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Bannockburn: The Battle for a Nation Hardcover – 1 May 2014

4 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Birlinn Ltd; First Edition edition (1 May 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780272189
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780272184
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 496,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

'Moffat's account of the mustering of the English army and its march north is splendid. He is a master of historical geography and deeply versed in the techniques of medieval warfare' --Scotsman

'Alistair Moffat's Bannockburn is a pacy account of the days leading up to the battle' - Saturday Herald

'Mr Moffat's account of the duel between Bruce and de Bohun is totally gripping and he is particularly enthralling about the councils of war on the eve of the second day's battle' - Country Life

'A readable and colourful account of the days leading up to what many predicted would be an easy English victory' - The Herald

'Alistair Moffat [...] brings the melee and its preamble vividly to life [...] a swashbuckling read, as frenetic as a fast-paced thriller [...] Bannockburn is as fresh as a postcard mailed from the day itself' --The Lady

'A carefully considered account of a well-trodden historical event, Moffat enlightens and educates with an up-to-date interpretation of a battle firmly cemented in Scottish history' --Scottish Field

About the Author

Alistair Moffat was born and bred in the Scottish Borders. A former Director of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Director of Programmes at Scottish Television, he now runs the Borders and Lennoxlove Book Festivals and the DNA testing company, BritainsDNA (britainsdna.com). He is also the author of numerous best-selling books.


Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I am enjoying this book very much, but if you are of a nervous disposition, I suggest you don’t read it before going to bed. The reality of war then as now is brutal. The description of being hung drawn and quartered is just horrible, as are the punishments inflicted on the poor horses. Yes I know they were bred for war, but to read how the horse’s legs were broken, as the ground beneath them collapsed. (Bruce had constructed traps with sharpened stakes and covered them with brushwood)and to imagine their screams is not pretty, but this is the 14 C and in many ways it was a different world

It is clear that Moffat has huge admiration for Robert Bruce and this comes through in the book. His view of Edward of Carnarvon is less so, especially given his homosexuality, although Moffat is of the view that ultimately it was his dithering and incompetence that drove his commanders to despair as much as his sexual preferences.

A superb account of a defining moment in the history of Scotland and of Great Britain
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
When even a huge historical event like the Battle Of Bannockburn leaves so little physical evidence and few contemporary accounts then, as a reader, we have to trust the author's interpretations, analysis and assumptions.In this case Alistair Moffat does a fine job. Well researched and written in a distinct clear style that keeps the narrative of events moving and providing enough of the background to those events to stop it becoming either too glib or too academic. This is "popular history" close to its best with just enough "it is likely that" and " it is probable " to keep it clear that this is one author's view and that it is likely that we shall never know the full story. Reading it, as I have, just as the referendum in Scotland it about to take place I am only grateful that we do things differently now.
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Format: Hardcover
An excellent entertaining and informative read. Moffatt brings the events to life, so many history books are dry as dust with endless notes on troop dispositions and the excitement sucked out of the events. As a Scot I'm ashamed to admit I knew only a few basic facts about the battle and nothing about the politics that drove the event. I suppose that's what you would expect from a 70's edition where high school history lessons really meant the distorted ENGLISH history we were fed with our own peoples history criminally ignored. Well written and well researched Moffat has the storytellers knack of keeping the reader engaged throughout. I would recommend this book
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was lucky enough to get the Kindle version on sale and it was well worth buying. I read a lot of history but don't know much about Scottish history. This is a great well written lucid account of the battle and the background to the battle. It avoids silly cultural stereotypes of either side and gives credit where credit is due to both sides. My only quibble with the Kindle version is that it would be really helpful if you could flick to the maps and back to the text. Without ready access to the maps I found it hard to visualise the geography of the wider battlefield. Otherwise I would have given it 5 stars.
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Format: Hardcover
Author Alistair Moffat has a great gift for history-telling. This book is balanced and insightful and a delight to read. With his detailed descriptions, you find yourself immersed in the battle and the stories of those involved. All those with an interest in Scottish and British history should have a copy. Highly recommended.
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