Title: The King Whisperers
"Power Behind the Throne, From Rasputin to Rove"
Author: Kerwin Swint
Publisher: Union Square Press, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co.
ISBN, Pub. Date: 978-1402772016, March 2011
Format: Hard cover with jacket
No. of pps.: 328
Seldom do I review nonfiction, but certain topics are the flint stone to story making, the greatest of these being history, the elemental roots of literary magic in so much of my favorite fiction. In my world, history can make sparks fly so, you'd have seen me waving my hand eagerly in the air like a schoolgirl when Novel Publicity Blog Tours asked for participants to review Kerwin Swint's, The King Whisperers. Though I'm certainly not a schoolgirl anymore, I adore historical facts and any opinion, treatise, viewpoint or art form that stands on them.
The King Whisperers serves as an encyclopedia of political figures all while offering a system of categorizing them into ten different types, certainly no small feat considering these figures range from the ancients to modern day politicians and on every continent. Such a huge undertaking may be criticized for the surface treatment given to each figure, that quantity trumps quality, but it is this very aspect of The King Whisperers that makes it invaluable. How else could one present the totality of political history in one volume of 328 pages than by a method geared to the modern click-switch mentality of 2011? It's a patchwork, if you will, woven beautifully with the common thread of Swint's classification system.
The King Whisperers is an indispensable reference tool to be valued for years to come. Academics, writers and curious minds in general will find the ten classifications of the power players to be a telling lens, a sort of prismatic lodestone through which to reflect upon history, both in our past and in the making. The ten classifications are:
The Machiavellians (ex: Machiavelli, Catherine de Medici, Alexander Hamilton, Dick Cheney)
Empire Builders (ex: Otto von Bismarck, Bernard of Clairvaux)
King Makers (ex: Sir Richard Neville, James "Big Jim" Farley)
Spies (ex: Cardinal Richelieu, Lawrence of Arabia, Omar Suleiman)
Silver-Tongued Devils (ex: Cicero, Talleyrand, Leon Trotsky)
The Generals (Charles Martel, Oliver Cromwell, Hideki Tojo)
The Rebels (ex: Zhou Enlai, Che Guevara, Sakamoto Ryoma)
The Truly Evil (ex: "Young" Joe Stalin and Hermann Goering, Hitler's Right Hand)
The Fixers (ex: Larry O'Brien, Roger Ailes, Karl Rove)
Schemers (ex: Haman the Agagite, Grigori Rasputin)
Even if some of the classifications may provide fodder for debate, The King Whisperers will be a standard to hold onto long after you've finished reading it. If you find that the carpet ride Swint takes you on through history is too fast-paced, not a stitch of it comes without an invitation to delve deeper with a comprehensive set of endnotes, bibliography and index that will keep you in happily-ever-after cross-referencing mode, especially if you are a perpetual student like me...still a school girl at heart.
I highly recommend The King Whisperers and give it four out a possible five magic books!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of the Novel Publicity Blog Tours and a copy was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review nor was there an obligation to write a positive one. All opinions expressed here are entirely mine and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
Please vote for Literary Magic in the traffic-breaker poll for this tour. The blogger with the most votes wins a free promotional twitterview and a special winner’s badge. I want that to be me! You can vote in the poll by visiting the official King Whisperers blog tour page and scrolling all the way to the bottom.
The next word for the book give-away is WEBSITE. Learn more about the give-away and enter to win 1 of 3 copies on the official King Whisperers blog tour page. The other 2 copies are being given-away courtesy of the GoodReads author program, go here to enter. And don’t forget to stop by the Q&A with Kerwin Swint Group to discuss the King Whisperers (including questions from the official book club guide), the author, and his previous works.
Book Trailers for the King Whisperers: