Customer Reviews


87 Reviews
5 star:
 (52)
4 star:
 (20)
3 star:
 (6)
2 star:
 (3)
1 star:
 (6)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A peek into an obscure corner of history
Anna Comnena thought she would achieve immortality as Empress of Byzantium, but when her father named her younger brother, John as his heir, she was forced to change her career plans.

This fictional biography casts light on a profoundly neglected corner of our past: the history of the Eastern Roman Empire, founded by Constantine the Great in 330 AD and finally...
Published on January 7, 2008 by E. A. Lovitt

versus
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A skewed view of Byzantium for children
This story by Ms. Barrett is a good, but seriously flawed fictional account of the life of Anna Comnenus, a Byzantine princess during the medieval era. For those who like fiction with no connection to reality, (and the plethora of fantasy titles, sci-fi and other `historical fiction' tampering with the past on the market today, is a pretty good indication of such!) this...
Published on March 19, 2007 by Amazon Customer


‹ Previous | 16 7 8 9 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Perils of Royalty., January 16, 2003
By 
Royalty seems like something that is perfect; but this is false in Anna Comnena's case. Ever since Anna's birth she has been proclaimed to be her father's chosen successor. Her life as a child is monotonous; she sits in the library with her teacher Simon, she has lessons on diplomacy from her grandmother, and she frolics and plays like any child with her sister Maria. However, a little while later a brother by the name of John is born. John seems like a threat to Anna and her claim to the throne. Though John looks like a threat, Anna's grandmother, Anna Dalassena keeps teaching her lessons on diplomacy so that one day Anna will be fit to rule the throne. It is only later that Anna realizes that her grandmother is a manipulative woman who will use Anna as a pawn to her liking even if Anna becomes empress. As Anna realizes this she begins to take drastic measures, and puts her fate into her own hands.
The only thing I disliked in this story was the portrayal of John. In the book, he was an obnoxious boy who only cared about himself, however later on in the book he made decisions that sounded merciful. Also, in the Author's Note, it is written that John was highly acclaimed by his people. Other than that note, the book was well written~!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Anna Of Byzantium, May 21, 2002
By 
JenifferKimP.3 (Cerritos, Ca USA) - See all my reviews
Anna the princess of the Byzantium Empire will be the succesor of her father. The birth of her micheivous baby brother threatens her right to the throne. Eventually she loses her right to the throne to her baby brother and is against Anna and her mother. Her father passes away which leaves Anna in an awkard position. By th will of the Emperor her brother, she gets sent to a cenventory and her mother is sent off to Asylum.
I greatly enjoy the book. At the end of each chapter it left meeh the reader hungry for more. The story was thrillinh, and it was very fun to read becasue it felt as if i was part of the conspiraory which was filled with many trangressions made by her grandmother and brother. The stay did not quite end the way a happy ending would, but even after i finished the book it makes meeh wonder what ever happened in the end to Anna and her family, even though it was historical fiction.
I chose this book mainly because of the briek description about the book on the back. Instantly, I felt the i had to read this book. I do not regret picking this book up, because it is my favorite, atleast for now.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow to start- but..., May 12, 2005
By 
summerfun (NIce, France) - See all my reviews
Slow to start-but by the middle you're hooked! This was my first historical novel and I don't regret it. I learned a lot about huge palaces, slavery, Byzantine general life and war with the Turks...

Anna Comnena is the daughter of the Emperor Alexius Comnenus (he won many battles and started fighting at a very early age), and Irene Ducas: we don't hear much about her. She's nice but too absent (I wished she appeared more in the story).

The Ducases and the Comnenus family are fighting for the empiril throne. That's why Alexius wants to marry Anna to Constantine Ducas: to stop the rivalry between the two families.

I was surprised to find out that Anna was supposed to get married so young, at the age of 13.

One of my favorite things was the beautiful relathionship between Anna and Sophia, her "slave". Sophia opened Anna's eyes, making her less selfish and egocentric.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Anna learns selfishness gets you nowhere, September 24, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The 11th century Anna Comnena was her father's first-born and someday expects to rule the Byzantium Empire. She was taught by her mother and grandmother to direct the court. She seems almost heartless throughout the first half of the book when she unsuccessfully tries to kill her brother and regain her possition. Anna's brother is described as a spoiled monster who refuses to read. Their mother believes that he is not her child, but a devil that creeped into his bed one night. You can see by the end of the novel that Anna had a change of heart. She sees the truth and realizes the good in life and the importance of family. From reading this book, I feel like I learned very much about living in a royal palace and what it's like to be a princess and the daughter of an Emperor. If you enjoy Roman history or want to learn about the Byzantium Empire, this is one of the best books you could read!

-Elizabeth
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best!!!, December 27, 2002
This review is from: Anna of Byzantium (Hardcover)
I've been reading various historical fiction since I could read, and it doesn't get much better than this. With a realistic, captivating heroine, a breathtaking setting, and a truly gripping plot, I can honestly say that this is one of the best books I've ever had the pleasure of reading, in any genre.

Princess Anna has always had everything. As the firstborn and heir to the throne, with a loving mother and younger sister, doting father, and servants running to suit her every need, her future as empress is ashured, and it is a bright future indeed. But, with the birth of a son into the family, could Anna's place in history be threatened?
Like I said before, this was an excellent book, good for anyone over the age of ten or eleven.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Book That Lacks Quality, January 11, 2002
A Kid's Review
The book, Ana of Byzantium, by Tracy Barrett, is a story that takes place in the third century AD. This book contains what one might expect to find in a less-then-average book. Ana, the eldest daughter and a princess, is heir to the throne of the Byzantine Empire. Ana gets tutored on how to be an empress. Ana's grandmother, the mother of her father, who loathes Ana, convinces the emperor to make Ana's younger brother, John, the heir. When Ana's father gets fatally sick, and John becomes emperor, Ana has to find someway to take her rightful place as empress of the Byzantine Empire.
This book is not right for an average reader, because the book has nothing going on in the beginning. At the beginning, the book looks at what it would be like to be a nun. It takes a long time to get to where the actual storyline starts taking place, and even then, the beginning is completely irrelevant to the rest of the story. This book also lacks depth, and takes large jumps in time, leaving the reader hanging. There are no long pieces of time, and once one thinks he knows something, several years pass and everything changes. Because of this, one cannot get to know the characters well without them changing ages and personalities.
Some very patient readers may find this book interesting, because it must be read very slowly to be understood well. People who like history might also enjoy this book, because it takes place before the middle ages. Most historians will be disappointed by the lack of historical accuracy. This book just isn't quality reading material. Even the most patient readers will be disappointed in the lack of quality and description. If one doesn't mind not knowing about the characters, this is a fine book to read, but otherwise, this is a book that should be avoided. Overall, this is not a book that should
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a typical teenager in an atypical position, June 10, 2007
Anna is the heir to the Byzantium throne, which is quite the tough job for a teenager. Soon, though, Anna finds herself torn between her kind-hearted mother and her harsh and powerful grandmother. She faces all the difficulties of fighting parents, annoying siblings, boyfriends, and growing up (that is, moving from the selfishness of childhood into the selflessness of adulthood, moving from the weakness of dependence on adults to the independence of adulthood), but all in the sphere of royalty and in the Byzantium Empire. This is a beautiful, complex, dramatic, emotional, and thoroughly clever historical fiction. Grade: A
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars reader from Madison, July 11, 2001
A delightful book on the life of a Byzantium princess. Anna, a strong, courageous girl, is determined to soon become a royal empress. But her hopes don't die when her little brother is born. Years later, she finds her whole hopes and dreams shattered as her brother and grandmother betray her. But Anna will not stop until she gets whats truely hers. I like how realistic it is. Some reviews say Anna is cruel, trying to kill her brother, but lets face the facts, this took place about 1,000 years ago and the world was way crueler. If you were royal and had that much power to get revenge, what would you do?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars reader from Madison, July 11, 2001
A delightful book on the life of a Byzantium princess. Anna, a strong, courageous girl, is determined to soon become a royal empress. But her hopes don't die when her little brother is born. Years later, she finds her whole hopes and dreams shattered as her brother and grandmother betray her. But Anna will not stop until she gets whats truely hers. I like how realistic it is. Some reviews say Anna is cruel, trying to kill her brother, but lets face the facts, this took place about 1,000 years ago and the world was way crueler. If you were royal and had that much power to get revenge, what would you do?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, March 20, 2002
This review is from: Anna of Byzantium (Hardcover)
This book tells the story of a princesse in Byzantium. If you like it I sugest reading 'The Dark Tower' by Sharon Stewart which tells a story about the princesse of France during one of the revalutions. The main character, Anna, is well portrayed but somtimes does things that I do not belive a person in her possition would do. Anna is however a good heroin and does not sit around complaining as often happends. It is not perdictable and interesting. I wish Mrs. Barett would exspand on the cultor of the people of Byzantium. Still I think it was a good book and I thuraly enjoyed it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 16 7 8 9 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Anna of Byzantium
Anna of Byzantium by Tracy Barrett (Hardcover - October 1, 2000)
$16.60 $14.94
In stock but may require an extra 1-2 days to process.
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.