The best books about the Battle of Waterloo

1 authors have picked their favorite books about the Battle of Waterloo and why they recommend each book.

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Book cover of Wellington's Dearest Georgy: The Life and Loves of Lady Georgiana Lennox

Wellington's Dearest Georgy: The Life and Loves of Lady Georgiana Lennox

By Alice Marie Crossland,

Why this book?

A romantic attachment between Lady Georgina ‘Georgy’ Lennox, later Baroness de Ros, and the Duke of Wellington matured into a long-lasting friendship. Georgy was present at the Duchess of Richmond’s famous ball, held before the Battle of Waterloo. Through Georgy’s eyes, we gain a different perspective on events—and people—that we thought we knew all about. This is a fascinating look at the life of a little-known woman who was a first-hand witness to some of the most important events of her era.

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Book cover of To Prove I’m Not Forgot: Living And Dying In A Victorian City

To Prove I’m Not Forgot: Living And Dying In A Victorian City

By Sylvia M. Barnard,

Why this book?

This tells the story, not just of Beckett Street Cemetery, supposedly the oldest municipal cemetery in the UK, but more important of those buried there, both rich and poor (and there are plenty of both). It sits across the road from what was once Leeds Workhouse, and has its share of former inmates from there in unmarked graves. Poignantly, there’s are also many guinea graves, where several are buried on top of each other, names listed on a headstone, all for a guinea (just over a pound). In its tales, this becomes a 19th-century social history of Leeds – there’s…

From the list:

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Book cover of An Infamous Army: A Novel of Wellington, Waterloo, Love and War

An Infamous Army: A Novel of Wellington, Waterloo, Love and War

By Georgette Heyer,

Why this book?

What to choose from this unique writer, who brought the Regency back into 21st century fashion with her large catalogue of novels? I love them all. They’re uniformly hilarious, adventurous, and full of mind-boggling, funny dialogue. Her detailed research is never more brilliantly revealed than in this novel, which is still highly prized by senior military figures as the greatest account of the Battle of Waterloo. All this, in a novel which succeeds on its own terms as a story. What more could one want?

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Book cover of Men of Honour

Men of Honour

By Adam Nicolson,

Why this book?

2005 saw the bicentennial of the Battle of Trafalgar, and a slew of books about the engagement. The best of the lot was Men of Honour. In it Nicolson broadens his focus away from the mechanics of the battle to explore the psychology of the protagonists and explains the world they grew up in so that the reader understands why they acted in the ways that they did. Good history answers the ‘what happened’ question. Great history lets you understand why.      

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