Royal Dates with Destiny presents, in calendar form, the oddball ways in which the great and the good have met their maker. For every day of the year, the author has unearthed at least one unusual aristocratic death, from the famous (such as Cleopatra and her asp) to the less well-known (e.g. the Swedish king who ate too much pudding). Based on a number of scholarly sources for each entry, these four hundred or so 'summaries of royal mortality ' give an idiosyncratic and delightfully bizarre historical overview of the surprising ways in which the world's most powerful have perished. An appendix lists how the 'other half has died', including death by underwear, cricket ball and pea soup, while an index - from 'abbot, lecherous' to 'wrestling, with bears' - is of limited referential value but, like the rest of the book, is hugely enjoyable to read.
Robert Easton lives and moves across three passions - his love of the Church (he is an Anglican minister), his love of education (he teaches Religious Studies and Latin at Brighton College), and his love of the written word (e.g. his work The Good, the Bad and the Unready, Penguin 2008). He lives and works in Brighton with Kai, his wife, Harry, their dog, and Dugdale, a tangerine-coloured left-hand-drive Citroen 2CV.