From James' list on Irish history and different aspects of it.
It may seem strange to include a selection here that does not mention Ireland once, but the Norman incursion that began in 1167 is fundamental to understanding the country's ensuing history. The first Normans in Ireland were vagabonds, for the most part, a restless, grasping underclass of the French-speaking wave of freebooters that subdued England beginning in 1066 with William the Conqueror. Denied an outlet for their limitless ambition, these often renegade adventurers, many of whom were younger sons or rebellious underlings of the ruling Norman caste, unleashed chaos in Celtic kingdoms they invaded, both militarily and socially, often in escapades of unimaginable daring. Douglas does an excellent job introducing and explaining the unique character of these intrepid soldiers and administrators, as they tramped through much of the known European world, and then on to Jerusalem for the Crusades.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
The Norman achievement, 1050-1100