The lasting reputation of George V is for dullness. He was a crack shot, and an outstanding stamp collector, but that's about it. The flamboyance and hedonism of his father, Edward VII, defined an era whose influence and magnetism is still felt today. The contrast between the two could hardly be greater.But is that really all there was to King George, a monarch who faced a series of crises thought to be the most testing faced by any twentieth-century British sovereign? As Tommy Lascelles, one of George's most senior advisors, put it: 'He was dull, beyond dispute - but my God, his reign never had a dull moment.' Jane Ridley is one of the finest royal biographers, celebrated for her research, highly entertaining style, and piercing insights. How this supposedly limited man managed to steer the crown through so many perils and adapt a Victorian institution to the modern world is a great story in itself.