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The Three Edwards Hardcover – June 1, 1994

4.4 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews
Book 3 of 4 in the Plantagenets Series

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Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
The bestselling author of "Encyclopedia an Ordinary Life" returns with a literary experience that is unprecedented, unforgettable, and explosively human. Hardcover | Kindle book
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12 1.5-hour cassettes --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 419 pages
  • Publisher: Buccaneer Books; Reprint edition (June 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568493703
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568493701
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,565,288 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Fuchs VINE VOICE on September 18, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
All history books should be written as well as Thomas Costain's "The Three Edwards." A comprehensive guide to the lives and labors of the great warrior kings Edward I and Edward III and the screw-up, Edward II, who ruled in between them, this book unfolds more like an easy-to-read and hard-to-put-down novel. Divided into short, easily manageable and well-organized chapters, it covers everything from the marriages of the kings and their children, the political highs and lows of their reigns, the manner of their deaths and the major battles of their wars. Many books about this era are hard to follow if you don't already have a good working knowledge of the time period. Costain avoids this problem by telling you who the people are, what they looked and acted liked, and why they are important to the story, helping you keep track of them by reminding you when he's spoken of them before, and generally describing the people so well that they don't just become a series of names that you can't keep track of. Although he obviously admires Edward I, has disdain for Edward II, and seems to be neutral toward Edward III, to whom about half the book is devoted, he is careful to point out both the good and bad in each of their characters and to place their actions in the context of their times. Plenty of space is given to the kings' ministers, merchants, wives and families, and to those of the Scottish and French rulers with whom the Edwards were at constant war, including Robert the Bruce, William Wallace, John Balliol, Philip the Fair, Jean the Good, and Charles the Bald.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of a quartet that Costain wrote describing the monarchs and key events in European history from William the Conqueror to the War of the Roses. The history is accurate. It is always clear where Costain is speculating and where he is drawing on traditional sources, such as the various chronicles of the era. However, he weaves them together so smoothly that the reader needs concern her/himself with documentation only when it pleases. Costain is first and foremost a good story teller and an elegant writer.
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Format: Hardcover
Costain does a great job with this overview of the first named Edwards to lord it over the English throne. From the fierce but just Edward I ("Hammer of the Scots") to the effete and ineffectual Edward II to the long-reigning and erratic Edward III, the author sustains our interest with anecdotes and thorough reporting of the times. Costain has a delightful habit of suddenly focusing on a historical figure one doesn't generally hear about and then presenting the reader with yet another biography to get excited about. Well done, well written. well read.
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Format: Hardcover
Like the other reviewers, I think this book is terrific, and well-worth reading for anyone interested in medieval English history. Even if you're simply a Mel Gibson fan interested in the real story about William Wallace ("Braveheart"), you might find the book edifying and entertaining. (Mel seems to have taken considerable liberty with the real story, perhaps relying on a poetic rendition of Wallace's exploits written 200 years after his death.) Edward I ("Longshanks") is no modern liberal, of course, but he has redeeming points (being the "English Justinian" -- a lawgiver) not recognized in the movie. Costain's prose is consistently readable and entertaining. The subject matter, far from being dull, is inherently dramatic -- a reminder of how far human society has come since the barbarous Middle Ages. The book also creates appreciation for the unique aspects of English history, which made our Mother Country, for all its faults, the birthplace of modern democracy.
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Format: Hardcover
Costain has a touch for history, especially with the Plantagenets. This book follows the fortunes of two of the Plantagenet kings seen in Braveheart-Edward the Longshanks (Edward I) and his son, Edward II. Costain's very thorough work allows you to see the many facets of the larger than life Plantagents. Edward I so deeply loved his wife Eleanor that when she died, he erected "Cherie Crosses" to mark each place where her coffin rested on its way to burial. Edward II's passion for favorites did not end with the notorius Piers Gaveston, the Dispenser brothers were added to the long list of royal favorites. The son Isabella of France gave birth to became the fabled Edward III, the great Plantagenet warrior and victor of Crecy and Poitiers. (Isabella went on to a less than savory career, too.) Interested? Want to how all three Edwards were really shaped by their environment? Treat yourself to this book. It's history that reads like a novel. (Just in case you like it, there are four more books about the illustrious House Plantagenet!)
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There are four books in this series, The Conquering Family, The Magnificant Century, The Three Edwards, and The Last Plantagents. This series covers English history from William the Conquerer to Richard the third. Costain writes history like a novel which I personally love. I know that some people object to his approach but I personally feel that the characters of the past come alive and the history is accurate.

The Three Edwards covers the reign of Edward the first through Edward the third. All history books should be this pleasurable to read. This should be in the library of all fans of English history.
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