At just over two hundred pages, this introductory book charts the history of Sweden with a narrative that is supported by maps and tables. Rather than highlighting the &#39;rise and fall&#39; favoured by other books, Nordstrom focuses on the change from monarchy to free democracy, injecting a sense of pride and importance into modern Sweden.Designed for students, this book is for those who want their Scandinavian history brief. The rise, activity and fall of the Swedish empire \u0096 and by implication, information on much of Scandinavia \u0096 is outlined and concisely discussed in 160 pages.Although the text remains unchanged from the late 1970&#39;s, this is still the best English-language book on Sweden in the sixteenth century, covering the main areas of historical study (politics, religion &amp; state, economics) and the key individuals.This study of Gustavus Adolphus \u0096 Sweden&#39;s early seventeenth century king and a key figure in European religious, military and administrative history \u0096 is part of Longman&#39;s &#39;Profiles in Power&#39; series, which claims to provide long interpretative essays, not biographies. Nevertheless, this is an ideal volume on anyone interested in Gustavus himself, or Sweden and Europe during his reign.Focusing on the emergence of Sweden and Russia as great European powers, a struggle that involved the bloody northern wars of the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries, this book is only partly about Scandinavia, but the history can&#39;t be told in any other way. The topic is similar to that of pick 7, but at half the length it\u0092s more suitable for students.Gustavus Adolphus may have elevated Sweden to a major role in Europe \u0096 or at least started the trend \u0096 but Charles XI continued the development via a less glamorous method: massive governmental changes aimed at creating a perfect absolutist monarchy. This book explains and interprets both Charles&#39; actions and their consequences.Focusing on the period 1719 to 1772, Roberts&#39; book examines the internal politics and constitution of Sweden, an era when the Swedish people were considered the &#39;freest&#39; in Europe. Given that the issue of freedom remains on the political agenda, this book will be of interest to those interested in modern politics, as well as the past.The Northern Wars caused vast changes in northeastern Europe, as Poland and the Swedish Empire fell to Russia, and later Prussia. Frost covers a range of themes \u0096 military and non-military alike - in a revisionist work which covers the late sixteenth, seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, a heyday of Swedish \u0096 and Scandinavian \u0096 military prowess.This may be a fairly expensive work with only four highly specialised essays, but it&#39;s essential for anyone interested in the subjects, which remain historically controversial. Charles XII takes centre stage, with studies of his &#39;foreign policy&#39;, his domestic and dynastic importance as well as the intriguing matter of his death; the final piece concerns Oxenstierna in Germany.Long out of print \u0096 limiting interested readers to libraries and second-hand outlets/online auctions in their search \u0096 I haven\u0092t been able to see this book; however, it regularly appears on college and university reading lists and thus deserves a mention. The book collects a range of Roberts&#39; lectures/essays, and has been described variously as &#39;light&#39; and &#39;interesting&#39;.