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Diana: A Tribute to the People’s Princess (Whitecap $17.95)
Whereas John Lennon got into trouble for saying the Beatles were more popular than Jesus, few would debate the Honourable Diana Frances Spencer, in death, became a more popular icon than the Virgin Mary.
"Diana was the very essence of compassion, of duty, of style, of beauty," said her brother, Earl Spencer. "All over the world she was a symbol of selfless humanity."
That Diana might have been a few other things, as well, is not the concern of Peter Donnelly's Diana: A Tribute to the People's Princess (Whitecap $17.95), an affordably priced, hardcover homage to the world's most photographed female.
Complete with pictures of the funeral procession and laudatory epitaphs, it stresses the innocense of the beautiful but fragile Diana in contrast to the frumpiness of the Queen and stiffness of Charles.
Published in a first run edition of 750,000 copies by four factories, this instant memorial contains more than 215 photographs, some of which were taken by the much-reviled papparazzi.
The Canadian edition is preserve of Whitecap's Michael Burch who made B.C. publishing history twice before -- with his bestselling coffee table book on Vancouver's Expo, The Expo Celebration, and with his equally bold, but less successful book on the Petrocan cross-Canada's Olympic Torch relay.
It's unprecedented for a B.C. publisher to be partnered in an international co-production of this magnitude. No word yet if Mother Teresa will get equal treatment.