Chandler’s massive tome on every campaign Napoleon conducted makes a great one-stop shop for a basic military history of any action you may want to look up. This is aided by lucid accounts all the way through, good maps (which are present in the Kindle version too—if a trifle small on my screen), and thoughtful brief analysis of each one.

All of this means it’s still the primary reference for the period nearly sixty years after it was first published; a feat very few other books can claim. It is highly likely no other book will ever combine the relatively introductory nature and comprehensiveness of this one and do it better. This does come at a price—the individual campaigns are covered at something approaching the level of an Osprey Campaign book, and this weighs in at ~1100 pages, with a smaller proportion than normal given over to appendixes, references, bibliography, etc.

There are some limits. As this is the Campaigns of Napoleon, as opposed to ‘the Napoleonic period’, there’s extremely little discussion of the Peninsular War, naval actions, or any campaign not directly involving the star of the show (I would like to see something on the French Revolutionary campaigns in Germany, that Napoleon’s campaigns in Italy were supposed to be a sideshow to). And it’s still 1100+ pages, so not losing focus in this volume is for the best.

And it’s not just the campaigns either. He goes into Napoleon’s background and early training at École Militaire, and spends a nice little bit of time on where his ideas on warfare came and were developed from; that is certainly a nicely informative chapter.

I’ll note the Kindle version has certainly been gone over, and there’s a minimum of errors, though a lot slipped through in the confusion of if a number should be a Roman numeral ‘I’ or an Arabic ‘1’ (there is one rendering of “IIth”), and Blücher gets rendered as “Blöcher” twice. Outside of that, the text is in very good shape.