The Good Servant
By Fern Britton
From the No.1 bestselling author of Daughters of Cornwall comes an extraordinary tale of family secrets and epic love.Tweet
I read this book as part of The Three Horseshoes Reading Group. We were delighted to receive copies of this new release and it was timed perfectly as an easy summer read.
It was enlightening to see how different life was for royal servants in the 1930s compared to today. Although the book is a fictionalised account of Marion Crawford aka Crawfie’s professional life as a nanny, the key decisions that have a huge impact on her life are based on fact.
Loyalty, deception and vulnerability are themes which are interspersed throughout. The feel of the book is a little gossipy - he said this, she said that - but it does help to build a picture of Crawfie’s character and the main influences in her life. I would recommend to anyone who is looking for a light read.
A work of fiction, centred on the true story of Marion Crawford, ‘Crawfie’, the governess to Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret.
The book is meticulously researched and Fern Britton cleverly imagines Crawfie’s relationships with other members of the royal household, particularly Sir Alan Lascelles (Tommy).
The book exquisitely describes British life of a glorious time gone by, starting in 1932. It acknowledges the turbulent years following the death of King George V, covering the relationship of King Edward VIII and Mrs Simpson, his abdication, the Duke of York acceding the throne and WWII.
We follow Crawfie’s life of service, right up until Princess Elizabeth marries Prince Philip, and beyond. Crawfie finally marries her fiancé, George, but then makes some bad decisions that affect her for the rest of her life.
It is a tale of misplaced loyalty, naïveté, deception and how a lifetime of integrity, dedication and reputation can be lost in a matter of moments.