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59 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable is what it is
Dan Jones makes it clear to the reader in his intro that this history of the Plantagenets is a long read, but he isn't apologetic and neither should he be because this is a thrilling, informative, enthralling experience. If we have preferences in reading then I would say I am a reader of literary fiction and poetry who likes to read narrative history as a change. I have...
Published on 29 July 2012 by M. Jefferies

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56 of 60 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good narrative history
The aim of this book is to tell the story of the eight Plantagenet monarchs that ruled England between 1154 and 1399. Each monarch in turn has his story told; which wars he fought in, the land he gained and lost, who he married and who were his children.

In his prologue, Jones tells us his intention with The Plantagenets is to tell the story in an entertaining...
Published 23 months ago by Sarah


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truth genuinely stranger than fiction, 4 April 2014
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EleanorB - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plantagenets (Paperback)
This author is so completely in tune with his subject matter: I envy him. The Plantagenets' long domination of the English crown, the vastness of their Empire at its peak, their vibrancy, energy, constant travel, thirst for conquest and lethal family feuds are truly the stuff of fantasy and yet all true! Their toxic relationships with the French crown created havoc. Richard the Lionheart is quoted as saying of his family "From the devil we came, and to the devil we will go." He was part of a clan that ruled entire swathes of Europe, with the whole Plantagenet ethos encapsulated best in the character of Henry the Second, who came to power in the aftermath of the ruinous civil war created by the Empress Matilda and King Stephen.

They fought each other, betrayed each other, loved each other, needed each other, killed each other over centuries and fascinate us to this day. Any one of this huge cast of characters is deserving of individual biography. Eleanor of Aquitaine, for example, is surely one of the greatest medieval matriarchs who lived the most intense of lives in her eighty plus years, outliving most of her children and still active in politics in her late seventies.

Dan Jones has produced a wonderful book, extremely well written and superbly researched. He has an enviable ability to put long past events clearly into context and brings the rough stuff of day to day experience to life.

I love this work, and can highly recommend. You may start your reading with little knowledge of this gripping family saga, but you will end up both well informed and well entertained.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As gripping as "Game of Thrones" but not a fantasy, 31 Aug 2014
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This review is from: The Plantagenets (Paperback)
Covering 250 years of English monarchy in 600 pages was always going to be a challenge. With eight reigns to cover, two civil wars and huge changes to society, Dan Jones set himself a real task but this book is a complete triumph. Beginning with the events leading to the ascension of Henry II - the wreck of the White Ship and the resulting wars of succession between Stephen and Matilda - the book charts the ups and downs of volatile ruling family.

I have actually read biographies of all the Plantagenet kings with the exception of Henry III and this work draws on a wide variety of sources including those books plus a good selection of primary sources. What sets this book apart is the quality of the writing. Jones has a really engaging style which doesn't get bogged down in quoting innumerable sources and which doesn't offer a partisan viewpoint. He beds the actions and decisions within the context of the society of the time. Kings were expected to show their power and prowess by war, yet war was expensive and that brought conflict with both the people and, over time, Parliament. The context of the wars with both France and Scotland is explained and so are the antecedents of the Cousins War. That will form the basis of Jones' next book which I am eager anticipating.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On the must list for history lovers, 3 Jan 2014
By 
Kerry M (Gold Coast, Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Plantagenets (Paperback)
I was given a copy of The Plantagenets to read and give my honest opinion. I couldn't wait to get my hands on this title as I love reading about the English Kings and Queens. I was not disappointed. The book is a factual account of the life and times of the Kings who ruled England in the years from Henry II onward. Whilst this is an historical account, Dan Jones weaves a beautiful tale of war, famine, wealth, cruelty and trickery. The English Court during this era was certainly one for machinations. In addition, Jones gives you insights into the characters strengths and weaknesses, the ever changing political power of the Lords and the Church, and unimaginable turns of fate that changed the course of history. A really good account of an era more interesting than the Tudors.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Plantagenet kings, 28 Dec 2013
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Have just completed reading this book for the second time,absolutely brilliant,the book really brings to light the rule of the kings,and how much the country changed politically and morally through each of their reigns.The country we know today
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well written, 27 Aug 2013
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I very much enjoyed reading this book, Dan has the ability to tell you the important elements in a timely and very readable way. Many of the arguments I prefer to leave to the reader, trusting his authority, i didn't feel that this was misplaced. Plenty of ground covered and I now feel educated in the drivers that influenced the Plantagenet kingdom.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good read, 19 Aug 2013
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Bought the kindle version as I didn't think I could cope with the small print of the book. Very good book, interesting and not dry the way historical books can be. It made sense of a period in history that has always been very vague. There was no way to enlarge the maps or family trees on the kindle though, which was a bit annoying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a great book!!!, 1 Aug 2013
By 
Sonia Sweeney (Shoeburyness, UK) - See all my reviews
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I love history and I live a good historical novel, Phillipa Gregory being one of my favourites. I think that knowing what really happened through a proper historical perspective is important as well, but sometimes the historical factual books tend to drag a bit too much for my taste and I find it hard to keep the attention and interest going till the end. This book dealt with this shortcoming for me. It is factual but it was written in a way that kept me hooked on it till the end. I highly recommend it for those like me that might struggle with the more academic historical books. This will get your juices going.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Plantagenet History in a Brushstroke... but a good brushstroke, 16 Oct 2012
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This review is from: The Plantagenets (Hardcover)
The Plantagenet period is one of the most interesting periods in British, indeed European history. Their domains at one point stretching from the Scottish border to the border of Spain and even the Holy Land. Full of battles, heroic feats and base treacheries the Plantegents were never boring.

Dan Jones looks at a near 300 year period from the Shipwreck which killed William, heir of Henry I up to the overthrow of Richard II. Dan Jones gives a very accesible overview of the period by focusing on the main line of the family and in brushstrokes describes what they did. For those wanting a deep view of the period, this isn't it, it would take up far too much space (see the excellent Yale English Monarch series for a detailed history of each monarch). This book though does give you a good view of what happened in the period and the changes that occured throughout the British isles and is a very good starting point for anyone interested in this period
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really excellent., 28 May 2014
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Suitably detailed and faced-paced for a text covering such a lengthy period. Reads like a novel in parts which I found refreshing in a text relating to this period.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars book, 4 May 2014
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the plantagenets was on the tv so I have enjoyed reading about the era and people, Dan Jones is a good writer nice to have a book, as I sit and knit at the same time its good
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The Plantagenets
The Plantagenets by Dan Jones (Paperback - 4 July 2013)
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