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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping
This book presents a vivid and enthralling description of the conquest of South and Central America, focusing on four of the key stories. Wood's writing is always clear and his lyrical descriptions really bring the scene alive. The book is lavishly illustrated and the text is frequently interspersed with quotations from the memoirs of the conquistadors and, more...
Published on 1 July 2003 by rd99

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A historical travelogue that doesn't quite come off
This book was published to accompany the BBC television series of the same name, broadcast in 2000. In it, the ever-engaging Michael Wood attempted to retrace the astonishing journeys of four 16th century Spanish adventurers - Cortes, Pizarro, Orellana and Cabeza de Vaca - whilst simultaneously telling their stories.

There are two ways of turning a TV series...
Published on 15 Jun. 2012 by Molerat


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5.0 out of 5 stars i enjoy the works of michael woods and this history of ..., 27 Jun. 2014
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M. Moffitt - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Conquistadors (Hardcover)
i enjoy the works of michael woods and this history of horror and conquest was a great read; book arrived in excellent condition
Recommend this seller.
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5.0 out of 5 stars absorbing and stimulating, 1 Jan. 2012
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markr - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Conquistadors (Paperback)
This an excellent introduction to the Spanish conquest of Latin America, which resulted in the almost total destruction of the indigenous civilisations of Incas and Aztecs and the introduction of a European based culture, initially motivated by an apparently unquenchable desire for gold.

The author creates a fast pace, using contemporary sources from both Spanish conquistadors and from local perspectives to give a full account of the main events. Sometimes shocking in the barbarity of events, sometimes uplifting in the tales of great bravery on both sides, this account races along and leaves you wanting to learn more.

So a great introduction to further reading or a highly enjoyable and informative account in its own right.

either way - highly recommended
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars we come in peace...shoot to kill, 5 Dec. 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Conquistadors (Hardcover)
'We come in peace...shoot to kill' appears to be the message throughout most of this book. Michael Wood's book contains stories to make a Star Trek scriptwriter extremely jealous and he tells the stories with tremendous enthusiasm passionately retracing the footsteps of first, Hernan Cortes, then the Pizarro brothers, Orellana and Cabeza de Vaca. The book is well written and researched and all of the accounts are complimented by magnificent photographs and numerous period illustrations. Anyone who has watched the recent t.v. series cannot fail to be impressed and the book only adds further detail and makes exciting reading. Unputdownable, a must read for anyone with a fair sense of history.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The other, 1 Feb. 2011
This review is from: Conquistadors (Hardcover)
A tragic tale of the destruction of the ancient kingdoms of Aztecs and Incas. A masterful narrative of greed,lust and uncivilised behaviour of the Spanish Conquistadors. The author Wood has presented a historical narrative that questions the imposition of western morality and ethics to a society that was far more advanced at that period of time. Interestingly the case of Vasca de Casa illustrates the peaceful, kind and warm welcome offfered by these ancient kingdoms to the brutal conquistadors.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping read skillfully told by Michael Wood as he ..., 16 July 2014
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This review is from: Conquistadors (Paperback)
A gripping read skillfully told by Michael Wood as he follows in the footsteps (literally) of the Conquistadors. An exciting, turbulent and ultimately tragic period of history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 31 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Conquistadors (Hardcover)
Amazing!
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3 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars mostly excellent, 24 Sept. 2009
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This review is from: Conquistadors (Hardcover)
When wood is dicussing the conquest of the Aztec or Inca empires by a handful of ruthless psychopaths then this book is a riveting read. I think he lets himself down a bit though in the last chapter about the explorer Cabo de Vaca. Wood gets all whimsical and paints him like some kind of semi divine Jesus figure! OK, so he might have been nicer than your average conquistador but I mean!! And all this stuff about 'the other'? Spare us your cod philophising Michael.

Also, I found the 'we're going to follow their trail' bits a bit superflous. Easy to do when you can be helicoptered out when things get a bit sticky, but don't add to the story. (It's nice camping out under the stars, apparently you can feel the past!).

Like most of Woods books he is excellent when telling a story but spoils things when he let's himself intrude. On the whole though I'd say it is worth a read.
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Conquistadors by Michael Wood (Hardcover - 23 Nov. 2000)
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