This was a really well written and entertaining book. However, the author presupposes a lot of prior knowledge which I sadly lacked, making some of the material a bit challenging - probably not the best choice of read for the inexperienced but I have learned a great deal from reading it. There is a good chance that I'll do so again.
I was a bit disappointed by the balance of the content. I felt there is a disproportionate ammount of text devoted to the social history of the period and too little on the meaty political and military events, e.g the wars of the French revolution. I also thought that given that the book does not flow in strict chronological order then it would have really benefited from the inclusion of a simple summary chapter or timeline - something I think newbies to this period of European history would find very useful. That said, I still highly recommend it to anyone.