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British Army Military Book of the Year, 2015

ebook / ISBN-13: 9780748134120

Price: £12.99

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A fabulous story, superbly told Max Hastings

The bloodbath at Waterloo ended a war that had engulfed the world for over twenty years. It also finished the career of the charismatic Napoleon Bonaparte. It ensured the final liberation of Germany and the restoration of the old European monarchies, and it represented one of very few defeats for the glorious French army, most of whose soldiers remained devoted to their Emperor until the very end.

Extraordinary though it may seem much about the Battle of Waterloo has remained uncertain, with many major features of the campaign hotly debated. Most histories have depended heavily on the evidence of British officers that were gathered about twenty years after the battle. But the recent publication of an abundance of fresh first-hand accounts from soldiers of all the participating armies has illuminated important episodes and enabled radical reappraisal of the course of the campaign. What emerges is a darker, muddier story, no longer biased by notions of regimental honour, but a tapestry of irony, accident, courage, horror and human frailty.

An epic page turner, rich in dramatic human detail and grounded in first-class scholarly research, Waterloo is the real inside story of the greatest land battle in British history, the defining showdown of the age of muskets, bayonets, cavalry and cannon.


Magnificent and magisterial
Literary Review
A quite brilliant piece of meticulous historical detective work . . . I have no doubt that this book will become a classic
Scotland on Sunday
Clayton makes the fog of war central to the narrative; we are pitched into the chaos and din of Waterloo . . . We experience it as Wellington or Napoleon or an ordinary soldier would have done
Daily Telegraph
Stirring . . . a fabulous story, superbly told
Max Hastings, Sunday Times
Tim Clayton not only gives a masterful account of the battle that changed the face of Europe but also sets it in its proper context . . . Clayton manages the difficult trick in military history of providing a blow-by-blow account without losing the flow of the narrative
An incisive analysis of how the battle unravelled and why
The Times
Nuanced, broad, searching and elegant . . . the overall integrity of his scholarship is undeniable. The book may well become the most authoritative account of the four-day campaign
Tim Clayton's book is the best overview of the meeting of the three armies
Simon Heffer, New Statesman