The first of two ground-breaking volumes on the Waterloo campaign, this audiobook is based upon a detailed analysis of sources old and new in four languages. It highlights the political stresses between the Allies, the problems of feeding and paying for the Allied forces assembling in Belgium during the undeclared war and how a strategy was thrashed out.
It studies the neglected topic of how the Allies beyond the Rhine hampered the plans of Blücher and Wellington, thus allowing Napoleon to snatch the initiative from them. Napoleon's operational plan is likewise analysed and the way in which Soult misinterpreted it and accounts from both sides help provide a vivid impression of the fighting on the first day, 15 June. This volume ends with the joint battles of Ligny and Quatre Bras the next day.