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Winter of the Eagle [Kindle Edition]

KM Campbell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

Kindle Price: $3.99
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  • Length: 247 pages (estimated)
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Book Description

"'Skirmish order,' shouted Sergeant Bernoit and, as his men moved off, he unslung his carbine and opened the priming pan to make sure that the powder was still in place.

With all their battle experience the company fanned out easily, and then, advancing over the brow of the ridge, they began the difficult scramble down the side of the ravine to engage the Russians again. Once there had been four battalions of the regiment, but starvation and disease had taken their toll during the long marches, and then there had been the appalling fighting before the redoubts at Borodino. At Moscow they had reorganised into two weak battalions and now, with the regiment part of Marshal Ney's rearguard, men were dying again."

Winter of the Eagle follows a company of an infantry battalion during the terrible retreat from Moscow in 1812. It brings to life the constant battles of the retreat and the conditions surrounding it - the weather, the ground, the landscape, not to mention the hunger, pain and fear - as well as memorable episodes like the tumult in the market in Smolensk, a wild chase in a troika, and the perilous crossing of the Dnieper river as the ice begins to crack.

The story of Winter of the Eagle is also the story of men caught up in the retreat: Sergeant Bernoit, small of stature but massive in authority, veteran of Valmy, Austerlitz and Spain; the officer Larguien whom Bernoit initially distrusts because of his youth and aristocratic mien; the cheerful, wily Corporal Necker; the dour 'Black Giant' MacDonald, the best shot in the regiment and feared by all; and finally Marshal Ney himself, a veritable hero to his soldiers, who commands one rearguard after another until he is literally the last man over the river Niemen and out of Russia.

Winter of the Eagle is a fine adventure story, compulsively readable, and an impressive historical novel with a real and vigorous sense of period and of war. It is also KM Campbell's first novel and a remarkable achievement both for the way it portrays the individual characters and paints the broad historical canvas which their different fates illustrate so vividly.

Product Details

  • File Size: 702 KB
  • Print Length: 247 pages
  • Publisher: (August 11, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,249,014 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy read, good historical fiction September 2, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This tells the story of Sergeant Bernoit, a soldier in Napoleon's Grande Armee, caught in the hell of the retreat from Moscow. Through historically accurate detail and vivid characterization, the slow disintegration of the once-proud French Army is brought to life. As men struggle to survive both the brutal Russian winter and the never-ending Russian attacks, they are affected in different ways. Some draw together, some strike out on their own, others prey on the weakness of their comrades. All have only one thought; get home. How Sergeant Bernoit brings the remnants of his company back to safety is a compulsively readable story - and quite thought provoking.
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