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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1492 and all that . . ., 10 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Blood & Beauty (Hardcover)
I have only recently discovered how important a turning point the year 1492 was in European history. Of course, Columbus sailed the ocean blue that year, but it was also the year of the reconquista in Spain (after which Spain rewrote it's own history . . . and what did happen to the Visigoths?) and the year of the first Borgia pope (interestingly, also Spanish -- the first non-Italian pope). In this year, Katherine of Aragon was still a young women, her marriage into England still a few years in the future. (see Philippa Gregory's "The Constant Princess" for that story.)

I love Sarah Dunant's books because they enhance my understanding of European history from the point of view of the Italian peninsula . . . well researched and well told. So, if you are trying to piece together a history of "Europe", rather than histories written from the perspectives of present day national boundaries, this book is an important part of the jigsaw puzzle. (It does make me wonder why such a history is underpinned by "women's stories" -- dynastic marriage is not a sufficient explanation, but I suppose it is part of the explanation . . . it was the women who moved from place to place as they were married.)
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