28 September 2023
Discover who we are and how we got here in comedian, star of Peep Show and student of history David Mitchell's UNRULY: A History of England's Kings and Queens - a thoughtful, funny exploration of the founding fathers and mothers of England, and subsequently Britain. 'JUST FANTASTIC. DELIGHTFULLY CONTRARY AND HILARIOUSLY CANTANKEROUS.
VERY, VERY FUNNY' JESSE ARMSTRONG, CREATOR OF SUCCESSION AND PEEP SHOW'CLEVER, AMUSING, GLORIOUSLY BIZARRE AND RAZOR SHARP. MITCHELL - A FUNNY MAN AND A SKILLED HISTORIAN - TELLS STORIES THAT ARE INTERESTING AND FUN. HERE IS HORRIBLE HISTORIES FOR GROWNUPS' GERARD DEGROOT, THE TIMES'CLEVER, FUNNY, MAKES YOU THINK QUITE DIFFERENTLY ABOUT HISTORY' DAN SNOW, HISTORIAN AND BROADCASTER--------Think you know your kings and queens? Think again.
In UNRULY, David Mitchell explores how England's monarchs, while acting as feared rulers firmly guiding their subjects' destinies, were in reality a bunch of lucky sods who were mostly as silly and weird in real life as they appear today in their portraits. Taking us right back to King Arthur (spoiler: he didn't exist), David tells the founding story of post-Roman England right up to the reign of Elizabeth I (spoiler: she dies). It's a tale of narcissists, inadequate self-control, excessive beheadings, middle-management insurrection, uncivil wars, and at least one total Cnut, as the population evolved from having their crops nicked by the thug with the largest armed gang to bowing and paying taxes to a divinely anointed king.
How this happened, who it happened to and why it matters in modern Britain are all questions David answers with brilliance, wit and the full erudition of a man who once studied history - and won't let it off the hook for the mess it's made. A funny book about a serious subject, UNRULY is for anyone who has ever wondered how we got here - and who is to blame. --------'Mitchell clearly knows his history, with a book that owes as much to Monty Python as it does to Simon Schama' ANDREW MARR, BROADCASTER'I don't think anyone other than David Mitchell could have written this book.
It's clever, funny and makes you think quite differently about history we thought we knew' DAN SNOW, HISTORIAN AND BROADCASTER'Who knew a history of England's rulers could be this hilarious? A brilliantly entertaining romp through monarchs' i'By turns fascinating and funny - there is a jewel of an insight or a refreshing blast of clarifying wit on every page. David brings a delightfully contrary and hilariously cantankerous eye to the history of the English Monarchy. Informative, illuminating and very very funny' JESSE ARMSTRONG, CREATOR OF SUCCESSION AND PEEP SHOW'I can't recommend this book enough.
Very funny and interesting, it is above all a proper work of history' CHARLIE HIGSON