Paul Cartledge, widely considered the world's leading expert on Sparta, engagingly examines the rise and fall of this singular society. In a narrative that resounds with the battle cries of the ancient Greeks, he takes a compelling look at the many illustrious Spartan figures from the worlds of history and legend, including Lycurgus, Lysander, King Leonidas, and Helen of Troy and Sparta.
©2002, 2003 Paul Cartledge; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"Engaging...Cartledge cloaks his erudition with an ease and enthusiasm." (Booklist)
"A fine overview of the rise and fall of a singular culture, spiced with anecdotes, quotations, brisk summary, and real insight." (Seattle Times)
"Remarkable...Cartledge's crystalline prose, his vivacious storytelling and his lucid historical insights combine here to provide a first-rate history of the Spartans." (Publishers Weekly)
While this book is obviously meticulously researched and painstakingly compiled, it is lacking in audio format, for the simple reason that it is extremely difficult to follow. The narration is well-done, but the story is hard to follow, lacks flow, and seems to be much more of a "scholarly history" without the narrative touch that makes history come alive in other audio books that I have enjoyed. I can't recommend this one.
This was very good, with interesting subject matter and good narration, but it requires your full attention if you are going to be able to follow it. This is a history, not a historical novel or novelized history, and if your mind wanders while you are listening then you wind up being completely lost.
In school, we would have considered this a "tough read" because it's so historical. With that understanding, I would recommend this book for its detail and fact.
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