City of Fortune
City of Fortune: How Venice won and lost a naval empire
‘Roger Crowley chronicles the peak of Venice's past glory with Wordsworthian sympathy, supplemented by impressive learning and infectious enthusiasm.’
William McNeill, The Wall Street Journal
'Crowley...writes with a racy briskness that lifts sea battles and sieges off the page, so much so that at times his sentences seem in danger of bursting their seams.' New York Times
'Venice receives a stirring account from British historian Crowley…An action-packed political and military history.'
'A rousing, traditional account that emphasizes politics, war, and great men.'
'Roger Crowley makes a trustworthy and wonderfully eloquent guide ... Crowley is such a natural narrative historian, with such an eye for colourful but telling details and such a knack for dramatic character sketches, that he remains a constant joy to read.'
Christopher Hart, Sunday Times
'The rise and fall of Venice's empire is an irresistible story and Crowley, with his rousing descriptive gifts and scholarly attention to detail, is its perfect chronicler. For centuries, he notes, the republic's sailors returned home with "gold, spices, plague and grief" and in this compelling book, like a scrupulous Venetian merchant, he weighs out full measures of each.'
Michael Prodger, Financial Times
'This book affords a perfect account of its subject. In terms of pace, colour and fluency, Roger Crowley's style is flawless, matched by his complete grasp of the motives - mercantile, political, and ideological - driving Venetians across the increasingly tricky Mediterranean waters.'
Jonathan Keates, The Literary Review.
'Crowley is a wonderfully lucid and enchanting writer who shines at siege warfare and combat operations but he is equally skilled in expressing the essence of Venetian economic power.'
Christopher Silvester, The Daily Express
'Roger Crowley's hugely readable, well-written and informative book - take it there with you this summer! - explains how the Venetian Republic grabbed the riches that built it.'
Stella Tillyard, The Daily Telegraph
'This highly readable account of the city...it entertains as much as it informs – ideal holiday reading on a Mediterranean cruise.'
John Ure, Country Life