Napoleon Bonaparte

A definitive biography of Bonaparte from his birth in Corsica to his death in exile on St Helena, this book examines all aspects of Bonaparte s spectacular rise to power and his dizzying fall It offers close examination of battlefield victories, personal torments, military genius, Bonaparte s titanic ego and his relationships with the French government, Talleyrand, WellinA definitive biography of Bonaparte from his birth in Corsica to his death in exile on St Helena, this book examines all aspects of Bonaparte s spectacular rise to power and his dizzying fall It offers close examination of battlefield victories, personal torments, military genius, Bonaparte s titanic ego and his relationships with the French government, Talleyrand, Wellington and Josephine A consummate biography of a complex man.
Napoleon Bonaparte A definitive biography of Bonaparte from his birth in Corsica to his death in exile on St Helena this book examines all aspects of Bonaparte s spectacular rise to power and his dizzying fall It offer

  • Title: Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Author: Alan Schom
  • ISBN: 9780060929589
  • Page: 270
  • Format: Paperback
  • 1 thought on “Napoleon Bonaparte”

    1. Terrible biography. Napoleon may have his faults but he deserves a fairer treatment than this. My review is based on less than half of its 900 pages. After the chapter on the Imperial coronation turned into a soap opera starring the Bonaparte family, I decided I couldn't go on. The remainder of the book just seemed too imposing.Schom turns Napoleon into an amoral monster, eaten up with ambition. He places unfair emphasis on the Egyptian campaign while belittling Napoleon's victories. He spends t [...]

    2. Having read a short biography of Napoléon I in the past, I was pleased and ready for this one--perhaps the longest and most detailed study available in English. The writing is good, the annotation sufficient and the subject fascinatingly outrageous.Schom's book has been criticized by John Clubbe of the International Napoleonic Society for being a hatchet job on the emperor. It certainly is true that Napoleon comes across as no exemplary figure in either his public or private life, but should he [...]

    3. While engrossed in early American history and our relations with England from the Revolution through the early 1800's, a gentleman by the name of Napoleon popped up from time to time.The details of his career had been left a foggy, distant memory in my subconscious, stashed there years ago sometime early in my college career. Not being a psych undergrad, his M.O. did not appeal to me at the time. As I learned then, he was, after all and quite simply, a tyrant bent on world domination. Apologists [...]

    4. This biography has some very good points to it. For example, it devotes entire chapters to Tellyrand and Fouche. However, one thing I hate about so many historians, especially military historians, is to make the losing general in a battle seem like a fool, or the winner just lucky. I've never commanded an army in battle, but I imagine it is a lot harder than armchair general historians appreciate. Also, this author clearly hates Bonaparte. For sure, there is much to dislike about N.B but the aut [...]

    5. What a complete piece of literary trash. This book absolutely couldn't be worse. Any British view point is better than this book. It is the most biased piece of crap I have ever read, and clearly no one edited this for grammar mistakes, because it has PLENTY. Also misleads everyone who knows nothing about Napoleon by giving them incorrect figures, statistics, and dates. Got about 100 pages in and stopped. Never own this book. EVER. I'm kind of sad that I own it. Makes everything in my library lo [...]

    6. This was a very informative, yet extremely biased book. What bothered me most about it, and the reason why I gave it three stars instead of four or 5, is that the author clearly hates Napoleon and deprives him of any credit he rightfully deserves. If you hate Napoleon, this book is for you. If you like Napoleon or want a fair account of his life, look elsewhere.

    7. Just another pointless hatchet job by a British historian intent on making Napoleon the forerunner of both totalitarianism and just another long line of despots defeated by glorious Albion. This could have easily been written by William Pitt or one of the aristocrats Napoleon defeated in battle, since it is pretty much just a non-stop screed. You are better off reading Markham's account.

    8. Well written and for its length it does a good job of holding one's attention.Unfortunately, Schom appears to have a grudge against Bonaparte. When he wins, he's lucky. When he loses, it's incompetence. Those who love him are deluded by Nappy's propaganda. Those who hate him are clear-eyed realists. Truth is Revolutionary France was no place for the faint of heart, so any one who came to the fore at this juncture of history was going to be a shark.The biography would have been better served by e [...]

    9. You don't need to read very much of this book to realize that Alan Schom obviously had an anti-Napoleon axe to grind while writing this biography. Anyone searching for an enjoyable, evenhanded presentation of the life and career of a fascinating historical figure will need not look to this flawed work.

    10. THis is crap. The man has a vendetta against Napoleon and is a highly biased, and it shows in every paragraph. Avoid at all cost unless you like repetition of "the man is an egomaniac"

    11. Excellent one-volume biography of Napoleon, let down by sloppy editing. The spelling errors (really!) and the sentence construction, for me, detracted from what was otherwise a very readable biography. (This was the 1997 hardcover edition) The author (Alan Schom) seems not to have been a fan of Napoleon. I had expected something of a eulogy for a great man; instead I found his many faults highlighted. It was ironic that he wanted to be in power (at first) so that he could make sure Corsica no lo [...]

    12. This is the most remarkable biography I have ever read.I have a basic grasp of the Napoleonic era, and have read histories of the Peninsular War and the Russian Campaign and the like, but I have never read such a clear and evocative precis of the little Corsican sociopath himself. Like the little Austrian sociopath 150 years later, the man himself diminishes the more you know about him. The child of a rebellious political environment, always arrogant and self-aggrandizing, he changed the face of [...]

    13. I excitedly delved into this book. The thickness of the book hinted that much about Napoleon would be revealed. It was not to be and I quickly wished that Schom's book had been thinner. There is no spirit in his work. It seems as if the author was busy simply regurgitating information that could be found in a number of places. He did do a better job of pointing on the importance of Napoleon's generals, but even that seemed to be a sterile endeavor.

    14. Easy, if depressing, read. You might hope for something larger than life, but instead you see an almost garden-variety tale of psychopathy, megalomania and cronyism -- tiresomely, fearsomely reminiscent of Hitler. The writing and scholarship seem very sound, the pace brisk, and Schom makes no secret of his feelings about Napoleon and many of his hangers-on. A very well-written book, laying bare the essential meanness of his subject.

    15. I needed a complete bio of Napoleon for research, this book fit the bill but poorly. It really comes across as a litany of battle after battle (which, to an extent is accurate). Still, it's written in a leaden style, and I'd at least expect complete sentences from a published historian, but that seems too much to ask of this book

    16. It took me a year and a half, but I finally finished this book. I decided to read it after reading an article about Napoleon, and realized I knew nothing about him and his times. Now, I do. And let me say this: If France and Europe can survive this madman and war-monger, we can survive Trump.

    17. Well researched and well written. Praises end there. If you exam the language used this is perhaps the most biased bio I've yet read on anyone. Hatchet job entirely

    18. The author states in his preface to this comprehensive biography of Napoleon Bonaparte that his goal in writing it is to "introduce a sense of reality and understanding - in this case, the full life of Napoleon Bonaparte. . . . One must include his personal values, family, friends, associates problems, character and goals." At the same time, the author says he does not like history that is "reduced to the dates of reigns of kings and of battles and treaties."If this was the goal of the author in [...]

    19. I have a bit of a hard time describing this book. There are sections with an incredible depth of detail, but where the unceasing cataloguing loses the point. Then there are points where he glosses over huge sections of battles, and it's hard to ascribe any kind of method to this shifting focus. The military chapters in particular suffer from a lack of vision. When Schom writes about the interpersonal relationships of the empire, between Napoleon and his family, or among his underlings, it's fasc [...]

    20. Schom tells the story of the emperor's career in light of his character. At every stage of his life, whether he was playing politics during the risky days of the French Revolution or taking on the might of Russia and England, Napoleon's lust for ever grater challenge led him to one brilliant success after another. Ultimately he reached too far and was crushed by his own ambition. But it's a long road to Napoleon's defeat and the trip is thrilling as witness his peak performances as a general, hi [...]

    21. Ok, so the reviews of Napoleon: A Life by Alan Scholm are basically 50/50. Half are good, half are 1-star reviews because the author "puts Napoleon down/hates Napoleon".Okay, so what's wrong with that? Everyone has their own opinion. The author can state his opinion if he wants, it's his work. As for me, I'm only around page 29-30. It's a 800-900 page book, but it's very good and I don't see any instances of Scholm putting Nap down yet. Even so, I doubt I would even notice.

    22. Those who know me know that I rarely cast aside a book once I have started it. I do generally try to finish even if it galls me. This is because I am finding something of value in it, even if the author’s particular way of realizing that value is imperfect. Hence, my decision to put aside this book has a devastating implication – I am finding little value in the work to reward my persistence with it. What is wrong with this book? Unlike certain works I have read, and some of which I have rev [...]

    23. This is an excellent book, exhaustively researched, but exhausting to read! I read the hardcover edition, which is 800 pages in length, not including the Appendix, etc. I carefully read the first 20% of the book, but became overwhelmed and bored, so I skimmed the rest. Schom writes clearly and well, and I enjoyed his portraits of the "characters"; they were richly detailed mini-biographies. But although initially the book was arranged chronologically, he often went back and forth in time, so som [...]

    24. Very readable extensive biography. found it totally engrossing . Get the impression that this writer is presenting the case for the Prosecution.Napoleon appears as a dictator who bled France dry of men and money. Encouraging systematic looting of conquered territories, ill-treating prisoners of war, causing huge amounts of suffering by making hardly any health care provisions for his own wounded. A pathological liar, a propagandist,who rigged plebiscites, curtailed free press and suppressed crit [...]

    25. I have often thought I'd like to find a good biography of the life of Napoleon Bonaparte and become a bit better acquainted with him. Alan Schom has put together a lengthy account of his life I was amazed to find that although he brought some minor reforms to France following a bloody and violent revolution, he ended up becoming so addicted to war and power that his ambitions nearly destroyed the whole of Europe. France itself suffered terribly under his reign with an entire generation of young [...]

    26. As you can see from my start and end dates of reading this book, I felt as if I were trudging along side Napoleon's royal army as a silent observer to his intentional trespass of wars that brought large scale rape, pillage, and plunder through out Europe dragging every European nation into chaos and poverty, under the hard yoke of the French Empire. What was particularly interesting was how now France (besides for this war in Libya) is considered a civilized nation that values restraint. But bac [...]

    27. I read this book something like 15 years ago, shortly after reading the same author's "Trafalgar", and it is one of the books that I remember from that time and which I can therefore give a retrospective rating.I recall it being of a good length and that it gave a clear and compelling account of Napoleon's career - balancing the triumphs and disasters and allowing one to see the man behind the legend. Indeed what becomes clear is Napoleon's extraordinary ability to survive the disasters, e.g. th [...]

    28. As others have noted, this book is not good. The writing is convoluted; it appears to not have been proofread; the author has a strange love of exclamation points, making it read at times like a children's book but it does provide a very detailed, in-depth look at Napoleon Bonaparte. I like objective, impartial biographies. I am not interested in the author's personal opinions or feelings. I don't want jokey asides or soap-opera-esque descriptions of events and family members. Unfortunately, A [...]

    29. Okay, I got to page 300 a year ago and now I'm going to give it another crack. On March 8, 1796 at 7pm Josephine shows up in a white muslin dress to get married. By 10:00 pm, with no sign of Napoleon, The Mayor of Paris walks out on the ceremony . Finally after showing up close to three hours late they both sign the marriage certificate. Josephine giving her birth date at 1767 (instead of 1763) and Napoleon giving his birth date as 1768 (instead of 1769). Napoleon lies about his place of birth o [...]

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