Sunday, January 9, 2011

The King's Speech

Most likely you've heard the buzz about the excellent new film, The King's Speech. I concur with all that buzz. It's terrific with great performances by all of the actors, including Geoffrey Rush and Colin Firth. It's nice to start the new year with a trip back in history, being reminded of what I used to know and learning other aspects of it. The story of King George VI (brother of Edward VIII, who abdicated to be with Wallis Simpson, and father of current Queen, Elizabeth II) and his speech therapist, Lionel Logue, is a compelling one.

A bit of backstory: There is a companion book by Mark Logue, a grandson of Lionel, currently selling like hotcakes here. Mark was contacted by the film makers who were looking for more of the Logue side of the tale in the form of letters, diaries, photos and newspaper clippings. During a year long quest, a treasure trove was unearthed amongst Logue family members. Mark, working with Peter Conradi , has turned the material into a fascinating book, The King's Speech. The basics of the story have been included in bios of the King for years but only mentioning Logue. Lionel and the King enjoyed a life-long friendship which was then rare between "commoner" and king.

I always like to know as many sides to a story as possible and this book delivers. Hopefully, the
Queen will see the film. Her Dad was quite a guy, really.

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