Top positive review
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Great Story Telling
on 19 May 2002
Mark Urban has added another great book to the many titles competing to be placed in a Napoleonic library. This book, 'The Man Who Broken Napoleon's Codes' covers a little known and written of subject, the story of George Scovell. This man had as much to do with the British victories in Spain as did Wellington although you would not know it if you read any previous accounts of the Peninsular War.
George Scovell helped break the French Imperial codes and provided much useful intelligence to Wellington in his campaigns against the French armies. But since Scovell was of low birth he struggled for advancement. He showed his bravery on a number of battlefields but was almost always forgotten when it came to promotion, being passed over by younger men of more distinguished birth.
I must admit that I was a bit dubious when I started reading this book as I usually find accounts on code breaking and intelligence quite dull and boring however this book reads like a novel. Full of information with a narrative that races along, it was a great story and full of action. The book covers all the major campaigns and battles in the Peninsular and was a joy to read. I have no hesitation in recommending this book to anyone who loves reading about the Napoleonic period.