The Girl Who Fought Napoleon (2016): Linda Lafferty

★★★½

A novel of the Russian Empire

This book is one for those who were taken by the BBC’s recent production of War and Peace. It sweeps from the glittering salons of the upper classes in St Petersburg, where French language and culture reign supreme, to the brutal bleakness of the battlefields on which Russian soldiers fight to hold back the steady creep of French imperial ambition. At the heart of this novel – based, I should emphasise, on a fascinating true story – are two characters whose experiences offer complementary perspectives on the situation.

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