New book sheds light on life of future queen of Netherlands

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FILE - Netherlands' Princess Amalia poses in the garden of royal palace Huis ten Bosch in The Hague, Netherlands, Friday, July 17, 2020. People in the Netherlands could get to know their future queen a little better Tuesday Nov. 16, 2021, with the publication of an officially authorized book about Princess Amalia appearing weeks before her 18th birthday. (Piroschka van de Wouw, Pool via AP, File)

THE HAGUE – People in the Netherlands can get to know their future queen a little better with the publication Tuesday of an authorized book about Princess Amalia three weeks before her 18th birthday.

The book delves into Amalia's school life, her occasional work at a beach bar, her love of horseback riding and her education plans. The princess recently graduated high school and is taking a gap year before going to a university. She’s not yet sure what she will study but says she is interested in history, economics and law.

Amalia also reveals that she sometimes sees a mental health professional.

“I don’t think it is a taboo. And it’s not a problem to say that in public,” the princess is quoted as saying in the book.

“Everybody talks about healthy eating and sport. And that is also very important,” she says. “But how important is it to maintain your mental health? You can’t have one without the other.”

Claudia de Breij, a popular writer, singer and comedian, wrote the book following a series of meetings over the summer with Amalia, the oldest of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima's three daughters and first in line to the Dutch throne.

Similar books were published about her father and grandmother around their 18th birthdays as a way of introducing them to the public.

“It's very cool,” Amalia said of the book in a brief virtual conversation with De Breij released on Twitter by the Dutch Royal House.

“There are a lot of personal things about me in it,” she said. “It's quite exciting. I think the whole book paints a very beautiful portrait of who I am.”