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Saxons vs Vikings [PDF / Epub] ☆ Saxons vs Vikings ✩ Ed West – A witty and concise look at the beginnings of English history when the nation consolidated after clashes between the Saxons and invading VikingsIn 871 three of England's four kingdoms were overrun by A witty and concise look at the beginnings of English history when the nation consolidated after clashes between the Saxons and invading VikingsIn three of England's four kingdoms were overrun by Vikings the ruthless all conuering Scandinavian raiders who terrorized early medieval Europe With the Norsemen murdering one king with arrows and torturing another to death by ripping out his lungs the prospects that faced the kingdom of Wessex were bleak Worse still the Saxons were now led by a young man barely out of his teens who was interested Saxons vs PDF/EPUB ² in God than fighting Yet within a decade Alfred—the only English king known as the Great—had driven the Vikings out of half of England and his children and grandchildren would unite the country a few years later This period popular with fans of television shows such as Vikings and The Last Kingdom saw the creation of England as a nation state with Alfred laying down the first national law code establishing an education system and building cities Saxons vs Vikings also covers the period before Alfred including ancient Britain the Roman occupation and the Dark Ages explaining important historical episodes such as Boudicca King Arthur and BeowulfPerfect for newcomers to the subject this is the second title in the new A Very Very Short History of England series If you’re trying to understand England and its history in the most informative and entertaining way possible this is the place to start.

  • Hardcover
  • 144 pages
  • Saxons vs Vikings
  • Ed West
  • 06 January 2015
  • 9781510719859

10 thoughts on “Saxons vs Vikings

  1. Noah Goats Noah Goats says:

    Historians aren’t particularly funny people and when I start reading a work of popular history and it becomes apparent that the author thinks he’s a comedian my usual impulse is to cringe But Ed West is actually pretty funny his jokes do not make me cringe and he gets away with writing this history of the Saxons’ struggles with the Vikings in a comic toneThis struggle epic though it was happened a long time ago and our resources for researching it are pretty thin West does a good job of telling the story admitting that many of the sources simply can’t be trusted This is a very readable entry level book on the subjectMy biggest complaint is that for a book called Saxons vs Vikings it doesn’t even mention Cnut This is sort of ridiculous How can you tell the story of the Saxon struggle against the Vikings without even name dropping Cnut? If you read only this book you’d be left with the mistaken impression that after Athelstan England was never again seriously threatened by the Vikings but this is obviously not true The Vikings went on to capture the whole shebang eventually only to lose it again almost immediately but still give the man a shoutout

  2. Ryan Ryan says:

    Surprisingly good short book which described the pre 1066 period in England — the waves of people who lived there the pre indo Europeans the britons and celts Romans the Anglo Saxon invasion and Viking and Danish invasions Culminates in Alfred the Great and his grandson the start of modern united England

  3. Noreen Noreen says:

    Couldn't put this down FUN history woo hoo what a conceptBefore Chick Lit was a genre I accidentally read Anya Seton's Katherine in high school Katherine was John of Gaunt's long time mistress eventual wife and mother of the Plantagenets? Imagine my surprise to find Katherine was a real person in the War of the Roses When I heard George RR Martin's Game of Thrones was based on history decided to find background reading Read a few books about Vikings after watching the History Channel Viking series Enjoyed the connections between Vikings GOT King Arthur and JRR Tolkien Straightened out the differences between Saxons and Normans GOT Seven Kingdoms based on Kent Sussex Essex Wessex East Anglia Mercia and Northumbria Ragnar Lothbrok and all of his sons and their fates Then the Guardian of Mankind adorned this middle earth below the world for men Caedmon first English poet 650 AD JRR Tolkien Anglo Saxon Scholar Was not aware of the debate over who was the first English king Some history books say it's William the Conueror others Alfred the Great Thank you Ed West Keep writing Very Very Short History How about a Middle EastLevant tribal history George RR Martin references to GOT Dotraki nomadic tribes Men of Knights Watch based on Templars Hospitalliers Knights of St John Wildings north of the wall must be Vikings

  4. Richard Thomas Richard Thomas says:

    Enjoyable gallopIt’s an enjoyable gallop through English history from pre roman times to the last of Alfred the Great’s direct kin The learning is worn lightly under a chatty style but you could do a lot worse than this book if you wish to have a broad knowledge of the period

  5. Faith Justice Faith Justice says:

    A fast breezy read covering England from the time the Saxons arrived through the Viking invasions to Alfred's grandson Definitely an introduction for the person who has little knowledge of this era If you know the basics look elsewhere for a in depth study I would have given this book 4 stars for being a fun read except the author made a historical error on something he could have checked on Wikipedia much less looked up in a authoritative source In giving background on why Rome didn't come to England's aid when the Saxon's first invaded in the 5C he explained that Rome had barbarian problems of its own the Goths sacked Rome and kidnapped the Emperor Honorius' aunt The Goths actually kidnapped his half sister Galla Placidia I know this because I've done extensive research in this time for my novel where Galla Placidia is the protagonist It always jolts me when a historian gets these basic things wrong I realize West is specializing in the Saxons and the Vikings not the Romans but when an author is sloppy about something that is easily checked on what else has he got wrong? I'm not a specialist in his area so I don't know but it always leaves a lingering uestion in my mind about the accuracy of the other facts in the book

  6. Blair Hodgkinson Blair Hodgkinson says:

    This book is an introduction to the subject for the general reader written with wit and a will to entertain and as such it succeeds I uite enjoyed the book especially some of the passing small details the author stops to turn over often to edifying and humorous effect I have to hold back a star because the book badly needed another pass by the proof reader

  7. Bobby Bobby says:

    Great informative history lesson spiced up with perfect humorous sidebars Lots of names and events in a small time but easy to digest Kudos

  8. Chris Lawrence Chris Lawrence says:

    For as long as I can remember I have been obsessed with European medieval history and the various pop culture re imaginations of it From Tolkien to Dungeons Dragons to Game of Thrones Of late I have become increasingly interested in the time that Pagan religions existed side by side with the emerging Christian worldSaxon vs Vikings is a short breezy and funny romp through the history of the British Isles from the its time as a Roman outpost to just before the Norman invasion in 1066 It jumps a round eras and allows itself to tell colorful yarns because as the book states repeatedly there is little actual recorded history from this period So Ed West relies on the few sources available which exemplify the cliche that history is written by the victors or who was footing the bill and his own storytelling abilities He constantly winks and nods that he filling in many colorful details that make it read as much like historical fiction as it does the historical recordWest is a very talented writer at these kinds of Pop History books His cheekiness his comical connections to our modern culture and his newspaper columnist prose made the book highly entertaining but also light on analysis or deeper meaning The columnist part comes naturally for West as he is in fact a journalist columnist and blogger who over his career has written for The Catholic Herald The Daily Telegraph and The Spectator He also comes from a family of journalists and writers He is British and most definitely a right wing leaning opinion writer As I was reading Saxons vs Vikings can someone make this a mobile video game please it was obvious West’s politics given little jokes about immigration liberal values multiculturalism and other assorted snarks He is definitely the type of young white male authors that knows how to flip his privilege into kind of a funny pseudo rebellious “we are the new Punk Rock” vibe that I generally find nauseating But hey he is good at it And scanning through his other books and columns I won’t be reading The Diversity Illusion What We Got Wrong About Immigration How to Set it RightI had many an eye roll and my hackles perked up But if I am stepping out of my echo chamber I could do much worse then Ed West and some of his recent columns where he starts to grow frustrated at a conservative movement English version that often then not shoots itself in the face to “own the libs”Politics aside I am here for the tales about Alfred the Great the Sons of Ragnar mad monks and Woden and on that front this book is a rollicking good time If you are a fan of television shows and books like Game of Thrones The Last Kingdom Britannia and Vikings then this is the perfect compendium to help somewhat separate fact from fiction The next book I will read from Mr West will definitely be his upcoming April 2019 book Iron Fire and Ice The Real History that Inspired Game of Thrones But if I am honest I might also romp through his short histories of the Norman Invasion The War of the Roses and Charles “The Hammer” Martel

  9. Tom Metz Tom Metz says:

    A hodgepodge of history and biography interesting but disjointed

  10. Fernando Fernando says:

    A good uick read A sort of reader's digest of the dark ages in England

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