William Marshal’s life in the 12-13th centuries is brought to life in this interesting biography. Asbridge got most of the information for this book fWilliam Marshal’s life in the 12-13th centuries is brought to life in this interesting biography. Asbridge got most of the information for this book from an all-but-forgotten contemporary biography which is now known as the History of William Marshal. In his life, Marshal went from a baron’s second son to a landless knight to a knight serving in six royal households – from Eleanor of Aquitaine to Henry II, Young King Henry (Henry II’s son), Richard I, John I and Henry III. In his incredible 70+ years, he was known for his loyalty and his ability to fight not only on the tournament field but also on the battle field. Asbridge brings William’s story to life and gives just enough information on the events surrounding his life to really put him in his historical context. The reader learns about each of the rulers he served along with a bit about the Crusades, religious and political upheavals and also about how the idea of chivalry was shaped in this period and how the knights of the time followed certain ideas and ideals in both battle and their everyday life. I really came away impressed at William Marshal’s loyalty to England’s royalty and the lengths he went to be their sword, even when it looked as if it was the wrong path for him to take. I was also very interested in learning more about King John, and had a hard time looking at him as anything but a maneless lion.
I recommend this book for any history lover, or just someone interested in soldiers, biographies and life with royalty....more
As a librarian & a cat-lover, I've been wanting to read this book for a long time. I am very glad I finally got to it, but was slightly disappointAs a librarian & a cat-lover, I've been wanting to read this book for a long time. I am very glad I finally got to it, but was slightly disappointed that the book was almost more of a memoir for author Vicki Myron than a biography of Dewey, the library cat.
Myron found Dewey in the library book-drop after a very cold Iowa winter night, and she fell in love with him on sight. I followed her description of her relationship with Dewey Readmore Books with a smile, as I have had similar feelings for each of my cats in turn. I wanted more antidotes of Dewey's life in the Spenser Public Library but got many details of Myron's personal life and the challenges she has faced. Her life story is very inspirational in its own way, but it detracted a bit from the library cat story. ...more
This is a very interesting & in-depth look at the life & times of Han Van Meegeren. Van Meegeren was a painter in his own right, but he did noThis is a very interesting & in-depth look at the life & times of Han Van Meegeren. Van Meegeren was a painter in his own right, but he did not get the recognition he thought he deserved so he took to forgery & was able to sell his "Vermeer" paintings for astronomical prices both before & during World War II. He was able to dupe art historians & buyers in the era before much chemical testing by using a variety of materials including Bakelite e as the paint medium in conjunction with pigments used in the 17th Century. Author Jonathan Lopez outlines the various forgeries Van Meegeren painted, and helps illustrate why art historians & experts of the time were duped by these modern paintings. Lopez also shows how Van Meegeren was a Nazi sympathizer and how he used Nazi imagery in his forgery. All in all a very interesting look at the art world of the Netherlands in the 1930s & 40s. ...more
My interest on King George was peaked by the recent movie of the same name, but I was unprepared for the wealth of knowledge and interest this book coMy interest on King George was peaked by the recent movie of the same name, but I was unprepared for the wealth of knowledge and interest this book contained. This book was written by Lionel Logue's grandson, based on diaries & letters of the period.
Lionel Logue was a speech therapist who helped King George VI of England with his stuttering before he took the throne, and also with his speech writing/editing once he was made King. Their relationship turned into an odd friendship as King & Subject worked closely together and learned to trust each other.
This book is a very good read & I recommend it for anyone interested in this time period or British royalty. I listed to it as an audiobook, and encourage people to search it out! It includes the complete speech delivered by King George on Sep 3, 1939, the day that Britain declared war on Germany....more