21 February, 2012

Ahh, History

Joseph H. Lynch

I kept on wanting to own this book as i was reading it; i would think that has to be a good sign! I don’t remember coming across Lynch previously, and i think i would remember, as he has a marvellously readable style which passes the facts along but doesn’t get in the way at all.

Though i am no expert, as far as i can tell the actual content is also of the same quality; i found only one factual error, though that is a curious mistake, which really need not have happened, had a copy editor have been doing his job. Lynch writes, “...of the eight men who ruled England between 1284 and 1485...” in a very odd sentence: First of all, it would have helped, rather than harmed his argument to pick 1307, the end of Edward I’s reign, as his start point; second, between Lynch’s dates ten men reigned (and arguably, even more “ruled”, but we needn’t go there) not eight. Still, one error, however bizarre, in over three hundred and fifty pages (including end matter) of print is not a bad score; it wasn’t even a part of his main argument or subject, so that would assign it even less value. All in all, this is a readable book, very readable, on an endlessly fascinating subject, and an admirable addition ~ except that it came from the library, so an "addition" it's not!

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