Royal babies. Adorable, right? Who among us wasn't charmed this week by the images from London of mother and princely new son? Ah, but these young British heirs, they grow up quickly and--if history provides a faithful guide--rather strangely.
Half a century ago, the writer Kingsley Martin, a subject of the Queen himself, offered Atlantic readers delightful insight into the rearing of royals in a piece titled "The Cost of the Crown." These were different times, of course, but Martin's essay from 1962, which we present in the new issue of The Atlantic Weekly, makes the case that many aspects of monarchy endure through generations (kind of the point of hereditary nobility, no?). His conclusion: the tough task of raising a little royal--"and harnessing his perhaps wayward fancies"--is rarely pulled off with success.
On the topic of good odds for succeeding, we're pleased this week to share some advice from Stephen King on how to start a story. We also present a captivating piece of reporting by Paul Offit, who details a decades-long campaign to convince Americans of the value of vitamins--though new science now shows that they may harm more than they help. In a pair of pieces about developments in (or near) space, we take a look at how light pollution is leading to the sad vanishing of stars from the night sky, and our own Megan Garber reports on a near-disaster outside the International Space Station. Also in this week's Atlantic Weekly, we feature the religion writer Jonathan Merritt on how liberal Christians could soon muster enough clout to rival their conservative brethren, and we take a look inside the strange and inconsistent process that determines how movies get rated. We've got all that and a bit more, ready for download in our latest issue.