review The Watchers A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth I 103

characters The Watchers A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth I

review The Watchers A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth I 103 Ø ❮PDF / Epub❯ ★ The Watchers A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth I Author Stephen Alford – In a Europe aflame with wars of religion and dynastic conflicts Elizabeth I came to the throne of a realmRom the shadows In his company we follow Her Majesty's agents through the streets of London and Rome and into the dank cells of the Tower We see the world as they saw it ever unsure who could be trusted or when the fatal knock on their own door might come The Watchers is a riveting exploration of loyalty faith betrayal and deception with the highest possible stakes in a world poised between the Middle Ages and modernit. This is a gossipy romp through Elizabethan spying The best part of the book is in the very beginning when the author describes a scenario where Elizabeth is assassinated and what might have happened as a result This is the terror the government lived with The fear that her spymasters felt becomes palpable and as a result I had a very good sense of why they acted as they did The book needs editing It's redundant in many places repeating information about individuals plots and basic history I am fine if say information is repeated from one chapter to the next but not from page to page or within the same chapter This is my main gripe with the book because of all the sins for an author to commit wasting my time is the absolute worst Rereading the same tidbits over and over again makes me stabbyIt reads as if it's cobbled together from lectures This isn't necessarily a bad thing but to a minister's daughter who grew up with sermons delivered with the slightly dramatic cadence of a university lecture it was as if my father were reading the book to me I doubt that's going to be an issue for most readers but it was definitely odd In reality I'd give this book 35 stars I'd subtract one for the redundancies and one half for the somewhat haphazard organization

Stephen Alford ☆ 3 summary

A Secret PDFEPUB #189 In a Europe aflame with wars of religion and dynastic The Watchers PDFEPUB or conflicts Elizabeth I came to the throne of a realm encircled Watchers A Secret Epub #222 by menace To the great Catholic powers of France and Spain Watchers A Secret History of PDF England was a heretic pariah state a canker to be cut away for the health of the greater body of Christendom Elizabeth's government defendin. Elizabeth I reigned for a total of 45 years in England and the stability she gave as head of state gave us the Golden Age of wealth and greater self assurance as a nation The final Tudor monarch saw a cultural advances too this being the time of Shakespeare and military confidence on the high seas However the Europeans saw her very differently; as daughter of Anne Boylen Henry VIII's second wife she was considered a bastard and Protestant heretic by catholic Europe Following her denouncement by the Pope various European rulers prepared plans to dispose her replacing her with Mary The event that most people are aware of is the almost invasion by The Spanish Armada but throughout her reign she was protected by a team of loyal subjectsThese men were a motley bunch of ambassadors codebreakers and confidence men and spies who used all sort of covert and overt methods to counter the catholic threat Infiltrators were sent to the continent to ingratiate themselves with the church uncovering conspiracies both real and imagined identified and followed gentlemen who were plotting the overthrow of their ueen The network tracked priests entering the country under cover intercepted and deciphered almost all correspondence between suspects in England and their contacts in France Spain and Italy and neutered the threat that hung over the crownDrawing on documents from archive and collections Alford shines a light into this dark and shadowy time of history The narrative details tense searches across the countryside looking for specific people who were perceived to be a threat to the crown Traitors who were convicted sometimes only on hearsay and confessions uttered under torture on the rack were condemned in horrific ways to die It is an interesting account of those involved in keeping their monarch safe from all the assassination attempts and plots but at times was fairly complicated as he details all the people involved in these plots Worth reading though for those that like their Tudor history

summary ´ eBook or Kindle ePUB ☆ Stephen Alford

The Watchers A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth IG God's true Church of England and its leader the ueen could stop at nothing to defend itselfHeaded by the brilliant enigmatic and widely feared Sir Francis Walsingham the Elizabethan state deployed every dark art spies double agents cryptography and torture Delving deeply into sixteenth century archives Stephen Alford offers a groundbreaking chillingly vivid depiction of Elizabethan espionage literally recovering it f. I really enjoyed this book The subtitle is a secret history of the reign of Elizabeth I but I feel that doesn't actually explain just what an insightful but accessible book this one is It includes some really fascinating details on spies and spying in Elizabethan Europe but it also describes the state of almost perpetual paranoia during a period of history which Hollywood likes to glamorize as the golden age of monarchy It wasn't a golden age Elizabeth maintained a dazzling but strict distance from the majority of her advisors and from the plebs which made her appear all the awe inspiring and she was definitely an extremely intelligent astute and ruthless individual who aimed to find outcomes to the issues of the day which put her in the best possible position with little effort on her behalf which I can only admire but for me the real heroes appear to be the astonishingly clever worldly and subtle administrators They worked to protect the aura of majesty around the ueen and keep safe both her and the hard won religious freedom of an England surrounded by Catholics The Great Armada was not the climax in English Spanish military history I was taught at school but simply one battle in a long cold war which occasionally boiled over and was only extinguished when James Stuart came to the throne complete with his ready made heirs and finally resolved the agonies of the Tudor succession well for a generation or two at least This almost obsessive passion for maintaining the Protestant religious freedom of England was something which James II the grandson of James Stuart nor Charles I to a lesser extent never understood but which Charles II understood to his bonesI understand the religious history of the age at least to a certain extent but this book brought it alive for me Think of a relatively minor new religion or cult today and imagine that a president or prime minister decides that for their own expediency this new religion is going to be what everyone in that country must follow Now imagine after a bloody tussle of a few decades of back and forth all the non believers are essentially persecuted into exile Some of them will decide to make their homes where they land but others will do all they can to go home on their own terms whilst maintaining loyalty to the government and others will do all they can to destroy the government in the name of the old religion Other countries see this an opportunity to invade and take the heretic country for themselves it's not particularly wealthy but its geographic location makes it important for trade and it has been supporting insurgentsterrorists overseas for years and they spend money and time and decades trying to do so That is the picture of Elizabethan Europe you get from this bookThis book is also interesting for its descriptions of how espionage was actually physically carried out in the 16th century It surprised me how much is resembled modern espionage It relied upon having well placed non descript individuals either motivated by overwhelming loyalty or vast wads of money or threatened into spying They wrote their reports encrypted them and shipped them to their handlers who then pieced them together to try and form an accurate picture of threats so they could device counterpolicy Essentially what happens nowGreat book I could go on for ever about how much I got out of it 5 stars It was amazing