Monday, November 6, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday!

It's Tuesday, and time for another TTT that I can participate in! Thanks as always to The Broke and the Bookish for hosting this weekly feature.

This week's topic is "Ten Characters Who Would Make Good Leaders". It is pretty open-ended, as it is up to each individual blogger just exactly who or what those characters might be leading. Given my non-fiction tendencies, my list will be about those who I consider to have been good leaders. This doesn't mean they were always great people because most of them weren't. However, I am looking at them from the perspective of a leader as someone who lead or could have lead their country in some way. Whether that means they were leading their countrymen on Crusade, or leading the government and officials against a wayward son trying to steal his brother's throne, all lead at some point in their lives.

Here they are, in no particular order. I have also chosen to say relatively little about them, compared to my normal novellas. I'd like their names to simply (mostly) speak for themselves.

1. Eleanor of Aquitaine
(General bad-ass. Got shit done while Richard was in the Holy Land. Continued to get shit done when he was captured, when he returned home, when he died, and when John inherited the throne.)

2. Boudica, Boudicca, Boudicea, Bouddica
(Girl was FIERCE. Commanded an army in the tens of thousands, though Roman estimates put that number beyond 200,000. Avenged the rape of her daughters and her own public humiliation by slaughtering a bunch of Romans.)

2. William Marshal
(Served the first five Plantagenet kings: Henry II, Henry the Young King, Richard, John, and Henry III. Lead troops into battle into his late 60s.)

3. Harold Godwinson
(Last true Anglo-Saxon king. Sorry Edgar. If only he had waited for reinforcements instead of immediately marching to Hastings from Stanford.)

4. Alfred the Great
(The man who paved the way for England to become united under his grandson Athelstan. He was able to repel the Danes time and again, and lay the groundwork for the future kings.)

5. Henry II
(I mean, whatever. He was only one of England's greatest kings, even though he was a lousy husband.)

6. Richard I and Saladin
(Had to put these two together, because I feel like they really brought out the best in one another. And by best I mean who could be the most slaughter-y. They sent each other gifts throughout their battles, though they never met in person.)

Happy Reading!


  1. Just found your blog via Broke and Bookish, and I look forward to your future posts. Glad to see someone else remembers Godwinson!

    1. Hi Stephen, I am glad you found my blog! I have a soft spot in my heart for Harold, who I consider the rightful king. But without William the Bastard, they may have been no Plantagenet dynasty, so...I'm torn.

      I love the Anglo-Saxon period and read a great book last year called 1066 Turned Upside Down, which contained several short stories of alternative history - different outcomes that could have occurred in that year. It's a great read, thanks for stopping by!

    2. And you call him William the Bastard! :-D Have you read Peter Rex's books, by chance? He focuses on pre-Norman England. He's a little dry, though. Thanks for mentioning that alt-history take on 1066...hadn't heard of it!

    3. I've got all his books on my TBR list. Amberley Publishing (out of the UK) has great sales every few months with the entire site being 25% off. It's a flat rate of $15 to ship to the US so I always stock up and they have quite a few of his books. I ordered a couple in their end of summer sale, and then just now they had the sale again in October, so I have more coming soon.

      I abhor William, and while I generally do not read historical fiction, I made the exception for this book because it looked at a lot of different ways William could have failed. One of the authors, G.K. Holloway, wrote a novel I enjoyed called '1066: What Fates Impose" and had a story in the other 1066 book I mentioned. Here is the review I wrote if that helps:

      I highly recommend the book. The stories ranged from legit possible to extremely fanciful and I enjoyed them all.

  2. Eleanor of Aquitaine must have been truly fascinating. And William Marshall must have been quite the dude too.

    1. She was! In all my research, every time I think I know everything there is to possibly know about her, I find something new. Especially since I have finally gotten hold of some great articles from the Journal of Medieval History. If you are interested in learning more about Marshal, Thomas Asbridge wrote a great book called 'The Greatest Knight'. I have seen in twice on Amazon for $1.99 in the last couple months, keep an eye out for it. He was quite remarkable.

  3. Replies
    1. Yes! I am writing a book about her right now. She is easily my favorite historical figure and there's so much we don't know. I need someone to build a functioning time machine, ASAP.

  4. Replies
    1. It's pretty much all I read! I am partial to UK history, but I'll try anything that looks good.

  5. If nothing else, your post makes me want to learn more about some of these people.

    Have a great week. - Katie


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