The author of the "New York Times" bestseller The Plantagenets chronicles the next chapter in British history the historical backdrop for Game of Thrones. From the author of Magna Carta: The Birth of Liberty.
The crown of England changed hands five times over the course of the fifteenth century, as two branches of the Plantagenet dynasty fought to the death for the right to rule. In this riveting follow-up to The Plantagenets, celebrated historian Dan Jones describes how the longest-reigning British royal family tore itself apart until it was finally replaced by the Tudors. Some of the greatest heroes and villains of history were thrown together in these turbulent times, from Joan of Arc to Henry V, whose victory at Agincourt marked the high point of the medieval monarchy, and Richard III, who murdered his own nephews in a desperate bid to secure his stolen crown.
This was a period when headstrong queens and consorts seized power and bent men to their will. With vivid descriptions of the battles of Towton and Bosworth, where the last Plantagenet king was slain, this dramatic narrative history revels in bedlam and intrigue.
It also offers a long-overdue corrective to Tudor propaganda, dismantling their self-serving account of what they called the Wars of the Roses.
Praise for "The Wars of the Roses" It s not often that a book manages to be both scholarly and a page-turner, but British historian Jones succeeds on both counts in this entertaining follow-up to his bestselling The Plantagenets. . . . He sets a new high-water mark in the current revisionism of the Tudor era. "Publishers Weekly" (starred review) Jones authoritatively sets the scene for the 15th-century succession crises . . . valiantly pared down for fluid readability. " Kirkus Reviews" Exhilarating, epic, blood-and-roses history. There are battles fought in snowstorms, beheadings, jousts, clandestine marriages, spurious genealogies, flashes of chivalry and streaks of pure malovelence. . . . Jones s material is thrilling, but it is quite a task to sift, select, structure, and contextualize the information. There is fine scholarly intuition on display here and a mastery of the grand narrative; it is a supremely skilful piece of storytelling. "The Sunday Telegraph" Jones s greatest skill as a historical writer is to somehow render sprawling, messy epochs such as this one into manageable, easily digestible matter; he is keenly tuned to what should be served up and what should be omitted. And he still finds rooms for the telling anecdote and vivid descriptive passage. It makes for an engrossing read and a thoroughly enjoyable introduction to the Lancastrian-Yorkist struggle. "The Spectator" A fine new history . . . Tautly structured, elegantly written, and finely attuned to the values and sensibilities of the age, "The Wars of the Roses "is probably the best introduction to the conflict currently in print. "The Mail on Sunday" Jones is a born storyteller, peopling the terrifying uncertainties of each moment with a superbly drawn cast of characters and powerfully evoking the brutal realities of civil war. With gripping urgency he shows this calamitous conflict unfold. "The Evening Standard"(London) Jones tells a good story. That is a good thing, since storytelling has gone out of favor among so many historians. . . . He admits that the era is at times incomprehensible, yet he manages to impose upon it sufficient order to render this book both edifying and utterly entertaining. His delightful wit is as ferocious as the dreadful violence he describes. "The Times"(London)"