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My Name is Victoria

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'You are my sister now,' Victoria said, quietly and solemnly. 'Never forget it. I love you like a sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.' Miss V. Conroy is good at keeping secrets. She likes to sit as quiet as a mouse, neat and discreet. But when her father sends her to Kensington Palace to become the companion to Princess Victoria, Miss V soon finds that she 'You are my sister now,' Victoria said, quietly and solemnly. 'Never forget it. I love you like a sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.' Miss V. Conroy is good at keeping secrets. She likes to sit as quiet as a mouse, neat and discreet. But when her father sends her to Kensington Palace to become the companion to Princess Victoria, Miss V soon finds that she can no longer remain in the shadows. Miss V's father has devised a strict set of rules for the young princess, which he calls the Kensington System. It governs her behaviour and keeps her locked away from the world. He says it is for the princess's safety, but Victoria herself is convinced that it is to keep her lonely, and unhappy. Torn between loyalty to her father and her growing friendship with the wilful and passionate Victoria, Miss V has a decision to make: to continue in silence, or to speak out. By turns thrilling, dramatic and touching, this is the story of Queen Victoria's childhood as you've never heard it before.


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'You are my sister now,' Victoria said, quietly and solemnly. 'Never forget it. I love you like a sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.' Miss V. Conroy is good at keeping secrets. She likes to sit as quiet as a mouse, neat and discreet. But when her father sends her to Kensington Palace to become the companion to Princess Victoria, Miss V soon finds that she 'You are my sister now,' Victoria said, quietly and solemnly. 'Never forget it. I love you like a sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.' Miss V. Conroy is good at keeping secrets. She likes to sit as quiet as a mouse, neat and discreet. But when her father sends her to Kensington Palace to become the companion to Princess Victoria, Miss V soon finds that she can no longer remain in the shadows. Miss V's father has devised a strict set of rules for the young princess, which he calls the Kensington System. It governs her behaviour and keeps her locked away from the world. He says it is for the princess's safety, but Victoria herself is convinced that it is to keep her lonely, and unhappy. Torn between loyalty to her father and her growing friendship with the wilful and passionate Victoria, Miss V has a decision to make: to continue in silence, or to speak out. By turns thrilling, dramatic and touching, this is the story of Queen Victoria's childhood as you've never heard it before.

30 review for My Name is Victoria

  1. 4 out of 5

    Fables&Wren

    Thank you to NetGallery for providing me an advanced reader copy in exchange for my honest review. Two girls named Victoria. One is the princess and is held under the thumb of Sir John Conroy, and the other is the companion of the princess placed there by her father to keep an eye on the princess. With the strict living arrangement, the girls find comfort in each other even though they are not completely satisfied with their lives. I first want to state that this book comes out (agai Thank you to NetGallery for providing me an advanced reader copy in exchange for my honest review. Two girls named Victoria. One is the princess and is held under the thumb of Sir John Conroy, and the other is the companion of the princess placed there by her father to keep an eye on the princess. With the strict living arrangement, the girls find comfort in each other even though they are not completely satisfied with their lives. I first want to state that this book comes out (again?) on 05/08 and if you like historical fiction books, this book will probably be right up your alley! I like some historical fiction, like The Infernal Devices, The Dark Days Club, and some others but I am not someone who goes out looking for historical fiction. I say that because I want you to go into my review knowing that I am not a big H-Fiction fan and this was written by someone who just thinks they are okay and not the best thing to happen to man-kind. So, anyway, this book was dragging for me. I am not sure if it was because there wasn’t a lot of action and that the plot was lacking some for me, but for some reason I found myself enjoying it enough to keep going, but had to force myself to pick it up each time instead of reading one of my other books. I take complete blame for that though. I went into this book knowing it wasn’t going to have huge fight scenes and such, but for some reason I was still waiting for them. The characters weren’t very three-dimensional, but felt as if they had a lot of potential to be so. I found myself caring for the girls and hoping things would turn around for them, but it was more of how an acquaintance feels for someone, and not how a friend would feel, if that makes sense to anyone but me. I believe this is based off of real-historical events and settings. I’m not a huge history-buff, so I know very little about Queen/Princess Victoria and what all happened during her life. This was very enlightening on what could have happened though. The author, of course, has creative liberties and might have changed a few things, but I believe she tried to stick to the main story as much as she could. To conclude, I think if I was a bigger fan of historical fiction, I would have enjoyed it more. So I will give this an even three star rating to show how on the fence I am about it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Karen Whittard

    Thank you to Netgalley, bloomsbury publishing plc and Lucy Worsley for the opportunity to read this book for an honest review. I voluntarily reviewed an Advance reader copy of this book. You can find my review on both Goodreads and Amazon. On goodreads.com/karenwhittard and on Amazon under k.e.whittard from publication date. This is a great book to introduce young ones into historical fiction. Lucy's Wealth of knowledge as always shine through. Children from age 7 would enjoy this book. It tells the story of queen Victori Thank you to Netgalley, bloomsbury publishing plc and Lucy Worsley for the opportunity to read this book for an honest review. I voluntarily reviewed an Advance reader copy of this book. You can find my review on both Goodreads and Amazon. On goodreads.com/karenwhittard and on Amazon under k.e.whittard from publication date. This is a great book to introduce young ones into historical fiction. Lucy's Wealth of knowledge as always shine through. Children from age 7 would enjoy this book. It tells the story of queen Victoria and her charge lehZen who quickly becomes a second mother to her. Victoria is basically controlled by her mother and Sir John conroy. As Lucy always does on her BBC historical programmes she tells mostly true historical facts but also tells a side we may not have heard before. A side Lucy believes could very well have happened. So when Sir Conroy brings his daughter Miss V into the picture instead of not getting on as history tells us they strik up a friendship. It is lovely to see Victoria have a friend instead of just being controlled by her mother and Sir Conroy. I thought the girls friendship was touching and very sweet. This is a great book for a young reader. Lucy really knows her history. I love her tv programmes and she uses this knowledge to write a very good historical book. I look forward to seeing more from Lucy. Happy reading everyone

  3. 4 out of 5

    Eleanor (bookishcourtier)

    If you've read my review of Lady Mary by the same author, you would probably guess what I am going to say about this one, because I had basically the same problems with it. I understand that these books are maybe for younger YA readers, and that is fine; it just isn't for me. But what I cannot stand is when the character is supposed to be sixteen, seventeen, even eighteen years old and they still feel like a ten year old. Lucy Worsley needs to work on developing her characters as they get olde If you've read my review of Lady Mary by the same author, you would probably guess what I am going to say about this one, because I had basically the same problems with it. I understand that these books are maybe for younger YA readers, and that is fine; it just isn't for me. But what I cannot stand is when the character is supposed to be sixteen, seventeen, even eighteen years old and they still feel like a ten year old. Lucy Worsley needs to work on developing her characters as they get older, because at the moment, they stay the same for the whole book. And it would be understandable if the characters stayed the same age, but they don't. I did enjoy the historical side of it. I don't really know much about the Victorians - more specifically, the royal family. I have studied a bit about the industrial revolution, but not much about the royals themselves. I think I would like to know more though. This book was a bit of an alternative history, and more speculative than Lady Mary, and I recommend reading the author's note at the end of the book. The characters in it are real people, but I did enjoy the ending she gave it. Lucy Worsley's books are very easy to read. I read the majority of this in one sitting. They are engaging and enjoyable, and I do enjoy my reading experience, even if the book is not the most memorable and I don't really find myself attached to any of the characters. I would recommend this for a younger reader, or maybe someone who wants to transition into YA but doesn't want to be reading ACOTAR straight away, for example. It is fun, I will admit, and I might read her other books if I have the chance. BUT that being said, these books would never really make a favourites list of mine, and honestly, Lucy Worsley's non-fiction books actually look a lot more interesting.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    This book, which is aimed at older children/young teenagers, tells us of the lives of two girls named Victoria. The more famous of these two is the Princess Victoria, daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Kent. With the death of a number of her uncles, she becomes heir to the throne of Great Britain. The other Victoria is “Miss V.”, the daughter of Sir John Conroy. She is roughly the same age as the princess and becomes her companion. Princess Victoria lives in Kensington Palace, with h This book, which is aimed at older children/young teenagers, tells us of the lives of two girls named Victoria. The more famous of these two is the Princess Victoria, daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Kent. With the death of a number of her uncles, she becomes heir to the throne of Great Britain. The other Victoria is “Miss V.”, the daughter of Sir John Conroy. She is roughly the same age as the princess and becomes her companion. Princess Victoria lives in Kensington Palace, with her mother, a widow, and her governess and teacher, Baroness Lehzen. Sir John Conroy is comptroller of this household and, with the Duchess of Kent, they had devised something called the “Kensington System”. This ensured that the young princess was kept isolated and obedient, under the strict control of the adults around her. Miss V. is brought into the household at the age of 10 to be a companion for the princess, but her reception is not particularly enthusiastic. Princess Victoria is very unhappy with her restricted life and is highly distrustful of her young companion. Lucy Worsley has used real historical characters and settings in this novel, but she has used her imagination to develop the relationships between them. I loved the “what if” plot development, which took me by surprise. This was a very enjoyable read for me. The settings were described in a way which made them visible in my mind and the characters were well developed and interesting. I am a fan of Lucy Worsley’s history programmes and I have to say, I’m a fan of her novel, “My Name is Victoria”! I would like to thank NetGalley for enabling me to read this novel, in return for my honest review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    A book of two halves - the first I enjoyed; the second I didn't.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Greyson Richter | Use Your Words

    Trigger Warnings: Sexism, abuse Everyone knows about Queen Victoria, but of the child, she was before the crown? And better yet, what of the other Victoria? The one forced to befriend the captive princess? “You are my sister now,” she said quietly and solemnly. “Never forget it. I love you like my sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.” My Name is Victoria is a great glimpse into history, sharing the story of Queen Victoria when she was just a princess and the potential friend she found in her captive’s daughtprincess?abuseEveryone Trigger Warnings: Sexism, abuse Everyone knows about Queen Victoria, but of the child, she was before the crown? And better yet, what of the other Victoria? The one forced to befriend the captive princess? “You are my sister now,” she said quietly and solemnly. “Never forget it. I love you like my sister, and you are my only friend in all the world.” My Name is Victoria is a great glimpse into history, sharing the story of Queen Victoria when she was just a princess and the potential friend she found in her captive’s daughter, Victoria Conroy. Now, like all historical fiction based on a person who really did exist, Worsley took much creative licence while sharing her version of Princess Victoria’s story. And I really enjoyed it. I read Lady Mary by the same author last month and all though that was, for me, much slower, My Name is Victoria indeed had much of the same problems. I find Worsley’s books a bit of the boring side, they’re just not hugely engaging but that might just be the genre as a whole for me as there aren’t a whole lot of historical fiction books that I have enjoyed. I also find that Worsley’s characters tend to not mature as they age. The voice of her characters tends to stay the same throughout the whole novel and there just isn’t a whole lot of personal growth going on. “It is hard, my girls!” the duchess said. “It is difficult being a woman in this world. We lack power; we lack strength; we lack intelligence.” But Victoria broke the chain. She snatched her hand away and turned once more to the wall. “I don’t believe it,” she muttered. “I will have power. I will have strength. And I will always, always hate Sir John.” I will say that this was a little more engaging than Lady Mary and I really enjoyed the final twist! I was worried for a moment that this would go down the path of two friends fighting over a guy and I’m very glad it didn’t. All in all, I did enjoy My Name is Victoria and I think it’s a great entry book for young readers wanting to learn about history without having to slug through non-fiction. “We are like two old prisoners in a jail, are we not? We’re used to each other—after all, we’ve shared a cell for a long time now.” — Thank you to Netgalley for providing me an advanced reader copy in exchange for my honest review. ___ │Blog│Instagram│Twitter│Tumblr│

  7. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    (originally posted on The Writing Hufflepuff) Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book by Netgalley and the publisher (thank you!) in return for an honest review This one was a bit disappointing to me. Last month I read a similar book from Worsley, but about Queen Mary, which I had (mostly) the same problems with as this one, so I guess Worsley's books are just not for me? Because I love lists let's sum up these problems - Not much happens?? This is the biggest problem with (originally posted on The Writing Hufflepuff) Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book by Netgalley and the publisher (thank you!) in return for an honest review This one was a bit disappointing to me. Last month I read a similar book from Worsley, but about Queen Mary, which I had (mostly) the same problems with as this one, so I guess Worsley's books are just not for me? Because I love lists let's sum up these problems - Not much happens?? This is the biggest problem with both this one and Lady Mary: there isn't much of a plot. I mean, there technically is, but it doesn't feel like it because barely anything happens. There's just,, a lot of talking? - Because of this it's just,, a bit boring? I feel like this book could've been so much more interesting given the concept and the historical people it focues on. I mean there's so much political intrigue, but because we see everything through the eyes Miss V. we barely know anything about it - That plot twist was,,, not to my liking. This is a very personal thing which led to my two star rating instead of three, and shouldn't keep you from not reading this book. The plot twist itself was well-written as there were enough hints for it to not be entirely out of the blue, but not that many that it was predictable (though I did see it coming) and Worsley explains that this is an alternative history, just her exploring a 'what if', it's not some conspiracy theory haha, I just personally didn't like it? - I feel like the characters were just not that interesting either? Worsley knows her stuff, especially when it comes to Queen Victoria, so it's not a lack of research, but the characters were kinda flat and while we follow both girls through childhood to their teenage years, I just don't feel they changed much? Also Miss V.'s voice was just,,, so lack-luster? But!! There were definitely things I liked. Like I said, if it weren't for the plot twist I would've given this three stars (Honestly me not liking the plot twist probably has to do with the tv show and maaaybe with my crush on Jenna Coleman but,,) - The friendship between the girls!! They were probably not such great friends in reality, but Worsley wanted to explore this what if and honestly it was lovely. At first they didn't really know what to make of each other of course, but in the end they love and support each other, want what's best for the other, would risk anything and everything, know each other like the back of their hand, were willing to give up their own happiness for the other's... It was so great to see, even though Queen Victoria probably hated Miss V. in reality lmao - Despite not much happening and the characters feeling a bit flat, it's clear that Worsley knows what she's talking about. It really does feel like you're transferred to the 1800s - While Miss. V didn't change that much, I do like how she eventually stood up to her father - Queen Victoria's support system! Of course she was isolated, but she still had a small group (including Miss V.) that would do anything for her and loved her with all their heart - Not much is known about Miss V. Conroy, so it's nice to see more about her - Dash!! I don't think Worsley's books are for me, but if you love historical fiction than I do recommend checking them out. There's a good chance you won't have these problems after all!

  8. 4 out of 5

    George Fowles

    As Worsley is a curator at Kensington and a trusted historian, I know that people’s names, the places, and events used by the story are accurate, but I also loved the fictional twist that she weaves the story around, which is especially clear in the must read epilogue. I love that she is playing with the fact that we can never truly know what life was like under the real Kensington System, and she uses the unreliability of the young Victoria’s melodramatic diaries to create a thorough enjoyable As Worsley is a curator at Kensington and a trusted historian, I know that people’s names, the places, and events used by the story are accurate, but I also loved the fictional twist that she weaves the story around, which is especially clear in the must read epilogue. I love that she is playing with the fact that we can never truly know what life was like under the real Kensington System, and she uses the unreliability of the young Victoria’s melodramatic diaries to create a thorough enjoyable piece of historical fiction. I thought the ending was fun to think about, even though I saw it coming but thought it couldn’t possibly happen because of how preposterous it was. It serves to prove that we must remember that all presentations we see/read of historical people are always a perception.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kirsty

    I received a copy via Net Galley. I previously read Lucy's other YA novel Eliza Rose and I really enjoyed it. These novels are aimed at younger readers, however, I think that they are enjoyable reads and a good introduction to the historical fiction genre. When reading these books you can tell that Lucy is clearly passionate about history and has a good knowledge of the subject that she is writing about. This novel follows a young Victoria and her companion Miss V Conroy. Miss V Conroy is placed I received a copy via Net Galley. I previously read Lucy's other YA novel Eliza Rose and I really enjoyed it. These novels are aimed at younger readers, however, I think that they are enjoyable reads and a good introduction to the historical fiction genre. When reading these books you can tell that Lucy is clearly passionate about history and has a good knowledge of the subject that she is writing about. This novel follows a young Victoria and her companion Miss V Conroy. Miss V Conroy is placed in the palace by her father to keep an eye on the young princess. This story tells a different story to what the history books tells us. I really enjoyed reading Lucy's take on the events and the people. I know very little about Queen Victoria and after watching Victoria the TV show I really want to read more about her. This was a great introduction and I liked the surprising turn that this story took. I really hope that Lucy will write similar books to this one in the future as they are such enjoyable reads.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Gabby

    review coming to my blog soon; alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com

  11. 5 out of 5

    Aditi ~ •A Thousand Words A Million Books

    AS SEEN ON: A THOUSAND WORDS A MILLION BOOKS I received an ARC from Bloomsbury India in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own. Short and Sweet: A fun, easy to read take on the young list of Queen Victoria that will have you smiling and desperate for more. When I got the opportunity to read Lucy Worsely’s debut novel last year from Bloomsbury India, I jumped in joy. While I enjoyed the beginning, and learning all about Tudor court and how it functioned, the AS SEEN ON: A THOUSAND WORDS A MILLION BOOKS I received an ARC from Bloomsbury India in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own. Short and Sweet: A fun, easy to read take on the young list of Queen Victoria that will have you smiling and desperate for more. When I got the opportunity to read Lucy Worsely’s debut novel last year from Bloomsbury India, I jumped in joy. While I enjoyed the beginning, and learning all about Tudor court and how it functioned, the latter half of the book dragged a little bit, making me not love the book as much . I guess that’s probably why it took me a little while to pick up My Name is Victoria, because of the slow nature of the second half of the previous book and I really needed to get myself in the mood for it. My Name is Victoria, however, had none of the problems that I faced in Eliza Rose and proved to be an easy to read and immersive middle grade tale about the era. Let’s go more into detail: PLOT AND IDEA: The author is a curator at the Kensington Palace where the young Queen Victoria spent her days in seclusion under the control of her mother and her comptroller. While the idea itself was based on the author’s knowledge of the Queen’s life, with one major change to the storyline, it was still a good read. The story flowed really well, starting from the time Miss V. Conroy is taken to be playmate to a young Princess Victoria and ends during Victoria’s ascension to the throne. WRITING: Lucy Worsely managed to capture the era and the mind sets of the world at that time through a girl of ages twelve to eighteen. As Miss V. Conroy and Princess Victoria grew through the book, the writing grew as well. From play time and dogs to boys, marriage and the throne I loved seeing how the future queen and her friend grew. CHARACTERS: While I’m talking about the characters is where the reason that this book isn’t a five star read comes out for me. While the book constantly had the same entertaining pace, it was the narrator, Miss V. Conroy who I had a slight problem with. There was nothing wrong with her but I just found her lacking a strong personality that I associate with teenage girls. She felt no hurt at being called “a bit boring” and “the little mouse.” She felt like she had to do nothing but care for Victoria and didn’t care about herself. Her sense of duty and responsibility overpowered everything she could have been and she just felt like too good a character with absolutely zero flaws and it made it slightly annoying and unbelievable. CONCLUSION: If you’re into middle grade historical novels, there will probably be none more accurate than My Name Is Victoria! An easy flowing, wholly immersive tale. 4 stars.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard

    Thank you so much to NetGalley and Candlewick for the eARC in exchange for an honest review This is a really solid 3.5 stars I thoroughly enjoyed the focus of this book being on the Kensington System! It's always something that has fascinated me and it always is mentioned in passing in historical fictions but never really used. I had never even thought of what it was like for those being monitored and forced to enforce the System so I really enjoyed this perspective. In add Thank you so much to NetGalley and Candlewick for the eARC in exchange for an honest review This is a really solid 3.5 stars I thoroughly enjoyed the focus of this book being on the Kensington System! It's always something that has fascinated me and it always is mentioned in passing in historical fictions but never really used. I had never even thought of what it was like for those being monitored and forced to enforce the System so I really enjoyed this perspective. In addition, Worsley did a great job of painting how dark and out of touch the palace was with the rest of the world from the start! It made the renovation of Kensington effect me by perking up. The Young Victoria is one of my all-time favourite movies so I always imagine Victoria as a 20-30 something year old proper strong put together woman...while I think my default is still that, it was incredibly enjoyable to watch the soon to be iconic Queen, throw tantrums and play the System. I found the ending "twist" to be incredibly predictable. I never guess ANY twists in books and I picked up on what was happening by like chapter 4. That being said, I don't think the book took itself particularly serious as a mystery--rather, it was a fun fluffy historical fiction where the villain gets his just desserts and our Victorias' get their own happily ever after.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Colleen's Conclusions

    I thought I would like My name is Victoria especially after reading some of the Gallagher Girls books but I couldn't get into this book. The plot had promise, as well as the friendship between the two characters but it was so slow. The best part about the book was the dog Dash. I liked Dash a lot and my heart broke for the girl when she almost had to give him away. (Slight spoiler there.) Thank you Netgalley for giving me the chance to read this.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Katy Noyes

    4.5 stars Tapping perfectly into the current thirst for all things Victoria, this will be of interest to readers older than Worsley's target age group, as well as upper primary/lower secondary students. I loved Eliza Rose, I love Worsley's enthusiastic and passionate TV work, and think she's already done some sterling work bringing history to life for a new generation. Here, we get another unknown and (with licence taken) unusual look at scenes 'behind the crown' - at Queen 4.5 stars Tapping perfectly into the current thirst for all things Victoria, this will be of interest to readers older than Worsley's target age group, as well as upper primary/lower secondary students. I loved Eliza Rose, I love Worsley's enthusiastic and passionate TV work, and think she's already done some sterling work bringing history to life for a new generation. Here, we get another unknown and (with licence taken) unusual look at scenes 'behind the crown' - at Queen Victoria's days as an imprisoned princess, and a girl who was asked to be her companion - and to spy on her. I couldn't find out much about the real 'Miss V Conroy' though was was real, she (as well as her siblings) was charged with playing with the young Victoria, and did spend many years with her before Victoria's ascension to the throne. Here, she is a fully fleshed young woman, daughter to the hated Sir John Conroy, 'companion' himself to Victoria's Duchess mother, angling for power and controlling the princess with his own children. Called 'Miss V' by everyone, to distinguish her from bother her older sister and the princess with whom she shares a new, Miss V unwillingly but dutifully does her father's bidding, reporting back regularly on Victoria's frame of mind, her schemes, her very thoughts. She grows from a dutiful girl of 11 to a composed and spirited 16 year old, alongside her playmate, and we see the life the princess is likely to have lived under the crippling 'Kensington System' of Sir John's creation. As ever, Worsley creates a full world of characters and locations, with gardens and palaces and coaches bringing the period to life for the reader. There are powerful scenes showing the impetuousness of the restrained young Victoria, the power struggle going on around her, how the public felt about her, and the meeting with cousins and suitors. She's a different character to the one we've seen recently on television, the one that I remember from biographies I read as a girl - but Worsley has an answer for that too, and it may not be quite what you'd expect. The ending, while I could see it coming, is one that's going to surprise many, and needs a little pinch of salt. However, I loved the idea of it, and everything that came before. I enjoy historical books that help make sense of the past, put events in context - here we see the royal family's issues with succession, the connections with family abroad, not much of the struggles of the everyday working classes, but the important story of how Victoria's background came to be important in her later reign. Miss V is the heart of the book, the moral heart as well as our narrator, and it's lovely to witness such a famous queen in her younger days. I imagine most readers will look forward to the later scenes in the book when they know a certain German prince will likely make an appearance. And yes, he does... Enjoy! Cleverly constructed, lots of insight into real people and real times, this is likely to appeal more to female readers I would guess, with lots of talk of dresses and dances. It's a different take on a fascinating woman, just as the recent 'Lydia' by Natasha Farrant made you look at Austen's youngest Bennett sister with fresh eyes. Enjoyable look at one of our most famous monarchs, one for ages 10-15. With thanks to Netgalley for the advance e-copy.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Misty Wilson read.fine.print

    I enjoyed this book immensely. It’s the story of young Queen Victoria, told from the perspective of the queen’s playmate whose name is also Victoria, but they call her “Miss V.” Lucy Worsley is a prolific author and the Curator for England’s Historic Royal Palaces. She has written several books about British royalty, and she’s obviously a historian who has studied the actual artifacts and settings of which she speaks. SO I enjoyed reading this, with the knowledge that it was written f I enjoyed this book immensely. It’s the story of young Queen Victoria, told from the perspective of the queen’s playmate whose name is also Victoria, but they call her “Miss V.” Lucy Worsley is a prolific author and the Curator for England’s Historic Royal Palaces. She has written several books about British royalty, and she’s obviously a historian who has studied the actual artifacts and settings of which she speaks. SO I enjoyed reading this, with the knowledge that it was written from an educated perspective. BUT since it is fiction, and apparently Queen Victoria’s daughter Beatrice destroyed a lot of Victoria’s old journals and letters, it is fun that the author allowed herself to speculate to fill in the gaps. This means that no matter how educated you are on British royalty (me: not at all) you are still kept in suspense about how the story goes! Miss V (the playmate) is the daughter of John Conroy, the manager of Kensington Palace and the developer of a system that kept Queen Victoria safe but isolated for most of her young life. Miss V is stuck between her father and her budding friendship with the queen. And that’s all I’m gonna say about that! No spoilers here. I have never had much interest in British royalty. Emily Blount in the movie The Young Victoria sparked my interest though, and now after reading this book I admit I’m intrigued! As far as adult content goes, there isn’t any and this book would be great for even a middle school aged kid.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    Actual rating 3.5 ARC recieved via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Adult me would give this a 3.5 but I think it's a brilliant introduction to historical fiction for 8-12 year olds and if I was younger would probably be a strong 4 This is a lovely tale of genuine friendship forming between two very different little girls. Princess (later Queen) Victoria and Miss V. Conroy. Miss V. is sent to live with Victoria to give her appropriate company for age. There are questions o Actual rating 3.5 ARC recieved via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Adult me would give this a 3.5 but I think it's a brilliant introduction to historical fiction for 8-12 year olds and if I was younger would probably be a strong 4 This is a lovely tale of genuine friendship forming between two very different little girls. Princess (later Queen) Victoria and Miss V. Conroy. Miss V. is sent to live with Victoria to give her appropriate company for age. There are questions over the loyalty of Miss V's father, John Conroy, who works at the palace and his main job is to protect Victoria and her family. The friendship between the girls grows in a lovely, authentic way. They're pushed together and things are initially a bit awkward but their friendship is beautiful by the end. It's a real coming of age story and one that we don't see very often in terms of royalty. I've never really read about Queen Victoria's childhood before and I enjoyed it a lot. I also love that this is written by a real historian- I can trust it to be a more accurate story and it makes for a such a good children's historical fic. I would definitely recommend this one and will look to read Lucy Worsley's first novel Eliza Rose in the future.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Dianna

    I was charmed by this quick read. Eleven-year-old Miss V. Conroy is taken to Kensington Palace as a companion to the the future Queen Victoria, who is the same age. But why does Her Royal Highness feel that everyone is conspiring against her? Why is the palace shabby and dirty? And why does Miss V's father seem to be universally hated? I was not expecting to like this book as much as I did, but the story was good, I liked protagonist Miss V quite a lot, I liked the writing style that I was charmed by this quick read. Eleven-year-old Miss V. Conroy is taken to Kensington Palace as a companion to the the future Queen Victoria, who is the same age. But why does Her Royal Highness feel that everyone is conspiring against her? Why is the palace shabby and dirty? And why does Miss V's father seem to be universally hated? I was not expecting to like this book as much as I did, but the story was good, I liked protagonist Miss V quite a lot, I liked the writing style that matches her personality, and I thought the ending was perfect (and liked it no less from having guessed it partway through the book). Recommended!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Hauntedbybooks

    This was an interesting tale of two girls named Victoria. This book is based on true historical events but the author did her own spin on it. This book is full of friendship and the girls discovering who they are, especially Miss V. I really liked the authors spin on what happened to Princess Victoria.  I thought it was interesting and a creative twist. I don't want to say too much because I feel like I'll spoil it. It was a delightful read!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. This is a fascinating and enjoyable account and I would recommend it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kinsey Crosby

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I loved this book so much. However, the ending has thrown me so much because of the switch between Victoria and Miss.V.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Debra Petersen

    A well writen and entertaining novel, but I did knock off a star because of the willingness needed to overcome the obsticle of disbelief.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Salima

    interesting twist on what really happened

  23. 5 out of 5

    Taylor

    Thank you for the e arc netgalley I love historical fiction and this is no exception. This almost reminds me of A Little Princess retelling but about a real queen.it was lovely

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ana Lourdes Barrera

    She beats the System!! It's great to imagine that Queen Victoria did beat the System, and had the chance to plot against Conroy,and made peace with her mother! This has been one of the best reads!!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Emilee

    A delightful reimagining of the history of young Queen Victoria. I am a huge fan of royals throughout history and this book is a great addition to that genre. Worsley paints a very clear picture of a sassy, impetuous young queen and her closest confidante Miss V. Most of the book focuses on the two girls quite early on in their lives, when they are about 11 to 14. For this reason, the book felt more aimed toward a middle grade audience. It was quite slow going for a while but also felt quite bel A delightful reimagining of the history of young Queen Victoria. I am a huge fan of royals throughout history and this book is a great addition to that genre. Worsley paints a very clear picture of a sassy, impetuous young queen and her closest confidante Miss V. Most of the book focuses on the two girls quite early on in their lives, when they are about 11 to 14. For this reason, the book felt more aimed toward a middle grade audience. It was quite slow going for a while but also felt quite believable. Worsley had actually convinced me that this was the actual history of Queen Victoria and I was waiting for the twist. Worsley has done an impeccable job with intertwining actual history with fiction so that fake events were were made that much more believable. She paints a wonderful picture with her setting descriptions. I was easily able to imagine the layout of Kensington Palace and anywhere else the girls traveled. The twist at the end was a worthwhile payoff. I would love to see more from Worsley in the vein of a sequel or novella following up after where My Name is Victoria leaves off. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone with a bent for historical fiction, especially that of the British monarchy. Be prepared for a slow slug through the first half until it picks up pace, but definitely give it a chance.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Kirsty

    I requested this book for review ages ago knowing I would love it and I certainly did so much so that I'm currently awaiting my preorder of a signed edition to drop through my letterbox from waterstones any day now.. For me Lucy's Worsley's historical fiction really hits the spot. It's well informed and clever and I can gladly recommend it to my students without worrying that they'll get really misinformed ideas about the historical period covered. I've been a bit geeky over Que I requested this book for review ages ago knowing I would love it and I certainly did so much so that I'm currently awaiting my preorder of a signed edition to drop through my letterbox from waterstones any day now.. For me Lucy's Worsley's historical fiction really hits the spot. It's well informed and clever and I can gladly recommend it to my students without worrying that they'll get really misinformed ideas about the historical period covered. I've been a bit geeky over Queen Victoria of late. I didn't see the show on ITV about her early reign but I read the book linked to it and was left wanting more and this book helps to prolong my geeky obsession. I've ended up fascinated about young Victoria and the left she lived prior to becoming Queen and the challenges she faced from the way she was forced to live under the Kensington system and how she broke free of it once she was able. My Name is Victoria focuses on Victoria as a child and sows you how the Kensington System worked and gives you real insight into how life may have been like for Young Victoria. I really enjoyed getting to know her and see how her friendship with the daughter of the man controlling her develops and hers to change her path for the future. All in all historical fiction I can rave about. I loved it and want more like it from Lucy Worsley.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    I wasn't a huge fan of this book, mostly because I found the plot to be very mundane without a lot of action or stakes. While it was very nice to see a strong, loyal female friendship, that was about the only part of this book I enjoyed. In some respects, it reminded me of Jane Austen (mostly the time period and the conflicts faced by the characters), but I enjoy Jane Austen novels far more than I enjoyed this title. One advantage to this book, however, is that it's appropriate for both middle a I wasn't a huge fan of this book, mostly because I found the plot to be very mundane without a lot of action or stakes. While it was very nice to see a strong, loyal female friendship, that was about the only part of this book I enjoyed. In some respects, it reminded me of Jane Austen (mostly the time period and the conflicts faced by the characters), but I enjoy Jane Austen novels far more than I enjoyed this title. One advantage to this book, however, is that it's appropriate for both middle and high school readers, as it is extremely tame compared to most YA fiction. This review will be shorter than my usual reviews, as I don't particularly have a lot to talk about with this title. My Name is Victoria follows (as the story might imply) the story of a young girl named Victoria "Miss V" Conroy. Miss V's father is the financial advisor to young Princess Victoria's mother the duchess, putting him in a position of great power and prestige amongst the royal family. Hoping that Miss V's presence will keep the young princess in line, Sir John Conroy sends his daughter to Kensington Palace to become Princess Victoria's personal companion, forcing her to give up both her home and her beloved dog Dash. Princess Victoria lives under a strict set of rules known only as the "Kensington System," forcing her to remain hidden from the rest of the world. Though the two young girls dislike one another at first, they quickly become close enough to be sisters, causing Miss V to feel torn between her duty to her father and her newly found friendship with Princess Victoria. And... That's basically it for the plot. The book follows Miss V and Princess Victoria through their mundane daily lives as they grow up, detailing events such as their tutoring, playing in the garden, and holding costume parties as the princess ages. While I'm sure this might be thrilling to some, I found myself thoroughly bored by most of the plot. Don't get me wrong; I think the premise behind the novel is extremely intriguing. In Lucy Worsley's author note, she explains that she wanted to explore Queen Victoria's unique childhood, referencing a diary that the young princess kept while living under the "System." Though Victoria mentions Sir John Conroy's daughter (whom she was forced to play with), she seems to have hated both him and "Miss V," considering them to be enemies. Worsley, knowing that Victoria was prone to melodrama, turns this idea on its head, imagining what it might have been like if the two were close friends rather than enemies. In theory, this is a fascinating re-imagining of history. In practice, however, I found it hard to invest in the characters and what they were going through. I will say, however, that I did enjoy seeing a strong female friendship in YA literature, as it's rare to see two girls/women who aren't being pitted against one another as rivals. As I've said before in my YA reviews, I think it's important to show young girls that other girls can be more than just competition; it's possible to form strong, sister-like bonds with those they might initially dislike. As I said before, I also thought the premise of this book was really interesting, playing with history and re-imagining what Queen Victoria's childhood might really have been like. It's clear to me that Worsley, being a curator for the royal palaces, has done her research with this title to make it as true to the time period as possible. That being said, I don't know enough about Queen Victoria to attest to the accuracy of the characters and circumstances being portrayed. Though it's very clearly a Victorian England romance, I also thought the relationship between Miss V and Albert was sweet. I must say that I did not see the twist ending coming, as I had no idea that Queen Victoria was married to Prince Albert (my knowledge of the English royal family is extremely lacking). I also found myself enjoying the idea that Victoria switched places with her lady in waiting, feeling herself wholly unfit to rule a country. Without knowing it, the reader is actually reading from the perspective of the person who would become Queen Victoria, rather than the Queen's friend and playmate. This was a unique twist, and I appreciated it despite my struggle to get through the rest of the story. My last real complaint is that the ending felt very rushed. I would have preferred to see more development between Albert and Miss V, and more focus on the period in which Miss V and Victoria switch places so that Miss V might take the throne. These two events, in my opinion, were the most interesting parts of the book, and yet they were relegated to the last fourth of the book. Most of the first three quarters focus on Miss V's life at Kensington Palace, and much of this was monotonous and uninteresting. Though there are snippets of interesting moments (Miss V finding out about her father's affair, Spath being dismissed for disagreeing with Sir John Conroy), most of it was difficult for me to get through. While this book wasn't my personal cup of tea (see what I did there?), I could easily see someone who is interested in the history of the English royal family truly enjoying this title. It reads very much like Jane Austen, but is much easier to follow than a Jane Austen novel. It features a strong female friendship, as well as a cute (if a little bland) historical romance. Though I tend to enjoy historical fiction, this particular time period didn't interest me as much as historical fiction about the Romanovs or World War II usually do. As I said before, however, someone interested in Queen Victoria would likely really enjoy this re-imagining of her childhood history. Even better, this is a title that could be easily promoted to a middle school audience, as it is extremely tame, with no curse words or sexual content. I would describe this as "Jane Austen for a middle school audience," and I definitely think it could easily garner a readership among lovers of historical fiction. I applaud Worsley for turning her passion for English history into a novel, and look forward to seeing whether or not she will continue to write in the future.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nadia King

    Lucy Worsley, Chief Curator of Historic Royal Palaces treats readers to a peek into a version of Queen Victoria’s teen years in her historical YA novel, My Name Is Victoria. Much of Queen Victoria’s childhood was spent in relative isolation at Kensington Palace. Her mother, the dowager Duchess of Kent along with her advisor and Comptroller, Sir John Conroy devised the Kensington System. It was a means of keeping Victoria under their control and secluded from society. They hoped to eve Lucy Worsley, Chief Curator of Historic Royal Palaces treats readers to a peek into a version of Queen Victoria’s teen years in her historical YA novel, My Name Is Victoria. Much of Queen Victoria’s childhood was spent in relative isolation at Kensington Palace. Her mother, the dowager Duchess of Kent along with her advisor and Comptroller, Sir John Conroy devised the Kensington System. It was a means of keeping Victoria under their control and secluded from society. They hoped to eventually rule as Regent. Luckily, Victoria became queen after her eighteenth birthday. Worsley takes a spin on history and imagines Victoria’s life with Sir John’s daughter as a companion. This was indeed the case but what if they had become dear friends? What mischief and plans would they have dreamt up? My Name Is Victoria is an easy to read novel particularly suited to younger YA readers. It is sure to please and delight readers of historical fiction. Overall, an extremely satisfying read.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Davison

    I would like to thank netgalley and Bloomsbury for a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. I loved, loved, loved the idea behind this novel! Worsley presents the childhood of one of England's greatest monarchs, Queen Victoria, in a new light. It looks at the cruelty of the system which she lived under, very truthfully. The first half of the novel does drag a little, but picks up massively in the second 'alternative reality' half of the novel. I'm not usually a fan of alternativ I would like to thank netgalley and Bloomsbury for a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. I loved, loved, loved the idea behind this novel! Worsley presents the childhood of one of England's greatest monarchs, Queen Victoria, in a new light. It looks at the cruelty of the system which she lived under, very truthfully. The first half of the novel does drag a little, but picks up massively in the second 'alternative reality' half of the novel. I'm not usually a fan of alternative history, but this is so well done. Highly recommended!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Pleasant "parallel universe" read. Didnt quite expect so much fantasy from Lucy, but she says it's fun and she is right. One question though: (view spoiler)[wouldn't our Victoria's be aunt and niece instead of cousins?(view spoiler)[ (hide spoiler)] (hide spoiler)]

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