The best books about the fascinating Queen Victoria

Christina Croft Author Of Queen Victoria's Granddaughters: 1860-1918
By Christina Croft

Who am I?

All my life, I have had a passion for history and, the moment I came upon Queen Victoria while browsing the history section in the local library, I was hooked! Far from being the dour Widow of Windsor, it was clear that she was a highly-intelligent, forward-thinking, often amusing, and often amused woman, with fascinating relatives and connections across the whole world. Her family life mirrored that of any ordinary family, with its ups and downs, its petty squabbles, and a myriad of contrasting characters, each with a unique and interesting story to tell. With so many avenues yet to explore, this is a passion that could last a lifetime!

I wrote...

Queen Victoria's Granddaughters: 1860-1918

By Christina Croft,

Book cover of Queen Victoria's Granddaughters: 1860-1918

What is my book about?

From a Russian saint, martyred in a mine shaft in Siberia, to the Queens of Norway, Greece, Romania, and Spain, Queen Victoria’s twenty-two granddaughters lived not only through the halcyon days of the European monarchies but also through tragedy and the horrors of war and revolution. Some, like the unassuming Princess Louise of Wales, lived and died in virtual obscurity while others, like the dazzling Queen Marie of Romania and the ill-fated Empress Alexandra of Russia, played a major and memorable role in world events; but, through all the upheavals and conflicts, and, even when wars had divided their nations, one person had bound them together and, to the end of their lives, all would remember ‘dearest grandmama’ – Queen Victoria – with love.

The books I picked & why

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Victoria R.I.

By Elizabeth Longford,

Book cover of Victoria R.I.

Why this book?

This was the first biography of Queen Victoria that I read and, to date, it remains the best! Effortlessly combing in the personal with the political, it not only portrays Victoria as a Queen but also as a woman, who could simultaneously be one of the most dominant monarchs of the 19th century, and as nervous as a child. A brilliant portrayal of a fascinating character, playing a major role in one of the most interesting eras in history!

My Memories of Six Reigns

By Princess Marie Louise,

Book cover of My Memories of Six Reigns

Why this book?

This is a charming book, filled with amusing and touching anecdotes by Queen Victoria’s granddaughter, Princess Marie Louise, whose lovely character shines through every page.  The simple style and lack of chronological order create the impression that the reader is sitting with the author as she simply recounts her remarkable memories of the people and places of another era. Just beautiful! 

Darling Child: Private Correspondence of Queen Victoria and the Crown Princess of Prussia 1871-1878

By Roger Fulford,

Book cover of Darling Child: Private Correspondence of Queen Victoria and the Crown Princess of Prussia 1871-1878

Why this book?

This is one of a series of books of letters between Queen Victoria and her eldest daughter, which gives a real insight into their characters and the obvious affection they shared. Sometimes gossipy and sometimes describing events of historical significance, it enables the reader to gain ‘inside information’ on numerous well-known characters and to experience the vagaries of life in a royal family. A must-have for any Queen Victoria aficionado! 

Queen Victoria and the Discovery of the Riviera

By Michael Nelson,

Book cover of Queen Victoria and the Discovery of the Riviera

Why this book?

This lovely book dispels the myth that, after Albert’s death, Queen Victoria spent forty years in Windsor Castle in perpetual mourning, as it describes her delight in her many holidays on the Cote D’Azur. The book introduces the Queen’s companions, John Brown and the Munshi, alongside many other well-known characters of the era, including the infamous Leopold II of the Belgians. "Oh, if only I were at Nice, I should recover!" she said during her final illness, and it is unsurprising that, at the time of her death, her aides were forced to cancel the plans she had made for her next visit to her beloved Riviera.  

Ask Sir James: The Life of Sire James Reid, Personal Physician to Queen Victoria

By Michaela Reid,

Book cover of Ask Sir James: The Life of Sire James Reid, Personal Physician to Queen Victoria

Why this book?

Based on the notes of Queen Victoria’s doctor, Sir James Reid, this book, written by his daughter, gives a wonderful insight into the relationships within the extended Royal Family as well as the numerous ailments with which they were afflicted. There are many amusing episodes, including the Queen’s indignation on hearing that doctors intended to remove her son-in-law’s eye, following a shooting accident; and her refusal to alter her diet to cure her frequent indigestion. Of all the books about Queen Victoria, none gives a more comprehensive account of her final hours, death, and the preparations for her funeral. 

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Queen Victoria, letters, and Queen Elizabeth II?

5,309 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Queen Victoria, letters, and Queen Elizabeth II.

Queen Victoria Explore 19 books about Queen Victoria
Letters Explore 18 books about letters
Queen Elizabeth II Explore 33 books about Queen Elizabeth II

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like A Lifelong Passion: Nicholas and Alexandra: Their Own Story, And Only to Deceive, and Kings, Queens & Courtiers: Intimate Portraits of the Royal House of Windsor from its foundation to the present day if you like this list.