This was visiting the past in more ways than one. I revised placidly through the sections. It was a good digest of a long, varied period, and must have required serious reading and very good organisational skills from Dan Jones. It kept my attention to the end, yet it was somehow lacking in zip. I think there was a persistent failure to marshal the mots justes, so that it was difficult even to pick out typos: did the text say ‘fractious’ when Jones meant ‘factious’? Or did he and his editor not really know the difference? Neither adjective seemed to add value to the sentence. Over 636 pages, this degraded perspicuity, and wit was out of the question.
Here are some who did it better:
I’m carping. But all the best titles end up bulged with book marks, and I am sad to report that The Plantagenets didn’t have a single one.
PS if an ad appears on a post, can someone kindly tell me what it is? Just checking!