I wasn’t going to write a review for this because under the new format the review would be almost as long as the book. There is SO MUCH information here. This is very similar to Absolute Monarchy: The History of the Papacy in that it’s an overview of a topic that covers an extremely huge portion of history, so if you actually want to get a full and deep understanding of any of it, good luck. If however you’re in a rush to get to the other books in your pile, and you want an overview similar to reading a pile of articles on Wikipedia (though far better written), this is a book for you. I can’t say anything bad about it as it isn’t actually dry at all, it’s well-researched and full of contemporary pictures, and is exactly what it sets out to be. This is not however a book to learn from unless your mind is like a computer and this is serving you as an introduction to the subject matter. I would recommend this almost as more of a reference than a cover-to-cover read. I can’t say that because I don’t feel I learned anything this is any fault of the book. The project is just too ambitious. No matter how well written, a book covering so much could never be that in-depth unless it was upsettingly long, and as everyone knows, I personally don’t understand politics anyway. There are too many people involved with strange and complicated family trees and multiple changing titles to remember as it is without going over all the key players in a span of a thousand years. Despite this, I found this an enjoyable read, because I’m a nerd. Maybe you will too. If you’re a fan of history at all, give it a try.