Laura Foreman Alexander: The Conqueror

ISBN 13: 9780306812934

Alexander: The Conqueror

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No individual has made his mark on the world more profoundly than Alexander the Great, the young man who, through war, diplomacy, and Machiavellian means, expanded his empire to include most of the known world--all before he died at age thirty-three. A remarkable man whose path crossed with some of the most influential people, places, and events of all time, Alexander began his combat training at age seven, studied philosophy with Aristotle at age thirteen, kept a copy of Homer's Iliad under his pillow until his death, and introduced Greek and oriental cultural influences throughout his vast empire. Alexander: The Conqueror follows the progression of his conquests through the Near East and Central Asia to the Indus Valley, and introduces Alexander's family, the personalities of his generals, and the cultures of the lands he conquered. Author Laura Foreman examines the complex character of Alexander as student, friend, lover, military genius, and emperor, and explores the many unsolved mysteries surrounding his life: Who did Alexander turn to in passion and for comfort? Was Alexander a careful, amiable mastermind or a drunken brute? Could Alexander have been responsible for his father's murder?Gorgeous landscape photography, numerous images of ancient art and artifacts, and informative, beautifully crafted maps complement the narrative, offering a visual feast along with a lively, insightful narrative of Alexander's life of conquest and intrigue.

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About the Author:

Laura Foreman is the author and editor of more than forty books, including the acclaimed Cleopatra's Palace and Napoleon's Lost Fleet . She has worked successively as a reporter, feature writer, and editor for the AP and UPI, the New York Times , and the Philadelphia Inquirer .

From Publishers Weekly:

Alexander the Great studied philosophy with Aristotle, became king when he was 20, defeated the undefeatable Persian empire five years later and, by the time of his death at age 32, had explored and claimed "the boundaries of the known world." Perhaps history’s most powerful and revered military leader, the Macedonian king receives more royal praise in this new biography by Foreman (Cleopatra’s Palace and Napoleon’s Lost Fleet). Given that existing historical sources on Alexander come several hundred years after his death, and that there is "poor evidence documenting" Alexander’s life, Foreman reasonably extrapolates on the available facts. She begins with the political upheaval and omens surrounding his birth, the rivalries and alliances within his family and his precocious boyhood, during which he cultivated a love affair with Homer’s Iliad as well as with the "sword, javelin and bow." In his ensuing years, Alexander is portrayed as being prone to bouts of aloofness, drunkenness and murderous vengeance; at the same time, he displays more superhuman behavior, manhandling the Oracle at Delphi and slashing the Gordian Knot ("What difference does it make how I loose it?"). Yet the bulk of the text is devoted to what the conqueror did best—conquering. Foreman’s well-written narrative follows Alexander’s trek through the Near East and Central Asia, giving the reader a play-by-play account of his battles, victories, strategies and military brilliance. Generously interspersed with impressive color photos of maps, art and ancient artifacts, the book is a fun read for those who aren’t bent upon serious scholarship.
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