Monday, November 4, 2013

Review: The Renaissance: The Best One-Hour History by Robert Freeman

Title: The Renaissance: The Best One-Hour History
Author: Robert Freeman
Publication: September 26th 2013 by Kendall Lane Publishers 
Genre: Non-Fiction
Format: e-book from NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository
Cover Rating: 5/5
Overall Rating: 5/5

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Renaissance occurred when Europe awoke from a thousand-year slumber. It rediscovered its classical roots in Greece and Rome. This book explains this startling "rebirth," beginning with its origins in the breakdown of the Middle Ages. It examines exemplars in arts and letters, and the wholly new institutions that emerged. Finally, it considers the critical questions of why these events occurred where and when they did.

This book is also available on Kindle and will soon be in audio format as well.

The Best One-Hour History series is for those who want a quick but coherent overview of major historical events. It will also serve those who need a competent high-level introduction before going further. Each of the 20 books in the series provides a clear, concise and compelling account of the episode under discussion. In about an hour, the reader will obtain a satisfying understanding of why each subject holds iconic status in Western Civilization.

~My Thoughts:

(sorry that the review is so short but that's usually the case about non-fiction books with me. This doesn't mean I didn't enjoy it immensely.)

I don't read a lot of non-fiction books but when I do it's usually about Ancient Egypt or Ancient Greece. That kind of stuff. But I've also always been vastly interested in the Renaissance, so when I saw The Renaissance: The Best One-Hour History on NetGalley I requested it immediately because lately I've been into history mood, watching a lot documentaries and wanting to read about it, too. Unfortunately good, quick, non-fictions like this book are hard to find but I plan on reading more of these On-Hour History things. Love it!

So one of the great things about The Renaissance: The Best One-Hour History is that (obviously) it can be read in one hour. I think it didn't even took me that long to read. So it's pretty quick but it summed up all about the Renaissance perfectly. I got a lot of information about it. Some I knew, some I didn't and I absorbed it all, at some times even surprised by how really interested I was in it all. Like I said normally I go for the time that went before the Renaissance but if we talk art wise than it's my favorite. I also loved how the Dark Ages were really dark in the meaning of not really evolving because of the Church and how in the Renaissance people were more open in the way they thought, the way art blossomed and how the first books got printed.

All in all, I loved this book. It was written in a way that wasn't going to slow or too fast. It was just right. A lot of interesting facts + this awesome timeline at the end. A quick, fascination, non-fiction that will interest anyone who is intrigued by all things about the Renaissance. 

Favorite Quotes:
Civilizations are born. Civilizations die. And sometimes─very rarely─they go to sleep and then reawaken.
Indeed, that is what "renaissance" means: "Rebirth."
Humanism captured the imagination of Petrarch's city of Florence and quickly spread through the rest of northern Italy and eventually to all of the learned circles in Europe. It was especially influential in France, the Dutch and Flemish Low Countries, and in England. It affected art, sculpture, architecture, literature, law, theology, indeed, the entire intellectual edifice of European life.
God created man last, said Mirandolla, so that man could contemplate all the rest of God's creation and revel in its beauty.

About The Author:
Robert Freeman teaches the Modern European History AP course at Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California. His classes are among the highest performing in the nation on the annual College Board Advanced Placement Examination in Modern European History. >br/>
He is formerly Vice President of International Marketing at Sybase and the founder of the national non-profit, One Dollar For Life. He holds a B.S. Degree in Economics from Santa Clara University and an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.

Twitter | Website

Renaissance art mentioned in the book:

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