Picks and Pans Review: Spotlight On...
It's hard to believe there is anything left to say about the face that launched a thousand books. But these offerings on Princess Diana, published to coincide with the first anniversary of her death on Aug. 31, should feed the habit of the most ravenous royals junkie.
The Day Diana Died by Christopher Andersen (Morrow, $27): Not for the faint of heart. With quotes from nurses, the priest who administered the princess's last rites, even the funeral employees who did her hair and makeup, Andersen's account is riveting, though sometimes very graphic. It won't make you like the Queen any better. After she learned of Di's death, the author says, the Queen called the British embassy in Paris to insist that any royal jewels on the princess be returned at once.
Diana: Her Life in Fashion by Georgina Howell (Rizzoli, $40): Heavy on photos, Howell's contribution to the canon features dishy quotes from the princess's stable of designers. ("I wanted to tell Lady Diana to improve her posture," confides Britain's Roland Klein, "but I didn't have the guts.")
Diana: Portrait of a Princess by Jayne Fincher (Simon & Schuster, $35): Fincher spent 18 years as the only female photographer in the royal press pool, and her picture book is a cut above most. Crystal-clear shots, many never before published, are complemented by Fincher's memories of the princess who became a friend.
Dodi and Diana: A Love Story by René Delorm with Barry Fox and Nadine Taylor (Tallfellow Press, $19.95): A starry-eyed account of the doomed pair's romance by Dodi's butler. So protective is Delorm of his late boss that he never mentions model Kelly Fisher, whom he must have known Dodi was two-timing after Diana came along. But Delorm's devotion can be touching. "You left me," he wrote in the condolence book at Dodi's funeral, and then dissolved into tears.