Narrative History – An Underrated Genre

This post doesn't really have much to do with economics, politics and only historical relevance to Europe but I am unwell today so I needed to fill my time.

I recently read two Tom Holland Books, Persian Fire and Rubicon. Both are really excellent reads and should be thought of as excellent history books too. Persian Fire especially kept from interest from start to finish and Rubicon was truly excellent in bringing to life the characters of the major players in Rome towards the end of the Roman Republic.

Most certainly the best narrative histories I have read in a few years and beyond doubt the best classical history books I have read since finishing college.

I cannot help but admire the character of such figures as Gaius Julius Caesar, or Mark Anthony and even Pompey or Marius. The Greeks emerge as sparkling in their verve and toweringly proud. The descriptions of the dealings that went with Grecian politics during the Persian invasions and the creation of the massive Persian empire are excellently readable and very well captured.

Holland has an impressive talent in non-fiction and one I look forward to reading more from. Strangely enough he is also an successful fiction author and I have yet to sample his work in that field.

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