I'm not quite sure how to begin on Kemp's Art in History. I found it troubling that the first mention of a woman was on page 187 (out of 214 pages of text), and the small spate of women here included Artemisia Gentileschi (who should probably have been mentioned during the discussion of the Baroque period, given she is one of it's more enduring figures...). I also expected to be put on the wrong foot from the off, as the book opens with a chapter on ancient art, which is something I teach as a professional ancient historian. But the chapter was both clear and (mostly) correct, so that was a nice surprise.
The book is well illustrated and written in an engaging style, that tries to play to both the interest in talking about the artists' lives and the necessity to talk about their work. I particularly liked that Kemp also discussed the way that media changed across the centuries.
All in all, this was a nice smooth introduction back into reading about art for me - something I have not done (with the exception of ancient art) for a long time. I suspect it will take me a bit longer to start remembering how to write about art (and about art scholarship) though.