The Global Reader: Semiauthorized

For weeks this spring the British press was buzzing about the sensational biography of Tony Snowdon. Born Antony Armstrong-Jones, he became the Earl of Snowdon after his 1960 wedding to Princess Margaret, the queen’s sister. The royal household had never encountered anything like him: a chain-smoking, motorcycle-riding, sex-obsessed bohemian photographer. The marriage soon proved a battle of giant egos—he left her nasty notes, both took lovers—and ended in 1978, the first royal divorce since 1540. For Snowdon: The Biography (Weidenfeld & Nicolson), author Anne de Courcy was given access to Snowdon’s files and allowed to interview his friends, servants, and lovers past and present. It makes for a fascinating read. Available through amazon.co.uk