This book by Peter Marshall, in the excellent OUP Short Introduction series, is superb. The Reformation can be a broad, diffuse and often contentious subject and Marshall handles its various elements very clearly and fairly. He takes no particular partisan stance and this will make the book equally acceptable to Protestant and Catholic alike. He accepts that although dating the start of the Reformation is fairly easy with Luther and a few notable predecessors, deciding when it ended is more of an issue. Marshall takes us through the causes and development of the Reformation's various stages from the church-reforming 'blunt instrument' of Luther to the 'sniper-rifle' precision theology of Calvin. He explains the disagreements between Lutherans and Calvinists and how they each influenced the history of Europe in different ways, not least in the Catholic Counter-Reformation that they unleashed. He traces the impact of the reformed churches and their interactions with the state, and summarises this well at the end. Marshall also examines specific themes relating to the Reformation and its world-view on things: art, theatre, music, witchcraft and others. He makes the link between how what was produced by the Reformation interlinked with the development of the Enlightenment, a more secularly driven movement, and his series of paradoxes at the end of the book may bring a wry smile too. Not all movements achieve quite what they set out to. This is a brilliant survey of the Reformation and one of the very best of the Short Introduction series.