Duke and Duchess, butof the glittering glamorous world they inhabited with such humor, joie de vivre, humor and compassion for others. Here readers are privy to the real Edward and Wallis, a couple who devoted enormous amounts of personal time and money to helping those less fortunate than themselves, including their years spent in the Bahamas, when Wallis devoted her time to improving the lives of native Bahamians.
At once a captivating love story and a revealing portrait, The Duchess of Windsor finally pays homage to an incomparable yet misunderstood woman.