Napoleon - A Novel
The Song of Departure

By Max Gallo
Translated from the French by William Hobson
December 2004
Macmillan
ISBN: 0330436066
410 pages, 4 " x 7"
$15.95 Paper Original


On 15 May 1779 the pale and aloof son of a prominent but poor Corsican family arrives at the gates of a military school in eastern France. Barely able to speak French, and fiercely proud of his Genoese heritage, it will nevertheless take Napoleon Bonaparte just twenty years to become absolute ruler of the country he once saw as his oppressor, and the dominant military force in Europe.

In this masterful blend of history and imagination, the author brilliantly describes Napoleon's early life, his struggles and his glorious victories. Starting with Napoleon's five years in military school, its cold and alien atmosphere exacerbated by his school-mates' constant bullying and his total isolation from his family, this book shows the first faltering steps of the man who would become the Little Emperor. A major bestseller in Europe, this book is the first step in the author's spellbinding and passionate quartet of novels.

Napoleon's desire, his courage and his determination are all brought exhilaratingly to life, together with his overwhelming passion for Josephine. Set against the backdrop of the murderous unpredictability of revolutionary politics, and the battlefields of Italy, Egypt and France, this book is a compelling, convincing and exciting journey into the heart of one of the most intriguing men in history.


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