Warriors: Extraordinary Tales from the Battlefield: Exceptional Tales from the Battlefield

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9780007197569: Warriors: Extraordinary Tales from the Battlefield: Exceptional Tales from the Battlefield

An exhilarating and uplifting account of the lives of sixteen ‘warriors’ from the last three centuries, hand-picked for their bravery or extraordinary military experience by the eminent military historian, author and ex-editor of the Daily Telegraph, Sir Max Hastings.

Over the course of forty years writing about war, Max Hastings has grown fascinated by outstanding deeds of derring-do on the battlefield (land, sea or air) – and by their practitioners. He takes as his examples sixteen people from different nationalities in modern history – including Napoleon’s ‘blessed fool’ Baron Marcellin de Marbot (the model for Conan Doyle’s Brigadier Gerard); Sir Harry Smith, whose Spanish wife Juana became his military companion on many a campaign in the early 19th century; Lieutenant John Chard, an unassuming engineer who became the hero of Rorke’s Drift in the Zulu wars; Captain Karl von Muller of the light cruiser Emden whose predations in the South China Sea on behalf of the German Imperial Navy in World War I earned him the title of ‘the gentleman of war’; the Australian-born man of letters Frederic Manning whose account of trench warfare, Her Privates We, is unrivalled; Squadron Leader Guy Gibson, the ‘dam buster’ whose heroism in the skies of World War II earned him the nation’s admiration but few friends and various other assorted combatants.

Every army, in order to prevail on the battlefield, needs a certain number of people capable of courage beyond the norm. In this book Max Hastings investigates what this norm might be – and how it has changed over the centuries. While celebrating feats of outstanding valour, he also throws a beady eye over the awarding of medals for gallantry – and why it is that so often the most successful warriors rarely make the grade as leaders of men.

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Review:

'A compelling history of a forgotten aspect of our maritime history...also a superb piece of writing' -- TLS

'A damn good war story is always worth repeating, and few tell them better than Hastings' -- Mail on Sunday

'Bathurst…has opened a magic casement on to a lost world on the edge of living memory' -- Independent on Sunday

'His brisk prose has the qualities of his warriors: clear, decisive, forceful...WARRIORS will enthrall everyone' -- Daily Telegraph

'Warriors is a timely reminder of how magnificently people can behave in war.' -- Michael Rose, The Field

'all (of the stories) are corking...his virtues are clarity and decisiveness' -- The Spectator

'grimly fascinating' -- The Economist

About the Author:

Max Hastings studied at Charterhouse and Oxford and became a foreign correspondent, reporting from more than sixty countries and eleven wars for BBC TV and the London Evening Standard. He has won many awards for his journalism. Among his bestselling books Bomber Command won the Somerset Maugham Prize, and both Overlord and Battle for the Falklands won the Yorkshire Post Book of the Year Prize. After ten years as editor and then editor-in-chief of the Daily Telegraph, he became editor of the Evening Standard in 1996. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he now lives in Berkshire.

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Hastings, Sir Max
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2005)
ISBN 10: 000719756X ISBN 13: 9780007197569
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Sir Max Hastings
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2005)
ISBN 10: 000719756X ISBN 13: 9780007197569
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