Pippa Middleton attends the Barclays ATP World Tour finals at London's O2 Arena on Nov. 27 in the company of Tom Kingston, a 34-year-old banker who used to date a former girl linked to Prince William, Natalie Hicks-Loebbecke. (Getty Images)
There are a few things Pippa Middleton will not run short of in the foreseeable future: men, money and fame.
Looks like she has 'em all these days, just three weeks after she parted ways with her long-time (and well off) love interest, Alex Loudon.
Not to mention a spot on Barbara Walters' year-end 'Fascinating People List' for 2011. The "world's most famous sister," as Baba Wawa calls her, joins a celebrity pot pourri for her annual TV special on Dec. 14, among them Donald Trump, Simon Cowell, Katy Perry and the Kardashian family.
But enough about strange bedfellows. The common trait is they all have money, and Pippa just fell into a pile of it. To wit ...
Exhibit No. 1: A book deal that will see the Duchess of Cambridge’s younger sister pocket up to $640,000 (Canadian) from Penguin.
Granted, it’s not anywhere near the record $15 million advance paid to Bill Clinton for his memoirs, but that’s a pretty penny for Pippa’s first book. Especially for one that will be leaning less on her royal connections than on her background as a professional party planner.
“It will be about entertaining and how to throw the perfect party,” a friend told the Daily Mail. “It’s not just about being the perfect hostess – it will also include recipes and information about how to host different types of events.”
If that sounds like a bit of fluff, well, what do you expect? She is clearly not going to do a tell-all about Kate and in fact made sure she discussed the deal with St. James’s Palace before committing. But the publishers will be counting on at least some Kate banter if the book hopes to make back its extraordinary advance.
Bit of a tightrope walk for Pippa, who pushed for a deal that won’t see the book on shelves until well after the Queen winds down her Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
“Pippa has turned down the offer to be a lady-in-waiting for her sister and wants a career in her own right,” said the friend. “But she knows she can’t be seen to be making money out of her connections. Kate thinks it’s a brilliant idea.”
For one thing, writing the book will help distract her from the Loudon break-up blues. Which brings us to….
Clearly, this picture does not reflect a woman in emotional distress.
It was taken this week at the O2 Arena in London as she and a couple of male friends took in the Barclays ATP World Tour tennis final between Roger Federer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
The one 'friend' that caught everyone's eye has been identified as Tom Kingston, a 34-year-old banker (above). He is a graduate of Bristol and, according to the Daily Mail, is a former boyfriend of Natalie Hicks-Loebbecke, who used to date Prince William. Small world.
"Tom is utterly charming, polite and very popular with the ladies." a friend told the Mail. "In fact, he is just the kind of guy you would want to introduce to your mother."
Meanwhile, rumours persist that her old pal (and extremely well off) George Percy will pick up the mantle of Pippa’s beau. And of course there’s always Prince Harry (who has a few dollars in the bank too, we understand) lurking in the background and freshly back from his desert adventures in the U.S.
Whatever comfort she finds in another man, it’s clear her priority is earning her authorship wings. Says a friend: “She is throwing herself into her book and it’s helping to distract her. She’s had a horrid time."
One suspects she'll get over it.