The Diana I Knew: Loving Memories of the Friendship Between an American Mother and Her Son's Nanny who Became the Princess of Wales

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Cliff Street Books, 1998 - Biography & Autobiography - 198 pages
10 Reviews
In 1980, Mary Robertson, an American living in London, welcomed a shy young nanny into her home to care for her nine-month-old son. Little did she know that this was the beginning of an extraordinary friendship that would last for seventeen years. She was surprised to learn that the nanny was Lady Diana Spencer, who would later become Diana, Princess of Wales, the most celebrated woman of our time.

In "The Diana I Knew," Mary portrays a gentle, unassuming teenager who blossomed into an assured, world-class beauty. She describes a private side to a woman few people knew intimately. This is an American woman's personal account of her unexpected and touching friendship with Diana.

Mary's unique memories of this remarkable woman include Diana's nonchalant reaction to Mary's discovery of her nanny's aristocratic background and the day-to-day building of a trusting, affectionate relationship which developed into a true friendship. As Diana's life dramatically changed when the royal courtship began, she turned to Mary for guidance. Even after the Robertsons returned to the United States just before the engagement, Diana wrote frequently, wishing to continue the friendship.

From receiving the gilt-edged invitations to the Royal Wedding to being charmed by Prince Charles at the glamorous pre-nuptial ball at Buckinham Palace, Mary captures the magic of the wedding of the century. Despite the unimaginable demands of her life and the unraveling of the fairy tale, Diana made time to see Mary and her family. From the Robertsons' private meeting with the Prince and Princess in Washington to an intimate family luncheon at her home in Kensington Palace, Diana's generosity of spirit andappreciation of simpler times always shone through.

The Diana who emerges in this book is a committed and sincere woman who "loathed formality," a radiant and exuberant princess who had "little use for the upper classes" and someone who felt at home with "ordinary people."

From the profound tragedy of Diana's death and the heartbreak of her funeral, Mary transforms her grief into this eloquent tribute to her beloved friend Diana, the Princess of Wales.

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User Review  - dd196406 - LibraryThing

Interesting account from the author about her friendship with Princess Diana. Diana was the nanny to the author's son in London before Diana became engaged to Prince Charles. The book covers Mrs ... Read full review

Review: The Diana I Knew: Loving Memories of the Friendship Between an American Mother and Her Son's Nanny Who Became the Princess of Wales

User Review  - Gena Divine - Goodreads

A quaint little book about a personal friendship with Princess Diana. Nice to see an alternative perspective other than press or official biographies. Very quick read. Read full review


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About the author (1998)

Mary Robertson is the William A. Moffett Chief Curator of Manuscripts at the Huntington Library.

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