Lionheart and Lackland: King Richard, King John and the wars of conquest

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Jonathan Cape, Oct 24, 2006 - Biography & Autobiography - 578 pages
Spanning most of Europe and the Middle East, this narrative shows these larger-than-life characters as they really were - crusading, fighting vicious wars in France, negotiating with the papacy, engaging in ruthless dynastic intrigue, often against each other. Anyone who has seen 'The Lion in Winter' will remember the vicious, compelling world of the Plantagenets: the towering, almost psychopathic Henry II, commander of the slaughter of Thomas a' Becket, at war with both his wife the formidable Eleanor of Aquitaine and his sons (including the subjects of this remarkable book, Richard and John). And readers of the romance of Robin Hood will be familiar with the type-casting of Good King Richard, defending Christendom in the Holy Land, and Bad King John who usurps the kingdom in his absence. The images are mother's milk to every Hollywood producer and every British schoolchild. But how much do these popular stereotypes correspond with reality? Frank McLynn, known for a wide range of historical studies which are scholarly, punchy and wonderfully readable, has returned to the original sources to discover what the Plantagenets were really like and how their history measures up to their myth.

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User Review  - k8_not_kate - LibraryThing

Here is another fantastic history by McLynn. As usual, he makes figures that might be easily seem one-dimensional become lively and human. When I picked up this book its heft alone was daunting, but ... Read full review


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About the author (2006)

Frank McLynn‘s most recent books include Napoleon and 1066.

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