An important portrait of Charles, Prince of Wales, that sheds light into previously unseen corners of his life.
The Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller
'[The book that] made headlines around the world.' Independent
He has lived his whole life in the public eye, yet he remains an enigma. He was born to be king, but he aims much higher. A landmark publication, Charles: The Heart of a King reveals Prince Charles in all his complexity: the passionate views that mean he will never be as remote and impartial as his mother; the compulsion to make a difference and the many and startling ways in which the heir to the throne of the United Kingdom and fifteen other realms has already made his mark.
The book offers fresh and fascinating insights into the first marriage that did so much to define him and an assessment of his relationship with the woman he calls, with unintended accuracy, his 'dearest wife': Camilla. We see Charles as a father and a friend, a serious figure and a joker. Life at court turns out to be full of hidden dangers and unexpected comedy.
Poignant, funny and often surprising, the first significant study of the Prince in over a decade reveals a man in sight of happiness yet still driven by anguish and a remarkable belief system, a charitable entrepreneur, activist, agitator and avatar of the Establishment who just as often tilts against it.
Based on multiple interviews with his friends and courtiers, palace insiders and critics, and access to Charles himself during research lasting more than a year, this biography explores the Prince’s philanthropy and his compulsive interventionism, his faith, his political leanings and the philosophy that means when he seeks harmony he sometimes creates controversy.
Gripping, at times astonishing, often laugh-out-loud, this is a royal biography unlike any other.
“A must-read … this important book is nothing short of a manual to our future King’s world-view ... and Mayer's book is the first comprehensive attempt to explore and explain what may lie ahead.”
“Primarily a celebration of a very special man.”
“A vivid and entertaining account of the extraordinary life of the man born to be King … provides us with a new picture of the heir.”
“[On Catherine Mayer] Shrewd, respected and notably well-disposed.”
“Exhaustive yet entertaining.”
Will Self, Guardian
“What does distinguish Mayer's book from many others on the same subject is its intelligence, wit and compassion. She is not uncritical of Charles – she is republican after all – but she is sympathetic to him and tries hard to understand him.”