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Summary

Here is the whole of recorded British royal history, from the legendary King Alfred the Great onwards, including the monarchies of England, Scotland, Wales and the United Kingdom for over a thousand years. Fascinating portraits are expertly woven into a history of division and eventual union of the British Isles - even royals we think most familiar are revealed in a new and sometimes surprising light.

This edition includes biographies of the royals of recorded British history, plus an overview of the semi-legendary figures of pre-history and the Dark Ages - an easliy understandable overview for history buffs.

Mike Ashley is the author and editor of over sixty books including Mammoth Book of Locked Room Mysteries, The Mammoth Book of Roman Whodunnits, The Mammoth Book of Historical Whodunnits and unabridged audio of The Brief History of King Arthur.

©2013 Mike Ashley (P)2013 Audible Ltd

Critic reviews

"Everything its title promises. The pages are filled with ... everything anyone might ever want to know about the royals." ( Publishers Weekly)
"Highly recommended." ( Choice)

What listeners say about A Brief History of British Kings and Queens

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Jam packed full.

A very quick whizz through British history. To mangle a phrase from the great Churchill " Never has so much been squeezed into so smaller space". The narration was well paced and the text its self was well written and, to myself, well researched.. A book that I'll definitely read again.

12 people found this helpful

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Easy to digest

Where does A Brief History of British Kings and Queens rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very well when compared to other historic books. Intentionally not too detailed for those wanting a more general history of the monarchy.

If you’ve listened to books by Mike Ashley before, how does this one compare?

Not applicable

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Not applicable

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Not applicable

Any additional comments?

A nice easy listen for those wanting a general view of the British monarchy

4 people found this helpful

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Very informative

It's a book of facts and dates so it was never going to get 5 stars. There is quite a lot of repetition if you listen from start to finish due to the overlap of monarchs. But that's not all bad as it's a lot of information to take in. A very concise but detailed history that will tell you all you really need to know.

2 people found this helpful

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great kings & queen listen

if you are into your history, this is a great listen. just enough detail to keep you interested.

1 person found this helpful

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History made interesting

Enjoyed the organised potted historys of each king and queen and the context of each successor.

1 person found this helpful

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Great book for anyone interested in our Monarchy

Great book with a host of interesting stories that add to the overall history of our monarchy with personal and unique content previously unknown.

1 person found this helpful

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Fair

Mostly a list of dates some of the information good squeezed into the date listing

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far too fawning

A real struggle to finish this. Expected a little more of a balanced appraisal rather than the overly reverential approach taken by the author.

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Decent

I thought that this book gives a very good outline of the British monarchy. I liked that it branched out and looked at the Welsh leaders and the Scottish kings a little as well. It was a very interesting read, but it does leave you wanting to read other books to learn more.

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  • JKR
  • 16-02-18

Everything you need to know!

I loved this audio book! The narrator was fantastic and the sketches were just long enough to to cover the essentials, but short enough to keep me interested. Books like this can be tricky to listen to, with so many facts and dates, but I followed along and while I had a couple of rewinds for content I missed while in traffic (I largely listen in the car), I was able to keep up no problem. Full disclosure, I read the paperback version of this book about ten years ago and am pretty versed with the history of British Royals. So without that, it’s probably not the book for those otherwise engaged while listening.

This book not only covers the English but provides great context for the Welsh and Scottish Royals. One bonus for the audio book vs paper-pronunciation...the Welch language is pretty tricky for an American!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Robyn
  • 08-05-13

for absolute beginners only

If you want a brief history, this is it. It is necessarily quite superficial and, really, I shouldn't have bought it because I know nearly everything it contains and need depth rather than brevity - my mistake. It might be good for anyone who knows zilch about English history and wants a quick look at the monarchy from its inception until now, but I suspect that anyone interested enough to buy the book would be interested in learning more than this quick sweep can provide. Still, if it's just an overview you want it's well put together and well read and easy to listen to.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Andy C
  • 13-02-22

Informative but too much information

There was a vast amount of information in this book and the author did a great job getting it all in. That being said, there was too much time going back and forth between family lines. As an example, we'd hear about line of succession over say 200 years of the English throne, then we'd go back on the same line for Scotland and then Wales. Would have been better to discuss all at the same time so we can reflect on everything that happened during that period.

Difficult to cover everything that was happening so I will give the author a pass. Good book but sometimes got a little boring. I had to work hard to stay engaged.

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  • Jean D. Bates
  • 14-11-15

Best Ever!!!

What did you love best about A Brief History of British Kings and Queens?

Followed all the British kings and queens from the begining
I think it has the most coverage and best information that I have found on this subject

Who was your favorite character and why?

N/A

Which character – as performed by Roger Davis – was your favorite?

N/A

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes--I know I will listen to it several times

Any additional comments?

I would like to see his other book on this subject available for audio

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  • Cx care
  • 03-03-13

Great Book Will Listen all over again ############

This book was fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!! Story line and over roll performance #######
very happy with purchase

1 person found this helpful