When an author succeeds in creating a page turner from a segment of history beaten thoroughly to death by a thousand other historians and writers of historical fiction there should be some background music and applause.
Richard Holmes has succeeded.
Redcoat follows the British soldier through the Seven Year War, the Peninsula War, the wars in the Americas, the wars in India through the Sepoy Mutiny and Afghanistan to the Crimea. And every page contains some new surprise, some fragment of detail the reader won’t have encountered previously.
Ever wondered where the idea for Hornblower’s fascination with the Lady Barbara Wellesley most likely originated? Illustrations: “Below: The Marquess of Anglesey was a talented cavalry commander who, when Lord Paget, beat the French at Benavente and Sahagun. Unfortunately he ran off with Wellington’s sister-in-law and could not be re-employed in the Peninsula. As Lord Uxbridge he lost a leg at…
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