Reviews

  • This is probably the best book ever written on the Habsburgs in any language, certainly the best I have ever read ... a brilliant achievement. Lucid, comprehensive and witty, it is not merely a pleasure to read but a complete education. Students, scholars and the general reader will never find a better guide to Habsburg history. No one will ever again know as much about the subject as Rady.

    Alan Sked, Times Literary Supplement
  • Riveting ... Rady is a lucid and elegant writer - historians are advised to follow his model of economy and concision. It is impossible to imagine a more erudite and incisive history of this fascinating, flawed and ultimately tragic dynasty.

    Paul Lay, The Times
  • In The Habsburgs, Martyn Rady has produced a Rolls-Royce of a narrative that motors through ten centuries of history with an effortlessness that belies the intellectual horsepower beneath the bonnet ... The vast cast of characters is depicted with a mix of insight, sympathy and astringent Gibbonian wit that makes them instantly memorable ... It is not the least of Martyn Rady's achievements that his book sheds light on the present almost as brightly as it illuminates the past.

    John Adamson, Literary Review
  • Magnificent ... Rady maintains unerring poise as he steers through the depths and complexities of his material. His erudition seems effortless, he never gets bogged down in detail, his prose is pellucid, and he spices the narrative with delightfully dry asides and telling anecdotes.

    Rupert Christiansen, Daily Telegraph
  • Rady restores the Habsburgs to the heart of European history ... An enjoyable, clever and colourful introduction to the subject, with plenty of memorable details.

    Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times
  • The Habsburgs are a writer's gift, offering a regal cast of mad, colourful and deeply flawed characters ... Rady's sparkling study is certainly a good place to start.

    Mark Mazower, Financial Times
  • This volume takes it all in. That Mr. Rady can, in under 350 pages, cover everything from the division of the family's lands in the Swiss Argau in 990 to the surrender of power in 1918 by Charles, the last Habsburg monarch, without sacrificing essential details or losing the reader's attention, is a feat of both scholarship and storytelling.

    A. Wess Mitchell, Wall Street Journal
  • An ambitious, wide-ranging, briskly written narrative that crams a vast amount of often surprising information into twenty-nine dense but very readable chapters.

    Ritchie Robertson, Times Literary Supplement
  • Lucid and entertaining ... Rady is as good on the Habsburgs' artistic and cultural legacy as he is on the politics.

    David Crane, The Spectator
  • This panoramic account manages to make more sense of the European dynasty than its rulers often did.

    John Gallagher, The Guardian

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