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Lancaster And York: The Wars of the Roses [Kindle Edition]

Alison Weir
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
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Book Description

The war between the houses of Lancaster and York for the throne of England was characterised by treachery, deceit and - at St Albans, Blore Hill and Towton, - some of the bloodiest and most dramatic battles on England's soil. Between 1455 and 1487 the royal coffers were bankrupted and the conflict resulted in the downfall of the houses of Lancaster and York and the emergence of the illustrious Tudor dynasty.

Alison Weir's lucid and gripping account focuses on the human side of history, on the people and personalities involved in the conflict. At the centre of the book stands Henry VI, the pious king whose mental instability led to political chaos, Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York and Henry's rival, and most important of all, Margaret of Anjou, Henry's wife who took up her arms in her husband's cause and battled for many years in a violent man's world.

Product Description


"Weir provides immense satisfaction. She writes in a pacy, vivid style, engaging the heart as well as the mind." (Independent)

"A joy to read." (Economist)

Book Description

A riveting account of the Wars of the Roses, focusing on the human side of the story.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2561 KB
  • Print Length: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital (18 April 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #76,502 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful Storytelling 10 Jun. 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase

I began this book with some trepidation having struggled a little with Alison Weir's Katherine Swynford: The Story of John of Gaunt and His Scandalous Duchess. The problem I had with that story was not in its telling but in the lack of firm factual information to base it on. Her story of Lancaster and York has no such shortfall.

This is a brilliantly researched and highly readable account of a very complex saga. I have read many other books about and touching on the War of the Roses, but I don't think any of them surpassed this telling of the tale, and I can think of only one has equalled it - namely Paul Kendall's Richard III.

Having just read Juliet Barker's Agincourt: The King, the Campaign, the Battle, I was struck by one or two inconsistencies in minor detail between the two books - for instance, Barker's statement that English knights always dismounted and fought battles beside their infantrymen, whereas Alison Weir states the opposite. Barker also depicts Henry V as merciful towards French civilians during his 1415 campaign of conquest, whereas Weir presents him as the complete opposite. No doubt history is full of such conundrums and divergences in interpretation.

Anyway, I have nothing but praise for Lancaster And York: The Wars of the Roses.
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96 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best on the subject 3 Jan. 2006
By Mr. D. A. Cure VINE VOICE
This is an incredibly important work, as despite there being a stack of books covering the period of the Wars of the Roses, no other gives a clear and concise background to the conflict (and such information is vital in understanding why it occurred), and there are few others that are as thorough in their approach, without descending into academic jargon.
I should point out that this deals primarily with the background from Edward III to Henry VI's reign, and then focuses upon the years 1455 to 1471, in other words, finishing with Henry VI's capture and murder after Tewkesbury. It is true that the conflict was to continue until Bosworth in 1485 (and technically until 1487), but I believe she has had other volumes dealing with these years.
I would thoroughly recommend this to anyone with an interest in late medieval England, and the Wars of the Roses, as it caters for most levels of knowledge, and deals with the characters behind the violence and politics. It is very well written, and as gripping as I have ever found a history text to be.
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71 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest history of the Wars of the Roses 5 Nov. 2009
Alison Weir is a great historian and in Lancaster and York: The Wars of the Roses she has left us the greatest history there is of this civil war which spanned thirty gurling years and torn two royal houses apart.

Weir begins at the source of the many claiments to the English Crown: Edward III abd his many adult sons. This was not a problem at first, she states, but in 1399, when Henry Bolingbroke, son of Edward III's third eldest son John of Gaunt, deposed Richard II and claimed the throne as Henry IV, it now showed that a bloodclaim and force were all that were needed to seize the throne, and as Weir explains, these would envoke dire conquences in the next century.

Weir succeded in mapping out a great history of a really important war that stood England on its head for a while. The Lancastrians-Henry VI, Margret of Anjou, Edward, Prince of Wales as well as the dukes of Somerset and Suffolk-as well as the Yorkists-Richard, duke of York, Edward IV, Elizabeth Woodville, and Richard III are all well placed to make their empacts on English history.

Weir succeeded brillantly. She read all the records and she made this period of English history come alive. This book was also very readable. A very well written book, and a good history
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Plugging a black hole of a gap in my knowledge 26 Mar. 2010
By Deborah
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this very much. I found it much easier to read than Weir's book on Isabella of France, and it filled what turned out to be huge gaps in my knowledge - I always thought I had a pretty good grasp on the history of the Plantagenets, but the reign (or reigns) of Henry VI was something about which I turned out to know nothing at all, apart from the fact that he became king while still a baby. It was fascinating to read and Weir presents this confusing chain of events with its huge cast of characters in a way that I found interesting and even absorbing in places. But I am going to have to read some more on the subject to find out whether Margaret of Anjou was a bad as Weir makes her out to be. By the time I finished reading Isabella of France, I could not believe that Isabella was as misunderstood and maligned as Weir made her out to be. As a result, by the time I finished reading the Wars of the Roses, I was not sure whether to trust the presentation of Margaret of Anjou as so very much to blame as she appears in this book. It may be that she was, but I don't feel that I can accept only Weir's word for it, which is a great shame. But then I suppose readers of history should never rely on only one source for their interpretation of events and characters. It was still a 4-star book for me, and I shall definitely keep it for reference and re-reading.

One point about presentation - the family trees were a necessity for me and I referred to them frequently to double-check who was who. I understand that from a stylistic point of view it might've been thought attractive to present them as though hand-written, but I found the font very hard to read, particularly some of the dates.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very good indeed covering a very complicated subject.Very well written
Published 2 days ago by terence henshall
2.0 out of 5 stars Huge volumes of detail, which left me feeling drowned
Given how well-reviewed the book is, I was expecting something brilliant, but for me this book just didn't work. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mark Pack
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent hisory - very much about the main player themselves.
A fascinating history and very well written, but the history itself is based on complex genealogical relationships which demand a lot of concentration and tracking back to previous... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
excellent design and well written..easy to follow and historic in fact
Published 2 months ago by steven hayward
4.0 out of 5 stars War of the Roses
War of the Roses was a good read and was very informative. It was very concise and at 420 odd pages gave the reader plenty of in depth information regards the main protagonists of... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Martin Stroud
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book from Alison Weir
Read and read and read again. Great book from Alison Weir, as are her others.
Published 2 months ago by Chucklepants
1.0 out of 5 stars ... are hundreds of books out there that I may enjoy so why waste time...
I bought this on audible and listened to about a third of it before I thought to myself that there are hundreds of books out there that I may enjoy so why waste time feeling as if... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Wee Mo
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read.
Published 2 months ago by A. Smith
3.0 out of 5 stars I found this quite difficult to read, too many ...
I found this quite difficult to read, too many names in a short amount of pages made keeping up with whose who quite difficult for me, which is a shame as I usually lover her... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Miss C
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent. The author makes it so easy to absorb history.
Great writer. Well researched and written. Such an easy read. History was never this good at school. Highly recommended.
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
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