Solider of Destiny

Book - 2015
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"Written with great energy and authority--and using the newly available personal archives of Napoleon himself--the first volume of a majestic two-part biography of the great French emperor and conqueror. All previous lives of Napoleon have relied more on the memoirs of others than on his own uncensored words. This is the first life of Napoleon, in any language, that makes full use of his newly released personal correspondence compiled by the Napol©♭on Foundation in Paris. All previous lives of Napoleon have relied more on the memoirs of others than on his own uncensored words. Michael Broers' biography draws on the thoughts of Napoleon himself as his incomparable life unfolded. It reveals a man of intense emotion, but also of iron self-discipline; of acute intelligence and immeasurable energy. Tracing his life from its dangerous Corsican roots, through his rejection of his early identity, and the dangerous military encounters of his early career, it tells the story of the sheer determination, ruthlessness, and careful calculation that won him the precarious mastery of Europe by 1807. After the epic battles of Austerlitz, Jena and Friedland, France was the dominant land power on the continent. Here is the first biography of Napoleon in which this brilliant, violent leader is evoked to give the reader a full, dramatic, and all-encompassing portrait."--Publisher's description.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Pegasus Books LLC,, 2015
Edition: First Pegasus Books hardcover edition
Description: 585 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color), portraits, maps ; 24 cm
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9781605988726
Branch Call Number: 944.05092 Nap


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Jan 16, 2016

For a man who's written several books about various aspects of Napoleon's life (in particular, his various campaigns), this one - the first installment of a two part biography - was satisfactory but still disappointing. It tells the story of how a second rate military officer who no one heard when the French Revolution began in 1789 could have rose so spectacularly to the top in just a few years. But it is overly detailed at times, and much is made not just of his no-expense spared strategy, but also his relationships with his family as well as his first wife, Josephine, who proved to be much more manipulative than previously thought. One would hope that when part two is published, the author will try to make the story more accessible - a textbook isn't necessarily meant for the masses.

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