Richard III: The Maligned King Paperback – 20 Jul 2009
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About the Author
After studying at the Royal College of Music, Annette Carson worked for several years in the entertainment industry while indulging a leisure interest in aerobatics, on which she is a renowned expert and has contributed to Encyclopaedia Britannica. In a professional writing career of 30 years she has been an editor and an award-winning copywriter. Her last book before retirement was a biography of guitarist Jeff Beck. From 1990 to 2010 she worked in South Africa where she became involved with the Karoo Animal Protection Society, to which she still devotes energy since returning to the UK. She was the lead campaigner in a case against the selective freezing of pensions for British expatriates which reached the ECHR. The Richard III controversy first came to her attention at the time of Olivier siconic film portrayal, and remains a topic of research on which she writes extensively. In 2011 she was invited by Philippa Langley to join the team searching for the king s lost grave which found and exhumed Richard s remains for honourable reburial."
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Top Customer Reviews
Taking each of the so-called 'crimes' he has been accused of individually, she goes back to before the fog invented by the Tudors to justify their usurpation of a crown they had little claim to, and looks at contemporary accounts of events. She then adds something missing from books written about this period by nearly all other writers, common sense and humanity. Each event is looked at from all sides, pro Richard and anti viewpoints are weighed in the balance, and documents scrupulously investigated, studied, and their validity judged. Then the questions of 'Was this scenario possible?' and 'If not, why not?' are asked.
The result is a simply stunning piece of historical writing, that I cannot recommend highly enough. In this wonderful book Annette Carson shows that occasionally history written by the winners, in this case the Tudors, can be proved to be chiefly fiction.
My one gripe is with the paperback version of this book. The font is tiny and I find it really quite difficult to read. Make sure you have a decent pair of glasses if you buy this version.
The author deals with the events of Richard's reign using just contemporary chronicles, and her unusual hypothesis that Edward IV might have poisoned definitely made me look at this event in a different light.
It seems that political propaganda was as much alive in fifteenth century England as it is today - and she illustrated so many instances where post-Richard chroniclers deliberately mis-translated the original information so as to provide a completely opposite view. I have always thought that the portrait of Richard painted by More and Shakespeare is so obviously over the top, it is obviously only intended to be a drama, and not actual fact.
I also find it interesting that Richard has been vilified - without any actual proof - regarding the supposed death of Edward IV's sons, and yet the systematic removal of any Yorkist heirs by Henry VII and his son Henry VIII hardly seems to rate a mention in subsequent books written about this period.
The book really puts Richard into the context of the times in which he lived, and is careful not make a judgement on any of the facts, but merely to set them out for the reader to make their up their own mind. I certainly learned some new information about Richard, which was most interesting. It is clear that Richard's only Parliament certainly brought in some excellent laws to improve the lot of his people, which are still around today - something which probably did not go down too well with his nobles.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Why oh why do the publishers of academic books make the print so small that it makes the text almost impossible to read? Read morePublished 5 months ago by Rupertthecat
Another minutely researched and clearly and beautifully written by Annette Carson - she is such a perfectionist and really finds the darkest corners for research. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Sylvia Charlewood
Very good, very concise and easy to read. Could not put it down.Published 12 months ago by Jeanne Lees
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