Perhaps I should admit now that even with all my college degrees, I got through school with only one real history course. With the help of PBS, my interest in history did increase over the years but that's not saying much. But as my interest in genealogy increased and my research progressed, I saw how lacking my knowledge was and how interesting specific topics in history could be.
For instance, I soon found that all of my CAUSIER and CARR lines have a connection to Yorkshire but my research was hampered by my complete lack of knowledge of Yorkshire's geography or history. These great books are helping me catch up:
A History of Yorkshire: 'County of the Broad Acres' by David Hey (Lancaster, England: Carnegie Publishing, 2005). It's 472 pages with at least one illustration on almost every page. It is so lovely just to look at that sometimes I just sit and go through reading the picture captions. In 10 chapters, content goes from "prehistory" to present day. Careful attention is made to show how the sub-regions are each unique across that time span.
My Ancestors were Methodists by William Leary (London: Society of Genealogists, 1999). This is a small, 115 page pamphlet. Most of it is a listing of existing Methodist records across England, but the first 20 pages are an excellent overview of all the different types of Methodists. This topic became very important to me when I realized that I was having trouble finding records on the children of John Henry CARR and Ann Matilda CAUSIER because I was looking in Church of England records while the family was Primitive Methodist! Clearly, I need to learn more about Methodist records and history, but this is a start.
Have a great time at your library or bookstore!