I was at Borders a few nights ago and I picked up 'Warhammer 40,000: The Killing Ground', 'The Art of Clint Langley: Dark Visions from the grim Worlds of Warhammer', 'The Army of Flanders and the Spanish Road: 1567-1659' by Geoffrey Parker, 'Forgotten Wars: The End of Britain's Asian Empire' by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper and 'The grand Strategy of Philip II' by Geoffrey Parker.

I finished 'The Lover' by Marguerite Duras a few days back. I have just started on 'Battles of the Thirty Years War: From White Mountain to Nordlingen 1618-1635'. I am also in the midst of a few other books including 'God is not great: How religion poisons the world' by Christopher Hitchens.

What you are guys reading?

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Read: "The Perfect King: The Life of Edward III Father of the English Nation" by Ian Mortimer. A very good Bio on this English King who after French provocation, went to war to stop this French harassment. Modern historians called this war "The Hundred Years War". Highly Recommended.

"The Black Prince" by Henry Dwight Sedgwick. A bio on Edward III's eldest son who won a great victory over the French at Poitiers in 1356. He practically captured the nobility of France including the King. He died before becoming the King of England. His son Richard II would become king on the death of his grandfather Edward III. One of the worst kings England ever had. This book was originally printed in 1932. The English used in the book takes a "little" to get use too. Very Good and Recommended.

Reading "Sea of Gray" about the Rebel Raider "Shenandoah."  I may also pick up the game, Rebel Raiders, now that I'm into the nautical spirit of the ACW!

Read: "Conquest:The English Kingdom of France 1417-1450" by Juliet Barker. A good History of this last period of the Hundred Years War. The title says it all. There is more sieges than set piece battles. This does get dry at times in the telling, but overall, recommended for those interested in this topic. The English did not have enough soldiers and money to sustain this kingdom in France. 

"Edward IV and the Wars of the Roses" by David Santiuste. This is not just a bio on Edward IV but covers all the major actions of this civil war that destroyed the Plantagenet Dynasty, one of the greatest families in history, and then was replaced by the Tudor Dynasty. The Tudors were a "much ado about nothing family".  Excellent and Highly Recommended.

"Robert Bruce Our Most Valiant Prince, King and Lord" by Colm McNamee. A excellent bio on Robert the Bruce that pulls no punches. To win the "hearts and minds" of Scotland, Robert used the ruthless tactics of people like Stalin, etc.. On the positive side; if he had not, Scotland would be nothing more than a geographical name today like some other places around the world. There still is a Scottish people and nation. Highly Recommended.

Re-reading "On to Berlin" by James Gavin, commander of the 82 AB in WWII.

Read: "The Black Douglas: James the Good" by David R. Ross. The bio of Robert the Bruce's champion and Scotland's fiercest warrior. The English mothers would sing their children to sleep and warn them of "The Black Douglas", a nightmare to the English. Pretty Good and Recommended. The author fawns to much on "His" hero.

"William Marshal: Knighthood, War and Chivalry, 1147-1219" by David Crouch. A very Good Bio on William Marshall and his times. He rose from a hostage destine to be hanged to Regent of England and helped saved it from the French. A most extraordinary life. Highly Recommended.

Read: "The Man From Berlin" by Luke McCallin. A novel on a ex-police detective from Berlin, who is in the Abwehr now. He  is assigned to a mysterious murder case of a German officer and a Croat woman in Yugoslavia. The woman is a big star in the Ustase. It is a case of "trust no one". Very good and Recommended.

"A Man Without Breath" by Phillip Kerr. A Bernie Gunther Novel on the Katyn massacre of Polish Officers by the Soviets. Bernie is working for Goebbels now. This is in March 1943. Also a murderer is running around killing Germans and Russians and Bernie could be next on his/her list. Very Good and Recommended.

Read: "1066: The Year of The Three Battles" by Frank McLynn. This is a history of the Battle of Hastings, one of the decisive battles of World History. The author does a excellent job covering all the characters of the story, both big and small. Highly Recommended.

"The Teutonic Knights: A Military History" by William Urban. An outstanding read on this Military Order founded initially to fight the muslims in the Holy Land but ended up on the Frontier of Latin Christendom fighting Pagans in Prussia, etc.  Highly Recommended.

I'm finishing Monte Cassino: Ten Armies in Hell, but Peter Caddick-Adams.  It's pretty good, and the fact that he's actually visited the battlefield adds some insights. 

Read: "The Grand Strategy of the Byzantine Empire" by Edward N. Luttwak. Not as good as the author's earlier work on the Classical Period of Roman History. Lots of quotes of period writers that can be very dry at times. Only recommended to people with a big interest in the history of East Rome like me.

"The Byzantine Art of War" by Michael J. Decker. A excellent book on the Roman Empire of the East. Covers the same history as above but in a much more interesting style. Highly Recommended. 

"Justinian's Flea: Plague, Empire, and the Birth of Europe" by William Rosen. The central point of the book is the Bubonic Plague's devastation of the Med World and the aftereffects that would make it easy for the brutal muslim conquests. This in turn would cut Western Europe off from the East and lead to a "New Europe". Great Narrative history and keeps you reading to the end. The description of the Plague and how it works from the microscopic level on up to it's destruction of life is engrossing. There are errors of history and dates but does not distract from the story. Highly Recommended. 

Just got a copy of "Simulating War" by Philip Sabin.  I'm looking forward to getting an academic perspective on our hobby.

Read: "Theodora: Empress of Byzantium" by Paolo Cesaretti. The brilliant wife of Justinian the Great, but also ruthless, who put her stamp on this historical period right along side her husband. Without her, Justinian would of not been "Great". Very Good and Recommended.

"Constantinople: Capital of Byzantium" by Jonathan Harris. Starts in 1200 A.D. and gives a excellent history of this great city. Gives some flashbacks but covers the military, political, social, religious, and economic history from this central year to its fall to the 4th Crusade, with better reasons for this than I've read before, then carries on till its final fall in 1453A.D. Very Good and Recommended.

"The Lost Capital of Byzantium" by Steven Runciman. This is a history of Mistra and the Peloponnese, from the fall of Constantinople to the 4th Crusade in 1204A.D., to its conquest by the brutal muslims, then continues to its freedom with the rebirth of the State of Greece in the mid 1800's. Very Good and recommended.

"John Carter of Mars" Vol. One, by Edgar Rice Burroughs. This is the first 3 books in Mr. Burroughs series on John Carter. Read all these in my teen years and enjoyed them. Still very good after all these years. Highly Recommended.

"Mongols and Mamluks: The Mamluk-Ilkhanid War, 1260-1281" by Reven Amitai-Preiss. This is a excellent coverage of this period but mainly from the muslim side of things. The war continued after this period but the author covers just this opening round with coverage of battles, trade, social, and politics. See GMT's GBOH game, "The Devil's Horsemen" and module, "Mamluk", on this Historical Period. Recommended for book and the games.

Read: "Khartoum: The Ultimate Imperial Adventure" by Michael Asher. An outstanding history of this piece of British History, 1883-1898. Reads like a suspense novel. Highly Recommended. Dug up my old game on the Battle of Omdurman by Richard Berg in S&T Mag that is the climax of the book.

"The Victorians" by A.N. Wilson. A history of Queen Victoria's reign, 1837-1901. Very good and recommended. Nice little side story on the possibility that Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert, were not legitimate. The author presents his evidence that both Victoria's and Prince Albert's mothers had lovers. Quote by author: "If the suspicions about Victoria and Albert are well-grounded, this means that many of the crowned heads of Europe are descended jointly from an unscrupulous Irish soldier and a German Jew."

"The Caspian Gates: Warrior of Rome" by Harry Sidebottom. The 4th book in this Historical fiction series on the Third Century Crisis of the Roman Empire. The hero of the story, a Romanized Angle, is fighting Goths in Anatolia and then sent on a mission to the Caspian Gates in the Caucasus Mountains.  I Think I know were the author is going. Very Good and Recommended.


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