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Henry VIII: Court, Church and Conflict Hardcover – March 31, 2007
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About the Author
David Loades is a well-known and popular writer on Tudor history. His many works include biographies of leading Tudor personalities and a best-selling textbook, Politics and the Nation 1450-1660. For the National Archives he has written Mary Tudor: The Tragical History of the First Queen of England (2006) and Elizabeth I: The Golden Reign of Gloriana. His other interests include naval history (he is closely engaged with research on the Mary Rose, and has appeared in TV documentaries on the subject).
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Top Customer Reviews
Although the text is 349 pages, thirty (127-157) are taken up with black and white pictures, so that although the book is physically huge, it isn't really all that long. I got through it in two days, and was left feeling ... well, not quite that I'd wasted my money, but that I should probably have waited for the paperback, or for the library to get it. I didn't feel I had gained any new insights into a man who, as G. J. Meyer recently put it in The Tudors, is the most famous king in history.
The book is also inadequately edited. There was hardly a page in which I wasn't driven to pick up a pencil and add in a missing comma. The main problem was non-essential information not fully enclosed within commas, eg, "Henry had by this time about fifty warships of varying sizes, including several Great Ships, like the Henry Grace a Dieu and the Mary Rose which had recently been rebuilt and re-equipped with the latest guns" (p. 309). There should be a comma after "Mary Rose", since "like the Henry Grace a Dieu and the Mary Rose" is non-essential information.Read more ›
The book starts with discussing Henry VIII's family and background, his father's claim to the throne and victory at the battle of Bosworth, Henry's education and interesting details about his early life. The young Henry's character is extensively covered as well so we learn about his love for all kinds of sports, his intellectual pursuits and his passion for the tradition of courtly love. There are several chapters covering the wars during Henry VIII's reign so if you are looking for a political/military biography this most likely will be your cup of tea. If, from the other hand, you would like to learn more about Henry VIII as a person, you will find interesting chapters as well. Loades details Henry's relationship with his subsequent wives and discusses their impact on his character and politics.
David Loades has done a great job at bringing history to life in this detailed portrayal of Henry VIII's life and those that surrounded him during his reign. Mr. Loades provides the reader with a detailed examination of Henry VIII's life and the court organization through which he exercised power. The huge amount of primary and secondary sources is listed at the end of the book, so if you enjoy checking the sources for yourself, this book doesn't disappoint. There are a number of interesting illustrations as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had enjoyed reading about Henry VIII. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested reading about
Henry VIII. Four stars!