By Michael Cox, FOSEL board member
William Kuhn, bestselling novelist and South End resident, will read from his latest book, Prince Harry Boy to Man, on Tuesday, April 10, at 6:30 PM. Kuhn has long explored the interior lives of high-ranking people, both in fiction and non-fiction. In the process he’s given readers a new perspective on the way we view 'noblesse oblige.'
In addition to serious, scholarly research, Kuhn has written biographies of prominent figures, like Jackie Kennedy Onassis (Reading Jackie: Her Autobiography in Books) and Benjamin Disraeli (The Politics of Pleasure: A Portrait of Benjamin Disraeli), as well as quirky people you’ve probably never heard of, like Henry and Mary Ponsonby and their life in the court of Queen Victoria. His first novel, Mrs. Queen Take the Train – a book about the scandal that erupts when a bored Queen Elizabeth strolls out of the palace in search of a little adventure – became a bestseller that was quickly optioned to be a motion picture. Of course this is remarkable but not surprising. Mrs. Queen is a delightful comic escapade, exposing the private side of the royalty without ever becoming vulgar. Unlike most of the political parody coming out of the UK, Kuhn’s novel shows the royalty with their hair down, not their pants – imagine Love Actually meets The Crown, as though Nick Hornsby (About a Boy) teamed up with Julian Fellows (Downton Abbey).
The author continues his tradition of ebulliently imagining history in his latest book, the lighthearted coming-of-age novel Prince Harry Boy to Man. In it Prince Henry of Wales is a young man battling the anxiety of his public responsibilities against the virility of his wild oats. He attempts to prove himself with his deployment to Afghanistan.
Kuhn mines his experience working in the Royal Archives at Windsor Castle to tell a satirical story of how an irresponsible prince stumbles on his vocation. In addition, the author will share personal anecdotes, including his impressions of a Christmas party at Buckingham Palace.
The event is free. The South End library is fully handicapped accessible. We serve refreshments. Books will be available for borrowing, sale and signing. Seating is limited.