england,scotland,wales books to read

on previous tauck tours there has usually been a recommended reading list . i have not found one for this tour. this is about literature and biographies . Any suggestions.? I have read three Inspector Morse books by Colin Dexter, have tried to re-read Pride and Prejudice and have started a biography of Winston Churchill.


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    It really depends on your interests. If you are interested in the medieval history of England (and Scotland) you could read Marc Morris's books The Norman Conquest and A Great and Terrible King (Edward 1, including the battles between Scotland and England and Wales and England). Also Dan Jones series from 1066 through the Wars of the Roses (The Plantagenets, The Hollow Crown, The Wars of the Roses).
    By the way, when you are in London consider going to the British Library (a short walk from St Pancras) to see Magna Carta, Shakespeare folios, early Bibles, etc. We really enjoyed that.
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    The company that used to provide the book list is no longer doing that.

    Rick Steves guide books have both book and movie recommendations so you might buy or borrow a copy from the library. Lots of good suggestions there.

    You might also search through Amazon listings for books on ESW history.

    On my personal list I'd add Edward Rutherfords books London and Sarum. Something on Scottish history or at least Mary Queen of Scots. Churchill is good -lots about him on the tour. On Jane Austen a better choice is Persuasion which actually takes place in Bath. Watch any of the Morse, Lewis and/or Endeavor TV series.

    Enjoy, it's a great tour.
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    How about “Wolf Hall” by Hilary Mantel (booker winner about Henry VIII and Cromwell...lots about old Henry on this tour) and you could follow it up with her sequel, “Bring Up the Bodies.” On a much lighter note how about a little Bill Bryson...”Notes From a Small Island” and “The Road to Little Dribbling”? The later has a great chapter about Oxford. Also, in Bath, as you tour the baths Bryson has a number of descriptive snippets on your audio guide. Also, in preparation, it might be helpful to bone up a bit on Mary Queen of Scots and James I ( who is also James VI), but I do not have a book to recommend for them. Wish I did. If you find a good one , come back on the forum with the title.
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    Mary Queen of Scots by Antonia Fraser will give you more than you probably want to know about Mary Queen of Scots.
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    For a humorous look at Britain, I cast a second vote for Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson - one of my favorite authors. For a good history of Britain, Simon Schama's two volume History of Britain is awesome, but probably more of a read than most people want. It is based on his 15 hour TV series which is available on DVD and may be available online. Nigel's Jones' The Tower is a very good history of the Tower of London's central role in British history. Also, David Starkey's TV series Monarchy (DVD and online?) is very good.
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    Great suggestions guys.

    If you have Netflix, I'd add the series "Secrets of Great British Castles" - series 1 and 2 which includes Caernarfon Castle, Stirling, and Edinburgh (all on the Tauck tour) and the Tower of London if you take time to see that while you're there. We did so on the day the tour had a bus trip around the town and the TD let anyone who wanted to get off by the Tower.

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