Blundering to Glory – Owen Connelly

Napoleon’s Military Campaigns

After the book by the Napoleonic apologists last time, I thought a glimpse of the other side would be warranted.  In the end it was a bit disappointing not because the author proved his case or did not prove it, but never really seemed to bring it up.  So the title is a bit of false advertising.

The only ‘revisionist’ discussion I remember is some early mention about him not being an innovator in Military Science and by not having a bullet-proof perfect plan at the start of a campaign.  I guess I never saw either of those as an issue or even something that historians contend.  Being able to adjust to inevitable surprises and win out is the mark of a great general, not a poor one.

But even these themes are dropped almost entirely in favor of a standard recounting of the rest of his career.  While this is fine, it isn’t what the title seemed to promise, nor does it really examine either his strategy or his opponents’ strategies in any substantial way.  As a short roundup of the era, it is fine, but the confrontational title isn’t lived up to.

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