In the Crossroads of World History series comes this closely written book about the conquest of England. Rather than setting out with the Battle of Hastings in 1066, the author takes every pain to describe the events that led up to it: the Norse invasions of Normandy, the Norse and Danish incursions of England which affected its life and government long before William the Conqueror made his way across the Channel. It is a story dense with names and the exploits of conflict, from the time of Marching Rolf who took over Normandy to that of William, who defeated Harold Godwineson to attain the English throne. Mr. Linklater employs a strictly narrative style with little reference to documents, yet it is apparent from the richness of material and his definite handling of it that he has done a formidable research job. He makes a case for William's right to the throne (Edward the Confessor named him his heir if not his successor) and for his achievements in transforming England into an ordered feudal nation. Eric Linklater writes with a mailed fist and at a hard, fast pace.