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Lancaster and York: The Wars of the Roses | [Alison Weir]

Lancaster and York: The Wars of the Roses

Lancater and York is a riveting account of the Wars of the Roses, from beloved historian Alison Weir. The war between the houses of Lancaster and York was characterised by treachery, deceit, and bloody battles. Alison Weir's lucid and gripping account focuses on the human side of history. At the centre of the book stands Henry VI, the pious king whose mental instability led to political chaos, and his wife Margaret of Anjou, who took up her arms in her husband's cause and battled in a violent man's world.
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Publisher's Summary

Lancater and York is a riveting account of the Wars of the Roses, from the beloved and best-selling historian Alison Weir. The war between the houses of Lancaster and York was characterised by treachery, deceit, and bloody battles. Alison Weir's lucid and gripping account focuses on the human side of history. At the centre of the book stands Henry VI, the pious king whose mental instability led to political chaos, and his wife Margaret of Anjou, who took up her arms in her husband's cause and battled in a violent man's world.

©1995 Alison Weir (P)2012 W F Howes Ltd

What Members Say

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3.7 (24 )
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3.7 (21 )
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  •  
    Neil Chisholm Buninyong, Australia 08-09-12
    Neil Chisholm Buninyong, Australia 08-09-12 Member Since 2011

    "fabric artist and quilter"

    HELPFUL VOTES
    250
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    93
    81
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    43
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Medieval Murder and Mayhem"

    The time before the Tudors has always confused me - its a turbulent history of different dynasties deposing kings and restorations, of genealogies and bloody battles. The Tower of London the main prison at that time almost had a revolving door on it!

    It intrigued me but remained confused - not so after Alison Weir's book. I was riveted and hung on every sentence as the political ambitions were explained as were why and how thing happened in the sequence they did. Weir obviously did extensive research and it showed but not in a negative learned way but in precise and clear explanations.

    My only criticisms were the annoying translation of pounds, shillings and pence into modern pounds and "pees" but leaving Marks and Livres totally untranslated to modern amounts and Maggie Mash's accents grated occasionally.

    I recommend this book to those who love old English history and a jolly good tale of medieval murder and mayhem.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Whitstable, United Kingdom 10-20-12
    Stephen Whitstable, United Kingdom 10-20-12 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Clear, engaging, and fascinating"

    Alison Weir has that rare gift of making the convoluted and confusing seem clear and straightforward. She also brings various of the key personalities to life, reminding us that in this violent era,, it was as much people's foibles as glorious leadership, that forged countries.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-2 of 2 results
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  • michael
    No 25 spalding avenue, United Kingdom
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Reasonable effort"

    The content is interesting but the narrator is annoying when she does the silly voices all the time. It really breaks the pace

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Kirstine
    Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom
    11/26/12
    Overall
    "A complex time in history brought to life"

    The War of the Roses is a complex period of English history, but I felt that this book made it much more interesting and brought the characters to life. There's a lot of historical detail and many characters to keep track of, but I found it an engaging story. I knew the bare bones of the conflict, but learned a lot from this book. If you like history, you'll enjoy the book. The reader is good.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Eleanor
    Chorleywood, United Kingdom
    9/29/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "No wiser about this history"
    What would have made Lancaster and York better?

    Better narrator. The slow pace with too much "expression" and very bizarre accents whenever reporting speech were so irritating I have not been able to finish even the first volume


    What other book might you compare Lancaster and York to, and why?

    Alison Weir's other books which I have enjoyed


    Who might you have cast as narrator instead of Maggie Mash?

    Anybody


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Lancaster and York?

    Left it entire, it's a fascinating story


    Any additional comments?

    Very disappointing - I had been looking forward to a long read about a period of which I know little.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • phantom lover
    uk
    11/16/12
    Overall
    "Lots of detail"

    This is a well researched book.Full of lots of detail which helps to bring it to life.Generally I found it enjoyable,the only little niggle is Maggie Mashs' habit of using accents on every quote and it has 1 or 2 boring bits.But still informative and interesting otherwise.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Patabee
    Notts., United Kingdom
    8/15/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good value for money"

    Very good book, but spoiled by the narration. Magpie Mash over-does the "quotes'" by trying to act the character's voice. I found this to be very irritating, and it seemed over-indulgent on her part. Apart from this, she reads very well, but someone needs to have a word with her!
    Having said that, I have listened to this book time and time again. This period of history is very interesting but, as I listen in bed, I fall asleep so there is always something I have missed!
    I would recommend to anyone interested in medieval history.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Rob O
    Huddersfield United Kingdom
    5/11/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too long and detailed"

    I really wanted to like this book. I like the subject area , I am interested in it and wanted to learn more about a fascinating area of British History.
    Unfortunately this book goes into far too much detail to retain, follow or retain interest.
    The narrator also peppers the book with very dodgy foreign accents
    It's been a chore ploughing through this.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ama
    High Wycombe, United Kingdom
    8/11/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The Cousins war"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It's an excellent book that gives a full grounding on the conflict, it's obscure causes and it's fatal (for the plantagenets) end.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Lancaster and York?

    The results of Edward IV's misalliance with his commoner Queen, the splintering away of the Neville faction, the redeption government and Edward IV's landing in ravenspur.


    Which character – as performed by Maggie Mash – was your favourite?

    Probably obscure but the various ambassadors and visiting dignitaries.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The slaying of a hart, the rising of esses,will crown falcon


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Steven
    Rugby, United Kingdom
    12/11/12
    Overall
    "Excellent narrative and insights"

    The only downside with this book is its length - it's a bit of an endurance test, as the author has to reach back to the period of Richard 2nd (near 60 years before the Wars of the Roses started) to set the essential background. But once you get into the central theme of the political intrigues surrounding the reign of Henry 6th you will find yourself wanting to know what happens next (and it's usually another battle of some new act of treachery and betrayal - all great stuff !).

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Fatmusketeer
    Warwick, UK
    12/8/12
    Overall
    "Fastinating and gripping history"

    I bought this book because I am familiar with Shakespeare's history plays and wanted to find out more about the events of the Wars of the Roses. The book is well reasearched, full of detail and covers the period of the plays between Richard II and the end of Henry VI Part 3. It tells very clearly the gripping history of the period and the story of the vivid characters such as Queen Margaret of Anjou and Warwick the Kingmaker.

    My one quibble is the same as that of a previous reviewer. The narrator is generally excellent, but I found the use of accents and voices for the quotes overdone (Allo', Allo' sometimes sprang to mind!).

    I would particularly recommend this book to anyone with a knowledge of Shakespeare's history plays, particularly the Henry VI trilogy. It will enrich your enjoyment of the plays and the plays add resonance to the events narrated in the book.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Alison
    Burnham-on-Sea, United Kingdom
    11/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Incredible Events - Oddly Dull in Presentation"

    It is a bit dull, which is odd considering the incredible events that it covers are so dramatic. I like 'academic' presentations and I think AW does a great job in this, and her other non-fiction titles, at making history live, whilst retaining historical integrity.

    But in this book, I wonder if part of the problem is the narration. The reader has a nice voice, when she is just reading. A bit querulous, but soothing. But the accents - European and all sorts of growly, British attempts, were really quite annoying. AW always tells us that, for example, the Italian Ambassador is about to speak; I do not need a theatrical Italian accent to drive this point home. If it was a novel, maybe it would be alright, but it's not.

    Anyway, I carried on to the end, despite several times thinking I'd pack it in. I learned a lot, I just didn't enjoy it very much.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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