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Napoleon the Great de Andrew Roberts
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Napoleon the Great (original: 2014; edição: 2014)

de Andrew Roberts

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
8952718,294 (4.19)20
" ... the first single-volume, cradle-to-grave biography to take advantage of the recent publication of Napoleon's thirty-three thousand letters, which radically transform our understanding of his character and motivation"--Jacket.
Membro:Tofrek
Título:Napoleon the Great
Autores:Andrew Roberts
Informação:Allen Lane (2014), Hardcover, 832 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:Waterloo, Napoleon

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Napoleon: A Life de Andrew Roberts (2014)

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Mostrando 1-5 de 27 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
This book is widely regarded as the definitive biography of Napoleon Bonaparte in the English language. After listening to this book, I find no reason to disagree. Napoleon was and is a huge figure in European history. He conquered swaths of territory and reformed national systems. He can only be compared to Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great in terms of impact. He did not wrestle England, his archenemy, to the ground economically or militarily. After losing to Wellington at Waterloo, he died in exile at St. Helena, an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Here, Roberts captures the drama of his life in detailed terms and makes an epic subject into an epic book.

Many, many biographies of Napoleon exist in many languages across many decades. The only reason not to read this one is that it is unfailingly long. Its length becomes its strength because it thoroughly treats every salient subject of Napoleon’s life with fairness and erudition. However, many readers might prefer a smaller treatment for the sake of time. That desire is fair, for life is short.

Nonetheless, Napoleon was a genius of a statesman, and Roberts gives this man his historical due. Napoleon reformed legal systems and won around 90% of his dozens of battles. Were it not for a few mistakes, he might have also conquered Russia or defeated the English at Waterloo. Roberts provides detailed analysis of every such subject. Had he listened to Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (found with him at his death on St. Helena), Napoleon might have devised a better economic system than the Continental system designed to exclude England.

As an American, I cannot help but feel that Napoleon spent too much of his life warring as a egotistical king rather than reforming as an enlightened man of the people. He did bring the Napoleonic Code to the legal systems of just about every European country except for England. Had he accepted peace instead of desiring Empire, he might have contributed even more lasting things. Certainly, he epitomized the French nationalism that grew out of the French Revolution, but he also epitomized what went wrong about that – by becoming an autocrat and dictator.

Overall, Roberts’ treatment enchants readers in the English language and inspires fanciful dreams about a myriad of possible trajectories of the modern world. Fans of history and admirers of modern politics should especially be attracted to this masterful account. I had learned much about him in history classes in school, but while learning, I became aware that I was missing some depths of an interesting subject. This book, at 1300+ pages, filled that hole with animus. Even though it took months to listen through, I am glad I spent hours contemplating this great man of history. ( )
  scottjpearson | Aug 19, 2021 |
Learning about Napoleon Bonaparte is always fun; he’s one of the giants in the world of history, and he hasn’t ceased to amaze 21st century people. I enjoyed reading the book — especially since one of my profesors for Fall 2019 discussed Napoleon in a lecture — and I really felt like I learned a lot about the man. 810 pages, however, is a little bit intimidating (although Grant by Ron Chernow was around 950 pages); I say this book’s length is intimidating only because Napoleon himself can be described as intimidating. ( )
  historybookreads | Jul 26, 2021 |
A good, comprehensive one-volume history of singularly influential French general and emperor. As a general interest read, it probably doesn't have enough strategy for the military buffs, doesn't have enough drama for biography lovers and doesn't have enough impact analysis for the historians. But it has some of all of that and provides a good, comprehensive picture of the man who literally defined an era. The author is unafraid to defend Napoleon against his many detractors, nor to point out Napoleon's real failures. The barrage of names can be a little bewildering, but as everyone is introduced primarily as they relate to Napoleon, it's easier to follow than a less-focused book about the time period would be.

(On a personal note, I thought the maps of Napoleon's battles and campaigns, while welcome, often left more questions than answers and could probably have been improved.) ( )
  dhmontgomery | Dec 13, 2020 |
Al-Jabarti didn’t say what this book says he said; it’s a report of a report, as unsophisticated as interpretations tend to be (probably a reported translation of a report; like the game “broken telephone,” by the time the statement arrives it’s already passed through so many biases that it is no longer its original message)…he wasn’t against the revolution’s “principles of equality” as this book suggests (why would he be?!) but against the bloodshed it entailed and the history that proceeded it, that horror, he saw incongruous with the principles of Islam…that bad reading made it hard for me to buy much of what was said later…

Al-Jabarti’s books are actually available online, free, and there are books about books parsing out interpretations…how the author interpreted his writing the way he did suggests to me he is working with intermediary texts
  AAAO | Sep 18, 2020 |
A wonderful fun robustly researched narrative history, marred only by the fact that it seems like a love-letter at times. ( )
  billt568 | Aug 25, 2020 |
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" ... the first single-volume, cradle-to-grave biography to take advantage of the recent publication of Napoleon's thirty-three thousand letters, which radically transform our understanding of his character and motivation"--Jacket.

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