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This potted history of the British isles is an engaging whistle stop tour that begins with Julius Caesar landing on our shores and comes to rest as Queen Anne ascends the throne. Given the length and breadth of the subject matter and the sheer length of time it is covering, it is more of a superficial browse through the successive reigns of our kings and queens rather than a serious in depth re-telling of history. Nevertheless, it is easy listening and paints a cohesive timeline of events in very broad strokes, sometimes putting events in context and highlighting their impact in the ways that have survived to the present day. If you are an avid fan of any particular period of history, you may feel short-changed in the pencil sketch treatment of your favourite epoch, however, I defy any history buff not to be seduced by the clipped delivery of the narrators and the richness of the stories they tell.
As an additional note, as you reach the restoration of Charles II you may be surprised how the narration seems to speed past him with indecent haste. There is an error in the sequencing of the episodes where the restoration segment has been incorrectly inserted into the William of Orange chapters.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Yes but see below
What other book might you compare This Sceptred Isle: Collection 1 to, and why?
Have you listened to any of Anna Massey and Paul Eddington ’s other performances? How does this one compare?
Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
Only that I think Paul Eddington died or was seriously ill before he could finish the whole thing.
Any additional comments?
1 Why can't I review without answering above daft questions?
2 I downloaded to play on my MP3 and was a bit surprised to find the 1688 Glorious Revolution occurring before the Restoration in 1660. I think someone put the individual episodes together in the wrong order. I'll play Part 2 on random - it might make more sense.
Still the best way of being able to sound as if you know what you are talking about when answering quiz questions
6 of 9 people found this review helpful