Monday, November 25, 2013

Alfred the Great (2005)

Alfred the Great. Justin Pollard. 2005. John Murray. 368 pages. [Source: Library]

I liked this biography of Alfred the Great. I can see why it might not appeal to every reader. Why it might not be considered a must-read by everyone. Not everyone gets excited by history. But I did enjoy learning more about Alfred the Great. This biography was pleasantly complex. It was rich in detail; it wasn't always the easiest to follow. I wouldn't want to be quizzed necessarily. But at the same time I was fascinated that there was so much to know, that so much has been passed down to us, that there are historians who specialize in this time period. There is a great deal about Vikings in this biography, which is just what I was looking for...

Since falling in love with Vikingland, I wanted to learn more. The song goes, "We split your isles diagonally from south-east to north-west. Our section was called the Danelaw, King Alfred ruled the rest" and "though we began as raiders so well-planned you accepted us as traders." The song does have a propaganda feel (in a good way) to it.

I found plenty within this one to interest me. Readers can learn a lot about Anglo-Saxon culture through the centuries. My goal was mainly big-picture. As I said earlier, there was a lot of information that could be absorbed by a careful reader or scholar. I wasn't trying to learn-to-remember every little thing. 

© 2013 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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