The Establishment of the European Hegemony, 1415-1715: Trade and Exploration in the Age of the Renaissance
Why this book?
His most widely read book is The Age of Reconnaissance: Discovery, Exploration, and Settlement, 1450-1650. But despite its clunky title, Establishment is my favorite because it distills the whole story – its events, its technology, its intellectual foundations – into almost crystalline form. A wonderful place to begin, or to return to and consolidate whatever else you’ve learned.