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Legend and lore surround the history of kings Richard and John, from the ballads of Robin Hood and the novels of Sir Walter Scott to Hollywood movies. Frank McLynn has returned to the original sources to discover what Richard and John, the warring sons of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, were really like, and how their history measures up to the old legends. “With narrative panache and anecdotal detail” (The Independent), McLynn explores the truth behind the early folklore tradition, confirming that “Richard was everything you’d hoped for, and his brother John was the toad you’d always suspected.”

This is history at its best-a story well-told, thoroughly researched, unexpectedly revealing, and “a rattling good read” (Spectator).

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