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Tuesday, 20 February 2018

A birthday present from an old friend

It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago, and a good old friend of mine - Tony Hawkins - sent me a copy of GLADSTONE, GORDON AND THE SUDAN WARS: THE BATTLE OVER IMPERIAL INTERVENTION IN THE VICTORIAN AGE as a present.


The book was written by Fergus Nicholl, and is a reappraisal of the roles played by both men in the Sudan Crisis. As such it is a nice counterpoint to the generally accepted view that Gordon was the hero and Gladstone the villain, whereas the truth is not at all that cut-and-dried.

I am about halfway through reading this book, and I must admit that it has certainly given me pause for thought at times. I'd certainly recommend it to anyone who wants to have a better understanding of the political situation in the UK at the time, and it would be ideal reading for anyone who ever wanted to take part in the SAVE GORDON! Matrix Game.

GLADSTONE, GORDON AND THE SUDAN WARS: THE BATTLE OVER IMPERIAL INTERVENTION IN THE VICTORIAN AGE was written by Fergus Nicholl and published by Pen & Sword Military in 2013 (ISBN 978 1 781 59182 6).

Coincidentally, General Charles Gordon was born in a house on Woolwich Common, ...


... and less than half a mile away in Whitworth Road is the site where Gladstone gave his last speech to his Greenwich constituents on 30th November, 1878. The site is now occupied by Eglinton Primary School, and a plaque commemorating the event ...


... is fixed to one of its walls.


6 comments:

  1. Hi Bob,

    That looks like a book that is certainly right up your street! If I could expand on the point you made about 'a better understanding of the political situation in the UK at the time' I would say that I always make a point of reading around the political and social backdrop to the campaigns I am fighting. I am a firm believer in 'rounding out' the period in question as it all adds to the flavour.

    It is not my period per se but it is exactly the sort of thing I would read in support so to speak.

    A belated happy birthday as well!

    All the best,

    DC

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    1. David Crook,

      Thanks for the best wishes.

      Understanding the background to why things happen helps to ensure that a campaign - and even a 'one-off' battle - makes sense. Even as a solo player, knowing that background helps to make any decisions one arrives at more historically valid.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  2. Bob, once again your blog proves a fruitful source for suggested book purchases. Thank you.

    The Kindle version of this one has gone onto my "Military, History and Wargaming" wishlist on Amazon.

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    1. Mike Hall,

      I only wish that I was able to earn commission on the books etc., that I mention on my blog; if I did, I'd be a rich man by now!

      Seriously though, I have found the way that this book has made me think about the context in which the whole Gordon affair took place quite eye-opening. I thought that I knew a lot more than I actually did ... and it certainly has helped to expand my understanding of events.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. Well, you probably could set yourself up as an Amazon affiliate and include links to Amazon in your blog posts. I don't think you'd get rich though!

      The book's "look inside" sample that I read plus your latest comment has resulted in it moving from my wish list to my kindle (well actually to a couple of tablets as well as I mostly read non fiction on bigger screens in case there are any illustrations/maps). All that is now needed is for it to rise to the top of my TBR list.

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    3. Mike Hall,

      I have been approached (with promises of 'substantial income') to put averts on my blog, but I have resisted because I want to be seen as independent from any outside influences,

      Like you, I tend to read fiction on my Kindle and non-fiction on my iPad (or in printed form) because I find illustrations are easier to access on the larger screen.

      I hope that you enjoy the book when you read it.

      All the best,

      Bob

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