Sunday, October 3, 2021

Review of Alexander the Great: A Life From Beginning to End by Henry Freeman

This book review is written by Eugene Kernes

Book can be found in:
Genre = History, Empires
Intriguing Connections = 1) Biographies: Auto, Memoir, and Other Types

Short Description

Elaborate Description


Horses were prized in Macedonia.  As Alexander, son of King Philip II, was able to master and tame a wild horse that others could not, it became a sign of future greatness.  Alexander was taught physical skills early on, along with intellectual ability.  The tutor for the mind was an Athenian exile, Aristotle.  Although with proven skill and gaining much favor from Philip, when Philip wanted a new wife with better lineage, Philip disowned Alexander.  But this was not Philip’s sole mistake in relationships, of which many mistakes conspired to assassinate him.  Leaving Alexander in charge.  Rather than dealing with internal matters, Alexander took the army and conquered a large stretch of the world in a short time.  Many areas chose to accept his rule rather than fight.  

Geopolitics was important in Macedonia as local rulers had a lot of power and often tried to retain it or gain more.  Alexander needed to either suppress the rebellions and manage them.  During the conquests, Alexander earned the support of allies, and utilized impressive strategies during the battles.   


The focus is on the book is on how Alexander got his power.  There is very little background information on Macedonia and the surrounding regions.  Very little cultural references, and political contexts.  A short biography that can help get a reader started in learning about Macedonia and Alexander the Great, but does not get very far in either.  

Questions to Consider while Reading the Book

•What is the raison d’etre of the book?  For what purpose did the author write the book?
•How did Alexander master his horse?
•Why did King Philip II disown Alexander?
•How did Alexander become the leader?
•What strategies were used in the battles?
•What was the political context in Macedonia?
•How did Alexander conquer a large area of the known world?

Book Details
Edition ISBN:  2940153325156
Pages to read:   32
Publication:     2016
1st Edition:      2016
Format:           eBook

Ratings out of 5:
Readability    5
Content          1
Overall           2