The Three Emperors: Three Cousins, Three Empires and the Road to World War One (Paperback)Miranda Carter (author)
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The Three Emperors by Miranda Carter is the juicy, funny story of the three dysfunctional rulers of Germany, Russia and Great Britain at the turn of the last century, combined with a study of the larger forces around them.
Three cousins. Three Emperors. And the road to ruin.
As cousins, George V, Kaiser Wilhelm II and the last Tsar Nicholas II should have been friends - but they happened also to rule Europe's three most powerful states. This potent combination together with their own destructive personalities - petty, insecure, bullying, absurdly obsessive (stamp collecting, uniforms) - led not only to their own dramatic fallouts and falls from grace, but also to the outbreak of the First World War.
Miranda Carter's riveting account of how three men who should have known better helped bring down an entire world is a gripping story of abdication, betrayal and murder.
'Fascinating. A wonderfully fresh and beautifully choreographed work of history' Mail on Sunday
'Miranda Carter's story is full of vivid quotations...a romp though the palaces of Europe in their last decades before Armageddon' Sunday Times
'Fascinating. Carter is a gifted storyteller and has written a very readable account' Independent
'That these three absurd men could ever have held the fate of Europe in their hands is a fact as hilarious as it is terrifying. I haven't enjoyed a historical biography this much since Lytton Strachey's Victoria' Zadie Smith
Miranda Carter's first book, Anthony Blunt: His Lives, won the Royal Society of Literature Award and the Orwell Prize and was shortlisted for the Whitbread Biography Prize, the Guardian First Book Award, the Duff Cooper Prize and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. The book was named as one of the New York Times Book Review's seven best books of 2002. Miranda lives in London with her husband and two sons.
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Number of pages: 624
Weight: 426 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 38 mm
Carter draws masterful portraits of her subjects and tells the complicated story of Europe's failing international relations well...a highly readable and well-documented account * Spectator *
Absorbing. Carter has a good eye for a quote and an ability to bring various personalities to life. A convincing and considerable achievement -- Sarah Bradford * Literary Review *
Carter's account of how an already dysfunctional family turned toxic is fresh and enjoyable...timely and welcome * Guardian *
Miranda Carter's story is full of vivid quotations...a romp though the palaces of Europe in their last decades before Armageddon * Sunday Times *
Well-paced, a thoroughly polished, professional piece of work. A macabre family saga -- A. N. Wilson * Evening Standard *
An entertaining study of power and personality portrays the strutting absurdity and grotesque glamour of the last emperors on the eve of catastrophe -- Simon Sebag Montefiore * Financial Times *
Fascinating. Carter is a gifted storyteller and has written a very readable account* Independent *
Carter's intelligent, entertainging and informative book folds dynastic and political narratives into a panoramic account of Europe's road to war * London Review of Books *
In her group biography of three monarchs, Carter has succeeded in painting their personalities in vivid colours...she brings an excellent biographer's eye for the telling detail...the great appeal of this book lies in it narration and comparative analysis of the life and personality of her imperial subjects...well-researched and expertly written...an engaging and remarkably even-handed portrayal * The Times Literary Supplement *
That these three absurd men could ever have held the fate of Europe in their hands is a fact as hilarious as it is terrifying. I haven't enjoyed a historical biography this much since Lytton Strachey's Victoria -- Zadie Smith
Miranda Carter writes with lusty humour, has a fresh clarifying intelligence, and a sharp eye for telling details. This is traditional narrative history with a 21st-century zing. A real corker of a book* History Today *
A highly original way of looking at the years that led up to 1914 -- Antonia Fraser * Sunday Telegraph Books of the Year *
Carter deftly interpolates history with psychobiography to provide a damning indictment of monarchy in all its forms -- Will Self * New Statesmen Books of the Year *
A depiction of bloated power and outsize personalities in which Carter picks apart the strutting absurdity of the last emperors on the eve of catastrophe * Financial Times Books of the Year *
Takes what should have been a daunting subject and through sheer wit and narrative elan turns it into engaging drama. Carter has a notable gift for characterisation -- Jonathan Coe * Guardian Books of the Year *