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Sweden: An Illustrated History (Illustrated Histories (Hippocrene)) Paperback – August 1, 2005

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Sweden: An Illustrated History (Illustrated Histories (Hippocrene)) + Of Swedish Ways + Letters From The Promised Land: Swedes in America, 1840-1914
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Product Details

  • Series: Illustrated Histories (Hippocrene)
  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Hippocrene Books (August 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0781811147
  • ISBN-13: 978-0781811149
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 5.5 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,333,697 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Martina Sprague is a military historian, martial artist, and aviation enthusiast. Her recent book, For God, Gold, and Glory: A History of Military Service and Man's Search for Power, Wealth, and Adventure is of interest to military and social historians, as well as armchair warriors dreaming of the glory that "mischance" prevented them from obtaining. It has been said that wars are fought for God (and country), gold (power and wealth), and glory (honor and heroism). Beneath these identifiers are several subcategories that explain the reasons why governments send troops to war, and why men and increasingly more women voluntarily enlist in the armed forces and fight for their country (or for somebody else's). For God, Gold, and Glory sheds light on those individuals who commit their lives to armed service for reasons related to patriotism, financial gain, adventure, and heroism.

Also of interest might be a new book series titled "A 59-Minute Perspective," each book meant to be read in just under an hour. There are many prisms through which one can view warfare in America and the rest of the world. Rather than examining specific battles or simply giving the reader a rundown of events for memorization, this series of books focuses on the underlying military, social, and political factors that shaped warfare and drove the development of military traditions at home and abroad. The books are suitable for history interested readers looking for thought provoking topics, but not having a lot of time; and for teachers preparing the class for critical thinking about historical events, and how they have come to affect current affairs.

For more information about these exciting new studies, please visit Martina's Web site: www.modernfighter.com.

Customer Reviews

2.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Erik Kalvehagen on March 31, 2006
Format: Paperback
Martina Sprague in her book Sweden: An Illustrated History, brings the story of this Nordic country to those who don't have a background in the basics of Swedish history. She opens the door quite elegantly for the outsider to the exciting battles, wars, adventures and hardships the Swedish people had to endure over numerous centuries. Starting at the very beginning Sprague (a native of Sweden herself) takes the reader on a brisk yet absorbing journey from the Ice Age, circa 10,000BC, all the way up to the assassination of Foreign Minister Anna Lindh in September of 2003. This book is a very fast paced introduction to the basics of Swedish history, where the author tries to touch on as many subjects as possible, but does not by any means go in depth. The reader learns about the Viking Age (circa 800 to 1050BC) and about the independent farmers who overthrew King Albrekt in 1389 because of high taxation in favor of the Danish Queen Margereta, who then goes on to establish the Kalmar Union (a dynastic union between Sweden, Denmark and Norway) in 1397. She then goes on to lightly discuss Sweden's struggle to throw off the Danish yoke in the 1523 Gustav Vasa Revolution, in which the nation finally became fully independent and actually had an empire of her own, with Finland, Poland, parts of Northern Prussia and Estonia under her control. Then comes the stories of the numerous northern wars fought against Denmark, and Poland. Sprague moves into the Twentieth Century (after Sweden lost her empire, with the exception of Norway 1814-1905) criticizing Sweden's decision to stay neutral in both World Wars, while at the same time staying very balanced as an historian should be.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Forhasta on October 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book seems to be written to wet the appetite of those interested in Sweden's history. After reading this, we recommend that you do, one can branch off into more specific areas of interest. This book is well-wriiten and the author has worked hard painting a fair and objective picture of Sweden. Worth reading!!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rick Lilla on May 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I am getting ready to travel to Sweden for three weeks and so thought that reading about its history would be a good way to introduce myself to it. And this book seemed perfect for my needs - a quick introduction. But the problems I had with it centered on two things. First, the author doesn't understand that it is "the Middle Ages", not "Middle Age". I kept thinking I was reading about some person in their middle age of life - not a historical period in Europe. From what I read (which extended to 27% of the book before I returned it), it appeared to either be translated poorly, or that it was written by someone whose first language is not English. Second, the book repeatedly blamed the Roman Catholic Church for the poverty of farmers, who forced them to pay a tithe of 10% of their income to the church. Nothing was mentioned of the needs of the State or Kings in exacting taxes - just those cruel Bishops who required that 10%, an amount the author maintained was high enough to throw these farmers into "becoming beggars". It is a quick read, and I was able to quickly get through the first section of the book, but perhaps due to its historical labeling and what I detected as strong bias against Catholicism, I kept questioning its accuracy. And as soon as I started checking Wikipedia for verification, I knew it was time to return it.
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