All the King’s Men

Written by Saul David

This is a history of the British Army, beginning with the Battle of Sedgemoor in 1685 and ending with the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. As well as depicting the great commanders such as Marlborough, Wolfe and Wellington, the author also investigates all the military campaigns and battles, both celebrated, for example Quebec and Waterloo, and the not so successful, such as the American War of Independence. The story is told from a variety of viewpoints, including those of the private soldier, and of military campaigners’ families who followed them to war.

The author is Professor of War Studies at Buckingham University, as well as being the author of two excellent works of historical fiction and, as you would expect, the research is impeccable in its utilisation of both published and unpublished primary sources. However this is not a scholarly text book. The author brings alive the whole era through the voices of those who were actually there. The footnotes also give interesting observations of little-known facts which aid the reader’s enjoyment of what is a fascinating period of British military history. Although similar books have been written, this is a very welcome addition to the genre. Recommended.