Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Daughter Of Time by Josephine Tey

This was one of Jackie's first books in her MALS course at U of M. It's a British detective story (sort of) written in 1951. The reason it was a course book and also the reason I'm recommending it is it looks at the story of Richard III and comes to the conclusion that "history (as it's taught in schools) is bunk" (Henry Ford).

The story itself is an easy read and fascinating. A detective is laid up in the hospital for weeks with a broken leg (how's that for a difference from today's health practice!). To pass the time friends bring pictures for him to look at and the one of Richard III looks nothing like the ogre painted in the history books, according to the detective's instincts for faces and guilt. With help from his friends, he digs into the story and comes to a much different conclusion than is painted in the Shakespearean play and elsewhere. That those plays and histories were written during the Tudor dynasty has a lot to do with the outcome.

This is a quick read, interesting history and an engaging story. Good beach reading and a mind expander when it comes to looking at history as it's been fed to us.

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