Book Reviews

This is where I share some of my favourite books from my collection both new and old which have made an impact on me or I find just plain useful


This book, it's like a time capsule, taking you right back to the days of the Sikh Wars, when every day was a test of courage and honour. Reading it feels like standing on the battlefields of Mudki, Ferozeshah, and Sobraon all over again.

The detail and depth of the information, it's second to none. In fact, it takes one back to the Anglo-Sikh Wars of 1845-1846 and 1848-1849, when deeds of valour were a daily affair. Whether a gamer of those wars, or even just a history buff, this book is a must-read and a perpetual companion when getting immersed into this fascinating period of history.

As a guide to these colourful conflicts this book gives detailed and comprehensive information on the organisation and uniforms of both armies, suggested rules, how to build your armies, scenarios and detailed narratives and orders of battle for all of the major battles. Job done, what more do you need?

An absolute must have if you want to learn about a key period in Anglo-Indian history, this book is your ticket.

Every Bullet Has Its Billet

This period of history is one of my personal favourites and Barry Hilton’s book widened my perspective of this era big time. My mind buzzed. I started planning new armies, even navies, you know how it goes I’m sure.

Barry’s enthusiasm for the period is catching, his knowledge extensive. Go no further if you are looking for a reference guide to further your knowledge of this often forgotten epoch.

So what has the guide got in it. Overviews of some of the main conflicts as well as some of the minor encounters; how to build your armies; information on uniforms and flags; scenarios to salivate over; the evolution of weaponry and tactics and battlefield doctrines. Everything one needs to start a new gaming project. An epoch which can offer us some heroic skirmish fights, colouful large actions on lan and sea

Moreover, some wonderfull eye candy images of well painted figures and well presented games tables, which is it how it should be. Something to aspire to. Recommended.

The Battle of Aughrim 1691

The Battle of Aughrim, which occurred on the 12th of July, 1691, represents a critical juncture in the Williamite War in Ireland. This conflict, while less renowned than the larger Battle of the Boyne in 1690, was the decisive event that determined the trajectory of the war. In the fields outside Aughrim, a village in County Galway.

The Jacobites, under the command of General St Ruth, initially held a formidable position. However, the dynamics of the battle shifted dramatically when a cannonball claimed the life of St Ruth. The Williamite forces, under Godert de Ginkel, capitalised on this chaos, securing a decisive victory.

Michael McNally's scholarly book offers a comprehensive exploration of this significant military engagement. His work meticulously details the events that led up to the battle. he book is illustrated with both colour and black and white images of the combatants, orders of battle as well as easy to follow maps.

The author’s desciption of the day’s action is inspiring. Always a ready reference in my library.

Napoleon’s Triumph

The battle of Friedland has always been a battle I had scant information on, and as a wargamer I wanted to recreate in miniature one of Napoleon’s implacable enemies, the army of Tsar Alexander of Russia. I had previously purchased James Arnold’s definitive book ‘Crisis in the Snows’ where I was transported back to Napoleon’s winter campaign in Poland by Arnold’s descriptive narrative of the events leading up to the inconclusive setback at the battle of Eylau.

James Arnold is a historian I go to to for his style of writing, but more importantly for his detailed research and use of original sources. I never find regurgitated information in his books just sheer delightful original historical narratives.

‘Napoleon’s Triumph’ is well illustrated with black and white portraits, maps and orders of battle, and 424 pages of expert knowledge. If you want a picture book, look elsewhere.

The French Imperial Guard:
1. The Foot Soldiers, 1814-1815

André Joineau’s books are never far from sight. They are arranged close to where I paint my figures, for these are, in my opinion, essential companions for the wargamer who loves to paint and enjoys the study of uniforms generally.

This series of books are golden nuggets of information that have been well researched from original sources. A compact guide for the Napoleonic aficionado.

This book and its companions in the series are full of accurate, illustrative depictions of uniforms from given sources, not an in-depth academic study. For my painting guides, these books are one of my first ports of call.

Empires Collide: The French and Indian Wars 1754-63

The book, which weaves historical accounts with meticulous research, stands out not only for its insightful narrative but also for the wealth of information conveyed through its glorious maps and illustrations. These visual aids prove to be an invaluable asset for the wargamer and history buff, enhancing the reader's grasp of the geographical intricacies and strategic manoeuvres that defined this tumultuous era.

Empires Collide emerges as a meticulously researched and comprehensive account of a crucial period in North American history. The inclusion of glorious maps and illustrations elevates the reading experience, offering readers a visual journey through the complexities of the conflicts. This publication is an invaluable resource for scholars, history enthusiasts, and anyone seeking a nuanced understanding of the multifaceted dynamics that defined the French and Indian Wars.