The Plantagenets: The Kings who Made England

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Harper Press, 2012 - Great Britain - 632 pages

"Outstanding. Majestic in its sweep, compelling in its storytelling, this is narrative history at its best. A thrilling dynastic history of royal intrigues, violent skulduggery and brutal warfare across two centuries of British history.' SIMON SEBAG MONTEFIORE

The Plantagenets inherited a bloodied, broken kingdom from the Normans, and set about expanding royal rule until it stretched at its largest from the Scottish lowlands to the Pyrenees, and from the Ireland to the foothills of the Holy Roman Empire. At the same time, they developed aspects of English law, government, architecture, art and folklore that survive to this day. Despite all this, and having reigned for twice as long as their eventual successors, the Tudors, the Plantagenets remain relatively unknown.

In this gripping, vivid new book, Dan Jones brings the Plantagenets and their world back to life. This is both an epic narrative history of the 'high' Middle Ages, and a spellbinding portrait of a family blessed and cursed in equal measure.

THE PLANTAGANETS sweeps from Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine's creation of a European empire to Richard the Lionheart's heroic Third Crusade and King John's humbling under Magna Carta. It explores the beginning of parliament under Henry III. It charts the fierce rule of Edward Longshanks, who conquered Wales and subdued Scotland but could never come to terms with his own son, the ill-fated Edward II. The book comes to an exciting climax in the age of chivalry, as Edward III saw England triumph in the Hundred Years War while plague stalked Europe, before the Black Prince and his beautiful princess Joan of Kent raised a son, Richard II, who would come to destroy the Plantagenet legacy. It is a compelling, fascinating journey through Britain's most spectacular age.

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User Review  - jonfaith - LibraryThing

"Fair cousin, since it pleases you, it pleases us well," said Richard. Then he formally surrendered himself to his cousin. He and Salisbury were given two very poor horses to ride, and they set out ... Read full review

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User Review  - Beamis12 - LibraryThing

A drunken outing, a ship sinks and a future kiing is dead leaving the country without a clear successor. The result? Twenty years of Civil War. This is how this well written well researched book ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Dan Jones took a first in History from Pembroke College, Cambridge in 2002. He is an award-winning journalist and a pioneer of the resurgence of interest in medieval history. His first book on the Peasants' Revolt received widespread critical acclaim. This is his second book. He lives in London.

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