Catarina Hurtig: Profession Prinsesse – translated to Danish.
Let me start out by saying that I wish I could have read the original Swedish version of this book. Unfortunately, the only version I could get my hands on, was the Danish translation.
From the beginning, I’m pleasantly surprised by Hurtig’s introduction. She comes across as likeable, and someone who is interested in the monarchy, but as she says – she would survive if it were to go away tomorrow as well.
The book covers the Scandinavian princesses, or those who were, – Mary, Alexandra, Victoria, Madeleine, Mette-Marit and Märtha Louise – and a few others, Mathilde, Maxima and Letizia. And then there is Charlotte Casiraghi who also seems to be included in these sorts of things, despite her lack of title. I could have wished for the Duchess of Cornwall instead of Charlotte, but I expect it would not have been glamorous enough.
There are factual errors here and there in the book, and while I’m not sure I agree with Hurtig’s opinions on everything, it is an interesting book, written much like Villemann’s København K from a journalist who covers the royals.
It is basically biographies of all the princesses, from birth until 2007. How they were raised, scandals in their past… and how they met their prince. I could have wished for a more analytical approach to a book where the title means “Career: Princess” – perhaps something about what the job demands and what the prerequisites might be.
Especially when we are told of the girls Felipe and Frederik “brought” home for their mamas to approve, but failed to get approval on. Hurtig makes it seem like perseverance paid off for the two – becausethere does not seem to be any major difference in Mary and Letizia compared to the previous girlfriends.
We’re also told of the “princess disease,” as it is called. Mary lost much weight before the wedding, Letizia is verging on being dangerously thin… and Victoria was openly acknowledged as having anorexia.
I think the subject of the book is interesting, but it fades into the background a bit, as the book reads like a longer article of Svensk Damtidning, instead of the potential such a book might have to analyse and contrast the demands on the position of princess in the 21st century.