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- Sapiens for big thinking about our place on earth
- The Suspicions of Mr Whicher for the ability to weave fascinating narratives out of wonderful micro research.
- Braudel (as above) for interdisciplinary approaches to history: economics, geography, culture, politics and war. A man who can speculate that the Turks could capture Constantinople and the Arabs couldn’t because the Bactrian camel could cope with the harsh Anatolian climate and the Arabian camel couldn’t, makes fascinating connections.
- There are many different reasons for wanting to write history books. Be clear what yours are.
- Foreign languages are incredibly useful if you want to leave our shores in search of history. Learn as many as you can.
- Look to write the kind of book that you want to read – you are your own ideal reader.