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Wednesday, 22 April 2020

Book Review: The Napoleonic Wars by Richard Holmes

The Napoleonic Wars by Richard Holmes book cover

Written by one of Britain’s best known and most respected military historians, this is the essential account of the Napoleonic campaigns.

This is popular history at its most engrossing, providing a vivid introduction to Napoleon's astonishing career and his effect on world history. A charismatic and astute military leader, Napoleon built an empire in a series of astounding campaigns from 1796 to 1812, winning many of the most famous battles of all time. At the height of his powers most of Europe was under his control, from Portugal to Moscow. Bestselling author Richard Holmes brings the era's great battles to life while he recounts in detail how Napoleon transformed France’s administrative, educational, and legal systems, and forged a pattern that shapes modern governments to this day.


History fascinates me and I am always searching for the opportunity to expand my knowledge and satisfy my curiosity. Therefore, when I visited Berlin last month, I had a great time learning about the history of the city, the country, and Europe as a whole. That trip, and in particular a visit to the Deutsches Historisches Museum, piqued my interest to delve deeper into European history - which is where this book comes in.

The Napoleonic Wars is a non-fiction book giving a concise yet comprehensive overview of Napoleon, his life, and his military campaigns. It's clear that Richard Holmes, the author, is extremely knowledgeable about the subject and his research really shines through the pages of the book.

The book is broken down into short chapters, making the information easy to digest. This also makes it the perfect book to dip into every now and again, rather than suffering from information overload by trying to read it all in one go!

In addition to providing plenty of information about Napoleon himself, the book also gives short biographies about some of the other key players of the period. From Napoleon's family to his allies, enemies and more, a lot of useful background information is given to support each chapter of the book.

Overall, I found this book to be both interesting and insightful. It's packed full of information and gives a great overview of Napoleon and the impact he has had on France and Europe more widely. If you're interested in learning more about this period of history, I'd definitely recommend The Napoleonic Wars

Rating: 3 stars

The Napoleonic Wars is available to buy now.

* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Will you be reading the book? Let me know in the comments below!

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