Richard III: Loyalty Binds Me

By Matthew Lewis

A comprehensive, detailed and most interesting biography of this most maligned King, packed with detail, setting out the facts of Richard’s life and examining all the situations he was faced with from a sensitive, yet factual viewpoint, avoiding personal bias so prevalent in other author’s recent works. A refreshingly pro-Ricardian portrait of great depth and research, complemented by an excellent selection of colour photographs and copious notes. This is the biography of Richard III that should become standard reading for all, who wish to read a non-biased, well researched account, without the usual Tudor partiality we have all been indoctrinated with.

 

Front cover of a book: Richard III by Matthew Lewis

Richard III

By David Baldwin

This book is a very readable life of Richard III aiming to show what he was really like. It is based on an in-depth study of the sources, summarising the available evidence to give a believable picture of a man driven by circumstances, a complex man neither wholly a villain nor a hero.

Front cover of book: Richard III by David Baldwin

Richard III: The Young King to Be

By Josephine Wilkinson

This is a serious read of just under under 300 pages ending with an evisceration of the traditional sources on Richard which have coloured the perception of his reputation till recently.
To understand the man who became King it is necessary to know his backstory and this book provides us with a comprehensive picture of a complex character from birth up to the mid-1470s.
The piety of Richard receives much attention as do the extremes of fortune in his life, surrounded by violence from an early age, forced into exile, taking a leading role in the Battle of Barnet aged 19 to regain the throne for his brother Edward followed by disillusionment with his brother’s foreign and domestic policies.
The narrative flows so well: this is an enjoyable introduction to real historical analysis.

Front cover of a book: Richard The Young King to Be by Josephine Wilkinson

The King's Grave: The Search for Richard III

By Philippa Langley

This is both an extraordinary portrait of the last Plantagenet monarch and the inspiring story of the search and archaeological dig that finally brought the real King Richard to the light of day.

Philippa Langley’s inspired intuition, based on the work of Historian colleagues, together with her indefatigable perseverance against the odds, led to a world-famous discovery. Philippa tells the story in her own words with beautiful fluency. Chapters by Michael Jones alternate and tell the historical background.

Overall an enthralling account which leaves one full of admiration for the long search and hard work which eventually led to the successful outcome and a place in History.

Front cover of a book: The Search for Richard III The King's Grave by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones

The Last Days of Richard III

By John Ashdown-Hill

John Ashdown-Hill writes from the perspective of Richard himself to take us through his last 150 days of life up to Bosworth.

The second half of the book describes what can be surmised of the post-mortem treatment of Richard’s body and, most importantly, exactly where it may have lain for five hundred years before its rediscovery. All the more remarkable is that this book was written before the site of the grave was found under the car park as predicted by the author.

The matrilineal line from Richard’s sister, Anne of York to a 20th century descendent is discussed in detail by means of which a comparison of DNA samples confirmed that the skeleton was indeed that of Richard III.

An easy and compelling read.

Front cover of a book: The Last Days of Richard III and the fate of his DNA by John Ashdown-Hill

The Mythology of the Princes in the Tower

By John Ashdown-Hill

When did the term “Princes in the Tower” come into usage, who invented it, and to whom did it refer? To the general public the term is synonymous with the boy King Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, sons of Edward IV. Is this correct? Were those boys genuinely held against their will in the Tower? Would their mother, Elizabeth Widville, have released her young son Richard from sanctuary with her if she believed she would be putting his life in danger? By working exclusively with his own team of geneticists and exploring the mtDNA haplogroup of the living all-female-line collateral descendant of Edward V and his brother Richard, who has now been traced, John Ashdown-Hill answers these questions and more.

Front cover of a book: The Mythology of the Princes in the Tower by John Ashdown-Hill

The Survival of the Princes in the Tower

By Matthew Lewis

Matthew Lewis is a prolific author about 15th century history and here he addresses one of history’s most famous cold cases. After examining and discounting, the known evidence for the alleged murder and burial of the two Princes he then turns to the possibility that they survived the crises of 1483 and were spirited abroad for their own safety. He makes a plausible and persuasive case which today is being actively investigated further by the Missing Princes Project.

A fascinating read.

Front cover of a book: The Survival of the Princes in the Tower by Matthew Lewis

Blood Sisters: the women behind the Wars of the Roses

By Sarah Gristwood

Gristwood provides an excellently balanced account of much debated issues while keeping the narrative accessible and entertaining. This is the book I’m recommending to friends who want to know what really happened to ‘The White Queen’ and her rivals.  (J L Laynesmith)

Front cover of a book: Blood Sisters by Sarah Gristwood

Richard III A Small Guide to the Great Debate

By Annette Carson

Annette Carson is a serious Historian and a member of the Richard III Society. In this short book of under 100 pages she provides an authoritative introduction to the main controversies of his reign. Did he steal the throne from his nephews and then have them killed?

Once Shakespeare’s work of art has been discounted as fiction rather than history, contemporary sources are discussed to evaluate the evidence for a range of possibilities. The lack of reliable, direct written evidence requires the analysis of circumstantial evidence: how did relatives and others close to Richard behave? Are the bones in Westminster Abbey really those of the two Princes? Did Richard instead arrange for his nephews to go into hiding? We still do not know after 500 years what really happened to them.

This book is an excellent starting point for those who wish to explore this mystery for themselves.

 

Front cover of a book: Richard III A Small Guide to the Great Debate by Annette Carson

The Sunne in Splendour

By Sharon Penman

Richard Plantagenet is only 7 years old when this novel begins. Many pages later, he has died in battle and those who loved him are left to mourn. In this long novel we get to know Richard III but also the people around him such as his adored older brothers, Edward and Edmund. As he grows up, he makes friends, some who remain loyal and others who do not. He finds love but also great sorrow. The book was written before the discovery of his remains but the latest edition includes an Author’s Note about Philippa Langley’s search for his grave.

Front cover of a book: The Sunne in Splendour by Sharon Penman