The Iron King : The Accursed Kings

  • by Maurice Druon
  • Narrated by Peter Joyce
  • Series: The Accursed Kings
  • 11 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

From the publishers that brought you A Game of Thrones comes the series that inspired George R.R. Martin’s epic work.
France became a great nation under Philip the Fair - but it was a greatness achieved at the expense of her people, for his was a reign characterised by violence, the scandalous adulteries of his daughters-in-law, and the triumph of royal authority.


What the Critics Say

"Blood-curdling tale of intrigue, murder, corruption and sexual passion" (The Sunday Times)
"Dramatic and colourful as a Dumas romance but stiffened by historical accuracy and political insight" ()The Sunday Times)
"Barbaric, sensual, teeming with life, based in wide reading and sound scholarship…among the best historical novels" (The Times Literary Supplement)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Historical Goodie

This was good - historical fiction like it used to be. I read it because George Martin recommended it as "the original Iron throne." I was not disappointed! It intrigued me and taught me some things, while making me feel like I was right there, exactly what I want from historical fiction. This story begins in the reign of Phillip the Fair, when he is killing off the last of the Templars; it is essentially the prequel to the War of Roses.

Good companion reading to Rutherford's new historical fictional exploration of Paris ("Paris"). There is a time period in that book very close to this one. Also, remember the beautiful Isabella, Queen of England in the movie Braveheart? She is Phillip's daughter and is featured in this.
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- SydSavvy "The Book Snob for Paris Life Magazine."

Like running itno an old Friend on a sunny day.

Where does The Iron King rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I read these books when I was younger, and I honestly was surprised to find them on here after many years not being released or being out of print these books were always hard to find in English. I know in both French and Russian they were very popular for many decades (and were recently made into mini-series with Gérard Depardieu in the role of the last Templar Grand Master Jacques de Molay).
Having listened to them now, I also have a whole new perspective of the Game of Throne books (another favorite), while these are very different genre the similarities between middle ages Europe and Westeros are amazing. I think the debt George RR Martin owes to historic fiction like this underlines a generation of writers for whom history was/is a source of inspiration.

What does Peter Joyce bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The performance is solid four stars, the only person I can think would sound better is Roy Dotrice.

Any additional comments?

This Series focuses on the events leading up to the 100 year was and the end of Capetian dynasty of France. For most people that's not exciting I suppose, but if you need a fix for Westeros while George is taking his time, this can be a touch of methadone (minus dragons and elaborate banner descriptions).

Additional value of this genre it actually opens you up to experience history through actions and character traits of real historical personages, even if embellished for fiction.

This particular book shows the France at a time when the feudal system was being dismantles for the sake nation states. When visionary kings began to centralize their authority from the feudal lords and consolidate it by relying on commerce and rising middle classes.

Maurice Druon wasn't just a historian and writer but also a member of the French government and I think he brings much of his own perspective on power and role of personalities and motivations in the events that change the course of countries.

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- Professor Woland

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-31-2013
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Limited