19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Authoritative, accessible and well written, 15 Oct 2010
This is an excellent book. I really enjoyed reading it. At 800 pages it is a big read. Pryor's reputation is as a prehistorian and plainly the early chapters are first class as expected, but I did initially fear that as we progressed to the "Dark Ages" and beyond, I would sense a fall-off of confidence and expertise....but not so. If he has had to (occasionally) "lean heavily" on other authors he says so and offers a good bibliography. The layout of the book is good - a large number of sections within each chapter to break up and organise the text, and a source reference style that does not interrupt the flow of the text. I think Pryor's knowledge of agriculture as a Fenman sheep farmer enhances the text and gives a perspective that would be missing from an academic author sat at a desk in a university. He bursts the bubble of quite a few "known truths" and his arguments and interpretations offered are convincing.