Marion Crawford, or "Crawfie," as she was known to young Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret, was born in the Scottish countryside and studied teaching at the Moray House Training College in Edinburgh. In the early 1930s, she became governess to the daughters of the Duke and Duchess of York, little suspecting that she would devote the next sixteen years to nurturing her future Queen. Her account of life as a royal governess originally appeared in American magazines, but soon became a front-page sensation on both sides of the Atlantic. The first edition of The Little Princesses was published in 1950, and although it created a scandal, it was nonetheless a valuable social history and the first inside account of life at Buckingham Palace. Crawford died in 1988, having never been forgiven by the royal family for writing her book.
Jennie Bond has been following the Royal Family as the BBC's Royal correspondent for thirteen years. In that time, she has covered many momentous events---among them, three marriage breakdowns, Camillagate, the Queen's annus horribilis, and the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. Bond has written two other books: Elizabeth: Fifty Glorious Years and Reporting Royalty: Behind the Scenes with the BBC's Royal Correspondent.