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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Richard III's Beloved Cousyn, 7 Nov 2011
By 
Mrs. M. Cheatham "dinki" (Solihull UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
Richard III's 'beloved Cousyn': John Howard and the House of York

A great book for those with an interest in the War of the Roses/Tudor England, John Howard's life, career and companionship of Richard III is well documented in this throughly researched book. Very good read and would recommend highly
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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Detailed insight into a key figure of the Wars of the Roses, 4 Feb 2010
This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
I am fast becoming a big fan of Dr.Ashdown-Hill's work. Meticuously researched as ever, this book once again brings a key, yet much ignored, figure of the Wars of the Roses to life. Much of this book on John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk is taken from Dr. Ashdown-Hill's thesis for his PhD and as a result is written in this style. The signposting and returning to interesting areas at later stages may irritate some but it certainly helps to define each chapter as we go through Howard's life. Dr. Ashdown-Hill's meticulous research has once again dispelled many myths about Howard, as with Eleanor Talbot, and also introduced what seems incontrovertible proof that Carvel ships were first built by the Yorkists, and not the Tudors. I did enjoy that! It is also fascinatingly detailed on medieval religious life. If you are looking for a work that makes giant, imaginative leaps based on only the smallest pieces of evidence then this book is not for you as Dr. Ashdown-Hill strives with his meticulous style (it's that word again!) to make only those judgements that can be supported by it. I would most definitely recommend this for any readers interested in the medieval, late medieval and Tudor periods, naval history, as well as Catholic liturgy.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and well written, 18 May 2013
By 
SusanS "SusanS" (Wakefield, West Yorks) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
I became interested in John Howard when reading about Richard III,I don't really know why, but he just struck me as an interesting character.
I initially thought Howard was just some random chap who Richard III bribed onto his side by letting him have the disputed Mowbray lands, but he was a long standing and faithful servant of the Plantagenet family.

I enjoyed the insights into his life, his involvement with the navy, his career as a faithful servant of Edward IV and to Cecily. Also, the more personal aspects were interesting. I had read elsewhere Howard was a violent man, but he does not emerge from this book in that way. He had a bit of an incident with the Pastons, but that was it.

He is portrayed as a lover of music and interested in modern developments such as the mechanised clock.
Little things, such as his ordering a quarter of a porpoise (can't say I'd fancy that much- fishy blubber anyone??), his shoes, medicines,trips to the inn, etc bring him to life.
His religous life is also presented, showing a deep and seemingly genuine piety.

The book does, as the title suggests, deal with his involvement with Richard III. I found Howard's reaction to Richard interesting and quite perplexing.
He obviously knew the family well; he was involved with Cecily, Edward and Richard over many years. There seemed to be more to his involvement in the whole Richard/usurpation situation than just getting his hands on the Mowbray inheritance, maybe I'm being too generous to Howard here and he was just looking after no.1, but it does seem as if he genuinely did support the idea of Richard taking the throne.
Why, though, is unclear. The precontract theory is raised, though I'm personally a bit sceptical with this (bit too convenient for my liking).
I also find it interesting that he did not distance himself from Richard in light of the princes in the tower debacle, staying loyal to the king till the end; maybe he did'nt believe Richard was responsible, or maybe he just did'nt really care?

I found the exploration of Howard's supposed tomb interesting and quite poignant, although inconclusive.
For me, the book raised more questions than it answered, but it was a well written book and I enjoyed reading it.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Noblemen in Ricardian England, 7 Feb 2011
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This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
Mr Ashdown-Hill has written a deeply researched and most interesting book, which makes clear who King Richard III trusted , and why.Always a figure that excites interest, this lonely king still arouses discussion, not to say dissent, it is interesting to learn more about his followers.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read on a little known character!, 16 May 2013
This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
When I first ordered this I thought it was about Richard's other cousin, Harry Duke of Buckingham, as I misread the second title. Of course all history fans will know about the 2nd and 3rd Dukes' of Norfolk during the Tudor times, but this Howard has always been a bit more of a mystery. Book is very well written and full of incredible information, the like of which I have never heard before such as his involvement with Edward IV's navy and the fact he could have been in on the secret of the king's secret first marriage! A very informative and interesting book for all people interested in this period. I now look forward to reading the author's book about Eleanor Talbot.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beloved Cousyn, 12 April 2013
I have so far found no other study devoted to the career of John Howard & enjoyed filling a gap in my knowledge. There are some cheerful elements in the book which I was quite taken with although there is slight factual evidence for some of the speculation & I enjoyed reading it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good research and very interesting perspective, 28 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
I liked this book as it gave a perspective on life at the time, that is rarely available. I'm very glad that I found it as it has produced a good source of information that is not readily available when researching Richard III and the wars of the roses, by introducing people that were more obscure.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rewarding, 31 Jan 2013
By 
S Ling (Cornwall England) - See all my reviews
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This is a rewarding read. Researched well and an interesting addition to books I have on the Plantagenets and their supporters .
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing work, 12 Mar 2013
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He brings out the character not only of John Howard but of Richard 111 too and everyday life in England
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's amazing what can still be found!, 15 April 2013
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This review is from: Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' (Hardcover)
It was very well researched for a character, not centre stage, who played an important part in Richard's reign. It's amazing what can still be found from 500 years ago!
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Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn'
Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn' by John Ashdown-Hill (Hardcover - 5 Oct 2009)
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