Saturday, 20 November 2010

HISTORICAL FICTION REVIEW: Revolution 4: The Fields of Death - Simon Scarrow

Release Date: 11/11/10


From the bestselling author of THE GLADIATOR and FIRE AND SWORD comes the final volume in his epic quartet of novels about Wellington and Napoleon It's 1810, and both Viscount Wellington and Emperor Napoleon have made great names for themselves as outstanding military commanders. Wellington expands his achievements and enjoys further fame during his years in Spain but knows his most challenging test will be to face Napoleon's mighty army. But when Wellington invades France in 1814 he gains a swift and certain victory. He indulges in a spell of self-congratulation at Vienna -- until news comes of Napoleon's triumphant return. Napoleon, ambitious as ever, embarks on a Russian campaign which ends in disaster and is then defeated at Leipzig in the biggest battle ever fought in Europe. With Napoleon's power waning at long last, Wellington must seize the opportunity to crush the tyrant once and for all -- and so the two giants face each other for the final time, at Waterloo...


When the original Revolution series was launched it was envisioned as a trilogy. However, in order to achieve this Simon would have to have made a lot of tough choices through cuts to not only the overall story but personal defining character building moments that made the principle characters the men they were.

So it was a brave choice to extend the series to a quartet and to be honest, it was a good thing that he did. The characters not only grow but it increases the crescendo for the battle of Waterloo which, whilst we know what happened through history, was a defining moment as these two huge characters faced each other on the field of battle. Simon’s writing style was made for this conflict, his careful balance of pace with it’s fast battle sequences vie against the moments of personal reflection and have made the overall experience something special. Apt, heroic and above all else a great way to inspire historical research which, when backed up with realistic characters that the reader can not only associate with but also admire this is historical fiction at its best.

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