'As gripping as any thriller. History doesn't get any better than this' BILL BRYSON
'A brilliant read ... Spencer has a real facility for getting these characters to leap fully formed from the page ... Game of Thrones but in the real world' ANTHONY HOROWITZ
'How a drunk teenager shipwrecked the monarchy ... As colourful and racy narrative history goes, this absolutely gallops ... Whips through a hundred years of complex history from the Norman Conquest to Henry II' Daily Mail
"Vividly conjures up this half-forgotten medieval tragedy and its consequences"Daily Mail, Books of the Year
"An epic, gripping history of hubris, piety, treachery, happenstance, rebellion and slaughter." Catholic Herald
'Rooted in the medieval chronicles, but crafted like a Hollywood thriller. Spencer is one of the finest narrative historians around'
Mail on Sunday
'Charles Spencer is a gifted storyteller ... Pivoted on one single, tragic winter evening. It is an event and a period of history that should be better known, and now it will be'
'Spencer proves himself more than a match for the story. He guides the reader well through the dramatic twists and turns of these years, which first placed Henry on the throne, then seemed set to deny the succession of his progeny. Spencer has a particularly good eye for detail, enriching his account with vivid pen-portraits of the main players ... Fast-paced and immensely enjoyable'
'Neglected by popular historians, [Henry I] ... has found a master storyteller in Charles Spencer ... rooted in excellent historical research ... a lyrical, vivid and compelling portrait. He succeeds in bringing to life huge characters from nearly a millennium ago'
'An exhilarating narrative full of incident and insight. Here is the story, marvellously told, of the post-Conquest kings - and one almost-queen - of England: unpredictable, violently dramatic, and never less than compelling' Helen Castor
'Told with verve and an exceptional eye for detail, this is the story of how a single catastrophe changed the course of British history forever. Dramatic, compelling and utterly addictive'