Monday, June 26, 2006


Finished Warren Carroll's "Revolution Against Christendom" (Volume V in the History of Christendom serires) this morning. It is the shortest so far in the series. It covers Louis XIV of France ('the Sun King') through Napolean's fall at Waterloo. And, except for some brief interludes about America and England, rarely leaves France. The lion's share of the book is split between the French Revolution and Napoleon.

My overall take.... First: If you want to read about the French Revolution, I can't recommend more highly Warren Carroll's "The Guillotine and the Cross". His treatment of the French Revolution in this current volume is mostly taken-in abridged form-from the "The Guillotine..."

Secondly, his treatment of Napoleon is somewhat confusing. Many times he gets ahead of himself with references to what is going to happen, but doesn't always explain what is happening now (in the narrative). For example, it was unclear to me when and how Napolean came to power. This volume (more than the others) seems to be more of a military history of the period covered than a general history.

I am glad I read the book and own it, but it is clearly inferior to the other volumes in the work. Of course, it is a miracle that it was published at all as Dr. Carroll has suffered with poor health the last few years.

One more volume remains-and I look forward to it.

I am a great fan of Warren Carroll. It pains me a great deal to give anything but a stellar review, but it is what it is. He still remains my favorite historian and author.

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