The drama of England gathers momentum in this second volume, as the Tudors take over and the War of the Roses comes to an end with the death of Richard III. Churchill's genius for bringing the complex threads together into a coherent whole is challenged in the immensity of this task -- and he comes through triumphant. While scholars may quibble over his unremitting acceptance of color, pattern and viewpoint as he sees it, the average reader will find it easy to accept this as definitive. The princes were murdered with Richard's connivance; Mary Queen of Scots did conspire with her ministers against the life of Elizabeth; Oliver Cromwell was a cold-blooded though reluctant- dictator; the summons of William of Orange and his wife, Mary, saved England when her liberties, religious and political, were threatened, etc., etc. The sweep of story and history, of personalities and the motives that swayed them are sharply etched, as Sir Winston covers the eventful years from the accession of Henry VII to the exile of James II. The reigns in particular of Henry VIII, Elizabeth, of Charles I, of the Roundheads under Cromwell accent complete achievement, reversal, threat, triumph of the essential factors that made England. One has a rounded sense of the dominant figures, the issues and their resolution, the economic, political and social changes taking place. One gets less than might be wished of the artistic and creative sides of life. But one gets more of the scope of England's achievement, the penetration into a world beyond its own shores, and the formulation of the basic tenets of their creed. December Book of the Month selection gives this command performance status, and all who read The Birth Of Britain will provide a waiting market for Vol. II.