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In 1861 the American Civil War was in its first lethal year. Britain favoured the Confederacy – and the United Kingdom’s hostility to the North increased to a flashpoint when a Union warship stopped a British vessel at sea. At that moment, there was a very real risk of war between Britain and the Union.

Would Britain have invaded the United States? And if she had – what would have happened? This brilliantly envisaged alternative history shows on a truly epic scale the terrible consequences of such an action. For by the middle of the last century, warfare was already industrialised. Steam-powered ironclad ships at sea and trench warfare, powerful cannon and rapid firing guns on land had revolutionised the business of mass slaughter. Men died in battle on a scale never before seen.