Foundation (2012)
Foundation (2012)
3.92 of 5 Votes: 5
125000361X (ISBN13: 9781250003614)
Thomas Dunne Books
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I got this book as an e-book on wicked sale when I was on a business trip and needed something to read. It is LONG, but I decided to forge ahead since I love the history of England, and no matter how many versions of it I read or watch (even Simon Schama's 10-part epic monstrosity of an awesome documentary) I can never seem to remember what the heck happened in most cases.I guess that's what happens when you have so much history to work with and so many great and juicy stories to tell along with it. I enjoyed this book because the author included chapters about daily life in England throughout his stories of royal intrigue and betrayal. Richard II gets killed in jail, followed by a chapter on the booming wool trade. And so on. It was interesting.The author's style is kind of unusual, but I couldn't put my finger on why. It felt like someone was just telling me the (long) story in a rather nonchalant way with no frills or build-up. I found it easy to read, but, like most epic histories, dry. I enjoyed it though.This book takes you through Henry VII's death and right up to the notorious Henry VIII before it stops and makes you buy a new book. I haven't decided if I will yet, but the Tudors aren't the most famous crowned family in the English royal line for nothing. I want to see what he says! I'll probably cave in and read it. For what it is -- a crash course on the early history of England -- it's a remarkable book. Ackroyd gives a comprehensive view of England's history from prehistoric settlements to the reign of Henry VII, weaving chapters on the culture and lifestyle of England's inhabitants throughout. But, as is probably inevitable with a book of such ambitions, a crash course is all you can expect to get. Ackroyd devotes approximately one chapter for the reign of each monarch, and some important moments in English history seemed glossed over. For example, Richard III's reign, and his eventual downfall at the Battle of Bosworth to Henry VII, comprises roughly 10-15 pages. It's not disappointing per se, because to expand the book much more would make it exhaustive, but chapters like the aforementioned ones seemed incredibly rushed. Still, I would highly recommend this to anyone looking, as I was, to simply get a comprehensive view of England and it's history. I plan on purchasing and reading the following two installments.
OK. Gallop through history. An enjoyable read.
Finally! Now, on to the Tudors!
Very good history.
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