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Publisher's Summary

It is December 1878, and war looms on the horizon in South Africa. British high commissioner Sir Henry Bartle-Frere seeks to dismantle the powerful neighboring kingdom of the Zulus and uses an incursion along the disputed border as his justification for war. He issues an impossible ultimatum to the Zulu king, Cetshwayo, demanding he disband his armies and pay massive reparations. With a heavy heart, the king prepares his nation for war against their former allies.
Leading the invasion is Lieutenant General Sir Frederic Thesiger, Baron Chelmsford, a highly experienced officer fresh off a decisive triumph over the neighboring Xhosa tribes. He and Frere are convinced that a quick victory over the Zulus will negate any repercussions from the home government for launching what is, in essence, an illegal war.
Recently arrived to South Africa are newly recruited privates Arthur Wilkinson and Richard Lowe, members of C Company, 1/24th Regiment of Foot under the venerable Captain Reginald Younghusband. Eager for adventure, they are prepared to do their duty both for the empire and for their friends.
As Frere's ultimatum expires, the army of British redcoats and allied African auxiliaries crosses the uMzinyathi River at Rorke's Drift into Zululand. Ten days later the British and Zulus will meet their destiny at the base of a mountain called Isandlwana.
©2016 James M. Mace (P)2017 James M. Mace
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Customer Reviews

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By Amazon Customer nutbutter on 12-11-17

great story

great story about some truly heroic deeds an men. War is never a pretty thing,never like tv. But men can aspire to some awe inspiring moments at such times. This book ,I think captured it greatly

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

By Margaret on 11-24-17

Wonderful glimpse into history

I love well researched and well written historical fiction and this book is exactly that. How much of the personality, behavior and opinions of the characters is true to history... I don't know. What I do know is, that each character was written in a truly believable manner that was engaging and kept me on the edge of my earbuds wanting to know how their role, in this part of history, would unfold. The story was written with glimpses into the actions and beliefs/ motivations of many characters.
The story was told through the people on both sides of the conflict. The details describing the harsh conditions and battles were enough for me to feel for those involved and get a sense of the tragic affair without being too overly gory.
I have never seen any of the movies or learned much about the Anglo-Zulu wars.

I want to listen to the next book! I would definitely read/ listen to another by this author.

The narrator did a wonderful job with the voices and bringing life to the story. I am not an expert on the Zulu language but I think he did a great job pronouncing the Zulu words and names and phrases. He spoke them without stumbling or hesitation which made them sound all the more correct.

I was given this free, review copy audiobook at my request and voluntarily left this unbiased review.

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Customer Reviews

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By Kevin McSweeney on 11-23-17


A Wonderful insight into a well known battle brilliantly told. The characters became very real.

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By Mr. Alan R. Jenkins on 11-22-17

The Greatest British Defeat Explained

Thoroughly engaging audio book, which compelled me to buy the follow on book 2. The battle at Isandlwana is well known and well documented; however, this book treats the subject with an air of personal empathy and deals with the two sides equally well both prior to, during and after the battle.

Overall the book is well presented and the story clearly compelling; its one shortfall may well be the performance, which I found a tiny bit overly theatrical at times (but I can only compliment Jonathan Waters on his reading).

The personal stories blended well with the objective of the book; and brought to light a couple of items that in the film "Zulu Dawn" that were not dealt with; and indeed highlighted some of the errors that are contained within that same film production. This book helps put the record straight from the point of view of the film production.

The language is crude but appropriate in places; and this is what gives the book that personal reflective tone rather than reading (or listening) to a non-fiction historical book.

Worth a listen; and not excessively long, so you will not get unduly tired of it.

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