Glamour, Romance and Espionage: Read an Extract From The Royal Correspondent by Alexandra Joel

Glamour, Romance and Espionage: Read an Extract From The Royal Correspondent by Alexandra Joel

London, 4 May 1960

She gazed into the night from the limousine’s window, her heart beating quickly. An immense grey stone wall loomed before her. At its centre was the legendary balcony she’d viewed in countless newsreels featuring waving members of the world’s most famous family. But this was real life, and she was about to breach Buckingham Palace, the official residence of Her Majesty, Elizabeth the Second, Queen of the United Kingdom and Her Realms and Territories.

Leaning forward, she saw a uniformed policeman check the official crested card propped on top of the dashboard, then wave the sleek car through a pair of open gates, their gold‐tipped metal railings glistening like spears in the bright beam of a brace of lights. She wished she could stop time, or at least that the chauffeur would slow the limousine, for she wanted to savour every moment of this extraordinary evening. But the car purred on, past Grenadier Guards, still as waxwork models in their red coats and improbably tall black bearskin hats, then glided beneath an archway before drawing to a halt in a large inner courtyard.

With a quiver of excitement, she gathered the billowing skirts of her ice‐blue chiffon ball gown as a footman wearing a scarlet and gold coat, black stockings and knee breeches sprang forward and opened the car door. After following the directions of several other similarly attired attendants, she made her way towards a marble staircase adorned with a wide ribbon of rich ruby carpet. Pausing, she steadied herself, placed one white‐gloved hand on the gilt balustrade and, with what she hoped might be taken for the poise of a princess, swept up the stairs.

Another liveried servant clad in eighteenth‐century dress met her at the entrance to the ballroom. ‘Good evening,’ he said with a polite half bow. ‘Are you quite ready, ma’am?’

She straightened her bare, lightly tanned shoulders. ‘Ready as I’ll ever be.’

Continue reading the extract here…

Reviews

Alexandra Joel's The Royal Correspondent is, Quite Simply, Fabulous

Review | Our Review

22 February 2021

Alexandra Joel's The Royal Correspondent is, Quite Simply, Fabulous

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      Publisher details

      The Royal Correspondent
      Author
      Alexandra Joel
      Publisher
      HarperCollins
      Genre
      Historical Fiction
      Released
      03 February, 2021

      Synopsis

      Success would depend on taking a dangerous risk. When Blaise Hill, a feisty young journalist from one of Sydney's toughest neighbourhoods, is dispatched to London at the dawn of the swinging sixties to report on Princess Margaret's controversial marriage to an unconventional photographer, she is drawn into an elite realm of glamour and intrigue. As the nation faces an explosive upheaval, Blaise must grapple with a series of shocking scandals at the pinnacle of British society. Yet, haunted by a threat from her past and torn between two very different men, who can she trust in a world of hidden motives and shifting alliances? If she makes the wrong choice, she will lose everything. Inspired by real events, The Royal Correspondent is a compelling story of love and betrayal, family secrets and conspiracy that takes you from the gritty life of a daily newspaper to the opulent splendour of Buckingham Palace.
      Alexandra Joel
      About the author

      Alexandra Joel

      Alexandra Joel is the author of Parade: the Story of Fashion in Australia, a social history detailing the development of fashion, style and national identity. She is a former editor of the Australian edition of the international magazine Harper's Bazaar, and of Portfolio, Australia's first magazine for working women. She has also been a regular contributor of feature articles, interviews and reviews to a number of national and metropolitan publications including The Australian and the Sydney Morning Herald Good Weekend Magazine.More recently, Alexandra has been a practising counsellor and psychotherapist. She is an honours graduate from the University of Sydney and has a Graduate Diploma in Applied Psychology.

      Books by Alexandra Joel

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