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Book/blog recommendations please?

7 years 1 month ago #1 by kaschykb

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  • Alright, well if I'm gonna get on board with this Waterloo thing i'm going to need some book/blog/documentary recommendations. I'm pretty clueless on the subject so what are some general overview books as well as Waterloo specific books? What are some websites/blogs for the online Napoleonic community? Any good documentaries or movies?

    PS. Please no Bernard Cornwell ;)

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    7 years 1 month ago - 7 years 1 month ago #2 by Saddletank

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  • Online the Napoleon Series website is one of the most scholarly resources out there. Simply masses of information about armies, generals, battles, campaigns, tactics, organsations, uniforms, regiment histories...

    www.napoleon-series.org/

    One of the best general histories of the Waterloo campaign I've read in recent years is Peter Hofschroer's 2-work series:

    www.amazon.co.uk/1815-Waterloo-Campaign-Wellington-Battles/dp/1853673048/ref=la_B001H6UMD6_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1389693180&sr=1-6

    www.amazon.co.uk/1815-Waterloo-Campaign-German-Victory/dp/1853673684/ref=la_B001H6UMD6_1_11?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1389693180&sr=1-11

    Hofschroer writes from a German perspective and his main point is to correct the subordinate role that British and other English-speaking historians have given the Prussian army and other German troops in the campaign. He has axes to grind and his narrative gets a little slanted especially when being critical of the delayed response of the Duke of Wellington to the news of the initial French crossing of the Belgian border, but on the whole these are excellent books giving a lot of tactical and regimental detail of the combat without getting bogged down.

    One of the things his account of the opening moves of the campaign highlights is how similar it feels to the strategic moves of ACW armies, nothing really has changed between the two other than some minor benefits from railroads the Union had and the incessant interference by telegraph messages from Washington that Hooker and then Meade had to deal with! But on the ground, the considerations of moving battalions, batteries, squadrons, divisions and corps is the same and in some ways the "last chance" offensive by Napoleon in 1815, north into Belgium, mirrors somewhat the Gettysburg campaign. Napoleon was facing a stronger army and had to win a quick decisive victory or else the war would be lost.

    HITS & Couriers - a different and realistic way to play SoW MP.
    Last edit: 7 years 1 month ago by Saddletank.

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    7 years 1 month ago #3 by Grog

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  • A good recommendation, Tank. Great books, if as you say, a little biased perhaps (the title says it all :) ).

    For a badly needed modern work covering the French experience of the battle, I can recommend this:

    www.amazon.co.uk/Waterloo-French-Perspective-Andrew-Field/dp/1781590435

    Its easy to read, with lots of lower rank accounts. Some good arguments.

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    7 years 1 month ago #4 by Marching Thru Georgia

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  • Another good book which gives a balanced look at the battle is A New History Of Waterloo by Alessandro Barbero. It is an in depth look at the battle by an author who doesn't have any overt prejudices.

    I can make this march and I will make Georgia howl.

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    7 years 1 month ago - 7 years 1 month ago #5 by privatewilley

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  • /http://www.amazon.com/Waterloo-Companion-The-Complete-Historys/dp/0811718549/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1389721726&sr=8-1&keywords=waterloo+companion

    Waterloo Companion, The: The Complete Guide to History's Most Famous Land Battle
    by Mark Adkin .

    It's an expensive book but well worth it.
    Last edit: 7 years 1 month ago by privatewilley.

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    7 years 1 month ago #6 by gunship24

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  • Marching Thru Georgia wrote: Another good book which gives a balanced look at the battle is A New History Of Waterloo by Alessandro Barbero. It is an in depth look at the battle by an author who doesn't have any overt prejudices.


    This one is good. :). It's on my "to read list". I have also read the The German Victory books, very good.

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    7 years 1 month ago #7 by Crikey

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  • A near run thing - David Howarth. A concise, highly readable account of the battle. A real gem. Others do it in more detail but this is what first sparked my interest in the battle many years ago.

    Cheap 2nd hand copies available.

    The Johnny Kincaid Rifle Brigade memoirs are also a good intro to this period and other battles

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    7 years 3 weeks ago #8 by lecrop

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  • General overview books:

    The Campaigns of Napoleon, David G.Chandler
    Napoleon's Wars: An International History, 1803-1815, Charles Esdaile

    Waterloo specific:

    Peter Hofschroer's 2-work series, as Saddletank stated

    Tactics:

    Imperial Bayonets, George Nafziger - Amazing, simply a masterpiece.

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    7 years 3 weeks ago #9 by Jack ONeill

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  • Imperial Bayonets!!! Holy crap! How did I miss that? I have almost everything George ever wrote. Oh well, off to Amazon.... :whistle:

    Jack B)

    American by birth, Californian by geography, Southerner by the Grace of God.

    "Molon Labe"

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    7 years 3 weeks ago #10 by Jim

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  • You should also consider 'History of the war in France and Belgium in 1815' by William Siborne. This is an in depth (584 pages) study of the full campaign. It was published in 1844 and Capt. Siborne carried on an extensive correspondence with British and Prussian officers. For some reason he got very few responses from French officers. :whistle: He gives a fair share of the credit to the Prussians IMO and is a good writer.

    The book can be downloaded for free from Google Books:
    Siborne - Waterloo free download

    -Jim

    "My God, if we've not got a cool brain and a big one too, to manage this affair, the nation is ruined forever." Unknown private, 14th Vermont, 2 July 1863

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    7 years 3 weeks ago - 7 years 3 weeks ago #11 by lecrop

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  • I also recommend Journal of the Waterloo campaign, by General CavaliĆ© Mercer, you can download here

    Last edit: 7 years 3 weeks ago by lecrop.

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    7 years 2 weeks ago - 7 years 2 weeks ago #12 by pakfront

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  • The Recollections of Rifleman Harris, Benjamin Randell HARRIS (1781 - 1858) and Henry CURLING (1803 - 1864)

    Available as a free audiobook on librivox
    Last edit: 7 years 2 weeks ago by pakfront.

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    7 years 2 weeks ago - 7 years 2 weeks ago #13 by Saddletank

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  • People's memoirs and dairies and such while fascinating don't really give that much helpful information. Mercer's account of Waterloo is a fantastic description of what SoW plays like under HITS but it doesn't give you much else. General histories of campaigns are best for this, the more modern the better, also tactical books such as the superb Nafziger title Lecrop mentioned. There are also many excellent uniform and organisational guides out there, especially Osprey's Men at Arms series.

    Google is also excellent, you can find troves of treasure on uniform pictures, battle maps, orders of battle with just an evenings surfing.

    George Nafziger's Orders of Battle resource:

    cdm16040.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/collection/p4013coll11/id/1277

    A good source for all kinds of things is the Total War Center forum for mods to Total War:Napoleon. Those guys are doing research just like we are:

    www.twcenter.net/forums/forumdisplay.php?1294-Historical-Research-Center

    And:

    www.twcenter.net/forums/showthread.php?384319-Useful-websites-covering-Uniforms-Flags-Naval-Maps-Downloadable-books-Orders-of-battle-Paintings-etc

    HITS & Couriers - a different and realistic way to play SoW MP.
    Last edit: 7 years 2 weeks ago by Saddletank.

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    5 years 6 months ago #14 by Volunteer

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  • Some bargains here -- prices look cheaper than Amazon:

    books.national-army-museum.ac.uk/napoleonic-c-306.html

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