I might listen to it again for research purposes.
I like Ian McKellen's narration the best. He does a great job throughout.
As other reviewers have mentioned, there are several places where it's apparent that some of the narration has been dropped or clipped. Also, the sound quality is inconsistent. Sometimes it's clear and rich, other times it's barely audible. If not for Ian McKellen's narration, I probably would not have finished this book.
I like Amy Poehler. So I expected to like this book. But I ended up liking it so much more than I ever expected. Amy is honest, funny, and good writer. She is just like you and me, except she is rich and famous. But somehow you end up not holding this against her. I think it's because in the end the impression you get is that she is just so freakin' normal. I liked her before I read the book. I like her even more now.
Professor Paxton is a delight. She covers approximately 1,000 years of history in 30-odd lectures, and the narrative holds together throughout. She does a great job of identifying and weaving in the grand themes of British history: The Crown vs. The Church, The Nobels vs. The Kings, The French vs. The British, the People vs. the Nobility. She ends up making a very convincing case that Britain's long dominance on the world stage is due in no small part to the fact that the institution of the monarchy was able to listen to the needs and complaints of the non-royal classes and adapt to them, sometimes kicking and screaming, to be sure, but adapting none the less. There is a very important lesson here for virtually every other country on Earth.
Maddow does a good job of tracing the history of the use - and usurpation of - military power by the Executive branch. This book is a polemic, but it's very well supported with historical research.
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