Writing Wednesday:The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes

I published my reading list on this blog recently, and finished a book yesterday, so I thought I would use Scribbling Saturday to report on someone else’s scribblings. Mark Urban‘s scribblings, in fact. The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes.

I was interested in the book because I am interested in the Peninsular War – you know, Wellington and Napoleon in Spain and Portugal. I know it’s strange – blame Sean Bean and Sharpe! Oh, and Bernard Cornwell.

The book is a biography of George Scovell, who worked in the Quartermasters division of Wellington’s army. He was given responsibility for creating a group of Guides who were basically spies sent out into the countryside to find out what the French armies were up to.

Many dispatches were captured between the various leaders and Napoleon and his brother Joseph, who he had set up as King of Spain. But they were in code. Urban goes into some detail about the codes used, and the painstaking way that Scovell cracked them. He also details the campaigns that were fought.

The book is well written, but very detailed, and wouldn’t be for everyone. I enjoyed it very much.

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About Ann Marie Thomas

Married since 1974, Christian since 1986, 4 children, 4 grand children, disabled with fibromyalgia but was working almost full time until a stroke in May 2010 changed my life completely. Writing poetry and making up stories since I was a child, I only started to write seriously when my children were grown. My main ambition is to write science fiction, but along the way I got distracted by local history and poetry about my stroke. Taking early retirement gave me the chance to concentrate on my writing. My book, Alina, The White Lady of Oystermouth, was published in print and ebook at Easter 2012. The success of Alina led to the publication of Broken Reed: The Lords of Gower and King John in September 2013, and The Magna Carta Story at Easter 2015. I am still writing science fiction - a series of novels called Flight of the Kestrel. For all my author news, see me author blog at www.annmariethomas.me.uk
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One Response to Writing Wednesday:The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes

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