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Published in April 2014
Modern British Royalty
Pets by Royal Appointment: The Royal Family and Their Animals by Brian Hoey. Cats, dogs, horses, even parrots have acted as faithful companions to the British royal family for generations. This book offers details and anecdotes about favorite royal pets past and present.
A Century of Royalty by Ed West. Photos of British royalty in the 20th century.
Monarchy: Past, Present... and Future? by Christopher Lee. Examines the British monarchy's staying power beyond the current succession. Will Prince William's child ever inherit the Crown? Will William be "the last"?
British Royal History
Kings & Queens of Great Britain: A Very Peculiar History by Antony Mason. Which king's guards massacred his supporters by mistake? Who had an oversized tongue and slobbered when he ate? Meet the rulers, discover their bizarre habits, and enjoy quirky stories.
The King's Body: Burial and Succession in Late Anglo-Saxon England by Nicole Marafioti. Investigates the role of royal bodies, funerals, and graves in English succession debates from the death of Alfred the Great in 899 through the Norman Conquest in 1066.
The Queen's Dumbshows: John Lydgate and the Making of Early Theater by Claire Sponsler. Explores drama in 15th century England, including the relationship between private entertainment, such as household banquets, and public forms of political theater such as royal entries and processions.
Censoring Queen Victoria: How Two Gentlemen Edited a Queen and Created an Icon by Yvonne M. Ward. In 1901, two men were appointed to edit Queen Victoria's correspondence. Their decisions -- and distortions -- influenced perceptions of Victoria for generations to come.
Alfred: Queen Victoria's Second Son by John Van der Kiste. Biography. A patron of the arts and amateur violinist, Prince Alfred joined the Royal Navy as a boy and rose to become Admiral of the Fleet. At the age of 18 he was elected King of Greece, although politics prevented him from accepting the crown. Married to Grand Duchess Marie of Russia, his last years were overshadowed by marital difficulties and the suicide of his only son.
Cross and Scepter by Sverre Bagge. The rise of the Scandinavian kingdoms from the Vikings to the Reformation.
1014: Brian Boru and the Battle for Ireland by Morgan Llywelyn. Brian Boru, High King of Ireland is often dismissed as a mythical figure, but the author, a well-known historical novelist, believes he actually lived.
Hero or Tyrant? Henry III, King of France, 1574-89 by Robert J. Knecht. This biography follows Henry's upbringing as the Wars of Religion began to tear France apart, his election as king of Poland in 1573, and his assumption of the French crown a year later.
The Borgias: The Hidden History by G. J. Meyer. Their name has long been synonymous with unspeakable evil. But did the Borgias of legend actually exist? This book brings new insight to the real people within the dark myth.
The Last Crusade in the West: Castile and the Conquest of Granada by Joseph F. O'Callaghan. The Muslim rulers of Granada acknowledged Castilian suzerainty, but in the late 15th century Fernando and Isabel launched a decade-long effort to subjugate the emirate for religious reasons.
Albania's Mountain Queen: Edith Durham and the Balkans by Marcus Tanner. Edith Durham, a British writer, became a confidante of the King of Montenegro, ran a hospital in Macedonia and one of the world's first female war correspondents. She is fondly remembered in Albania to this day.
First World War
Wilhelm II: Into the Abyss of War and Exile, 1900-1941 by John C. G. Röhl. Examines the Kaiser's role in the origins of the First World War; the scandals of his reign; his abdication, bitter exile, and frustrated hopes that Hitler would restore him to the throne. (This is the third volume of a series; the first two books are Young Wilhelm and The Kaiser's Personal Monarchy, 1888-1900.)
A Mad Catastrophe by Geoffrey Wawro. The outbreak of World War I and the collapse of the Habsburg empire.
Napoleon in Italy: The Sieges of Mantua, 1796-1799 by Phillip R. Cuccia. The sieges of Mantua symbolized Napoleon's voracious determination to win and Austria's desperation to retain its possessions.
The Burning of Moscow: Napoleon's Trial by Fire 1812 by Alexander Mikaberidze. Napoleon's month-long stay in Moscow was a pivotal moment in the war of 1812 -- the moment when the initiative swung towards the Tsar's armies and spelled doom for the invading Grand Army.
Napoleon and the Revolution by David P. Jordan. This book argues that Napoleon saved the work of the French Revolution, albeit unintentionally.
Defending the City of God: A Medieval Queen, the First Crusades, and the Quest for Peace in Jerusalem by Sharan Newman. During the time of the Crusades, a group of sisters, daughters of the King of Jerusalem, held together fragile treaties and marriages among many different factions.
Life and Politics at the Royal Court of Aguateca: Artifacts, Analytical Data, and Synthesis edited by Takeshi Inomata and Daniela Triadan. Aguateca is a Classic Mayan site in Guatemala. This book examines the life of the Mayan royal family, nobles, and their retainers through analysis of the site's artifacts.
Royal Gardens: Private Gardens of the Imperial Family by Cheng Liyao. The development of Chinese imperial gardens from the Shang dynasty to the Qing dynasty. Includes 131 color photographs, 16 illustrations and figures, and two maps.
The Shadow Queen by Sandra Gulland. Novel about a personal attendant of Athénaïs de Montespan, mistress to French king Louis XIV.
Edwin: High King of Britain by Edoardo Albert. In 604 AD, Edwin, deposed king of Northumbria, rises to power and converts to Christianity.
King Charles III by Mike Bartlett. A 2014 "future history play." Queen Elizabeth II is dead: after a lifetime of waiting, Prince Charles ascends the throne. But how to rule?
The Lost King: Richard III and the Princes in the Tower by Alison Prince. A fictional look at the brief reign of Richard III, told through the eyes of his nephews' nursemaid. What really happened to the Princes in the Tower? Was Richard responsible?
Published in March 2014
Rebellion: Britain's First Stuart Kings, 1567-1642 by Tim Harris. The reigns of James VI and Charles I, and why ultimately all three of their kingdoms were to rise in rebellion against Stuart rule.
Queen Caroline: Cultural Politics at the Early Eighteenth-Century Court by Joanna Marschner. As the wife of King George II, Caroline of Ansbach made significant contributions to the arts and strengthened the royal family's connections to English society.
Bonnie Prince Charlie: Truth or Lies by Roderick Graham. Explores 10 myths about Bonnie Prince Charlie, revealing why he converted to the Church of England, who his mysterious wife was, and the real reason he wanted to take the British throne.
Literature and the Monarchy by Ewa Panecka. The traditional and modern concept of the office of Poet Laureate of England.
Thomas Cromwell: Servant to Henry VIII by David Loades. This biography shows how Cromwell managed his relationship with Henry VIII, and how he manipulated the politics of the court that eventually destroyed him.
The Progresses and Public Processions of Queen Elizabeth by John Nichols, edited by Elizabeth Goldring, Faith Eales, Elizabeth Clarke, Jayne Elisabeth Archer. Old-spelling edition of the early modern materials, based on a critical re-examination of sources. Includes translations of non-English material, full annotation, illustrations, and maps. Five-volume set (very expensive).
Four Sisters: The Lost Lives of the Romanov Grand Duchesses by Helen Rappaport. An account of the last tsar of Russia's daughters, Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia, drawing on their own letters and diaries and other primary sources.
Visual Texts, Ceremonial Texts, Texts of Exploration by Richard Wortman. Articles on the representation of the Russian monarchy in court ceremonials, parades, public festivities, and celebrations.
Vikings: Life and Legend edited by Gareth Williams, Peter Pentz, and Matthias Wemhoff; foreword by Queen Margrethe of Denmark. Explores Viking culture from a global perspective, focusing on the late 8th to early 11th centuries.
The Restoration of Rome: Barbarian Popes and Imperial Pretenders by Peter Heather. After the fall of the Roman Empire, each of the three greatest contenders for imperial power -- Theoderic, Justinian, and Charlemagne -- operated with a different power base but was successful in his own way.
The Medicean Succession by Gregory Murry. Monarchy and sacral politics in Duke Cosimo dei Medici's Florence.
Napoleon: Soldier of Destiny v. 1 by Michael Broers. The first biography of Napoleon that makes full use of the unsanitized version of his correspondence. It reveals a man of intense emotion, iron self-discipline, acute intelligence and immeasurable energy.
1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric H. Cline. In 1177 B.C., marauding groups known as the Sea Peoples invaded Egypt. They were defeated, but the victory so weakened Egypt that it soon slid into decline, as did surrounding civilizations. Bronze Age kingdoms fell like dominoes. No more Minoans or Mycenaeans. No more Trojans, Hittites, or Babylonians. How did it happen?
Faisal I of Iraq by Ali A. Allawi. Born in 1883, King Faisal I of Iraq was a central player in the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire and the establishment of new Arab states.
The Princess Nun: Bunchi, Buddhist Reform, and Gender in Early Edo Japan by Gina Cogan. Tells the story of Bunchi (1619-1697), a Buddhist nun who was the daughter of Emperor Go-Mizunoo, showing how her aristocratic status enabled her to carry out reforms despite her gender.
Living With the Ancestors: Kinship and Kingship in Ancient Maya Society by Patricia A. McAnany. Ancestor veneration in the Maya region traditionally was associated with divine kingship and royal genealogies. In this study, the author challenges this assumption.
Empress of the Night: A Novel of Catherine the Great by Eva Stachniak. The Russian monarch recalls her rise to the throne, her rule over the world's greatest power, and the sacrifices that made her the most feared woman of her time.
Queen Elizabeth's Daughter by Anne Clinard Barnhill. Mistress Mary Shelton is Elizabeth I's favorite ward, but when Mary falls in love with the wrong man and defies the Queen, Elizabeth's wrath knows no bounds.
The Chronicles of Pauncefoot and Longshanks: The Making of a King by David Stedman. Tells the story of a (fictional) jester who insinuates himself into the service of England's future king Edward I, known as Longshanks.
Black Rock by Louise Hoole. Should ambition cease with death? Napoleon Bonaparte doesn't think so. His ghost is hungrier than ever. Set in 1821 on the island of St Helena during the week between Napoleon's death and burial, this historical who-done-it draws upon the letters and memoirs of those who made up Napoleon's last court.
The Queen's Handmaid by Tracy L. Higley. From the servant halls of Cleopatra's Egyptian palace to the courts of Herod the Great, Lydia serves two queens to see prophecy fulfilled. (Christian fiction)
Books About African Royalty
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