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Book review: 'Tudors' exceptionally well written, with broad appeal

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 5 2015 4:42 a.m. MDT

"Tudors: The History of England from Henry VIII to Elizabeth I" is a nonfiction book by Peter Ackroyd. (St. Martin's Press)

Editor's note: This is one of a half dozen books that explores the lives of different figures in British royal history, including several set in the court of Henry VIII.

"TUDORS: The History of England from Henry VIII to Elizabeth I," by Peter Ackroyd, Thomas Dunne Books, $29.99, 507 pages (nf)

Peter Ackroyd is one of Britain’s most acclaimed writers and has earned the titles of Commander of British Excellence and Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature for his work. His latest project is being called a “landmark, six-part history” of England itself. The second book in this series — "Tudors: The History of England from Henry VIII to Elizabeth I" — explores every nuance and small detail of the Tudor dynasty.

Beginning in the early 1500s, Ackroyd’s book explores the reign of Henry VIII and his quest for a male heir to his throne, which led directly to the English Reformation and corresponding split from the Catholic Church in Rome.

Ackroyd also details the way that Mary I violently forced her subjects back to Catholicism before the last of the Tudors, Elizabeth I, brought stability throughout her 45-year reign that saw her overcome civil strife and an attempted invasion by the Spanish Armada in 1588.

Ackroyd’s in-depth research and writing style bring these true stories of history to vivid life on the pages of "Tudors." The details are so intricate that readers can almost picture themselves in England, smelling the burning fires during the reign of “Bloody Mary.” The author also ensures that the historical context isn’t revised in any way, which makes this book a good read for any audience.

Landon Walters is a history and political science major at Salt Lake Community College. He is an avid sports fan and loves writing. Email: mavericksoccer_22@hotmail.com

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