Books about France

Browse our
recommended books


Books - France
The Last Throw of the Dice - Bourbaki and Werder in Eastern France 1870-71, Quintin Barry. Looks at the last French attempt to inflict a significant defeat on the invading Germans during the Franco-Prussian War, when their army of the East was sent to try and lift the siege of Belfort, threaten the German lines of communications and possibly even turn north to try and lift the siege of Paris. Traces how the ambitious campaign floundered, saw the French suffer a defeat against a smaller German army at the Lisaine and were eventually force to flee into internment in Switzerland, just as the entire war was coming to an end (Read Full Review)
The Siege that Changed the World – Paris 1870-1871, NS ‘Tank’ Nash. A detailed study of the Prussian led siege of Paris of 1870-71, combined with a more general look at the entire Franco-Prussian War. Does a good job of putting the siege within the context of the wider war, as well as looking at the military and civilian aspects of life in Paris under siege, the problems faced by the Germans, and the attempts to raise new armies across unoccupied France (Read Full Review)
Touring the Sedan Campaign, Maarten Otte. Focuses on the Sedan campaign, but also includes two chapters on how the French got into the mess that led them to that disaster, as well as the march to Sedan and the battle itself, turning it into a useful history of the first part of the Franco-Prussian War, combined with a good guide to the campaign and battle areas, built around two car tours and three walking tours. (Read Full Review)
French Destroyers 1922-1956, John Jordan & Jean Moulin. A splendid study of the French Torpilleurs d'escadre and Contre-Torpilleurs (large 'super destroyers') of the interwar period, impressive warships that had limited wartime careers. Covers both the technical features of the ships and their service careers, supported by excellent plans and contemporary photographs. I can’t imagine anyone every publishing a more detailed book on this topic in English. [read full review]
cover cover cover
The French Religious Wars 1562-1598, Robert Jean Knecht. A useful guide to the complex series of nine French Wars of Religion, including an examination of who the wars began and the main players on both sides, narrative accounts of the wars, overviews of the most important battles and sieges. Also looks at the impact of the wars on France’s neighbours, many of whom got dragged into the conflict, and on a selection of soldiers and civilians. Supported by a series of maps that help show how complex the conflict was
French Foreign Legionnaire, 1890-1914, Martin Windrow. A study of the French Foreign Legionnaire in the quarter of a century before the outbreak of the First World War, a period that saw them fight in North Africa and Vietnam. Looks at the recruitment, training, daily life and combat experience of one of the most famous and most notorious of military units. [read full review]
cover cover cover
Marshal Vauban and the Defence of Louis XIV's France, James Falkner. A biography of the famous French military engineer, whose fortifications dominated many French towns for centuries after his death. Vauban was both a builder and besieger of fortifications, and this biography looks at both his defensive work, where he created a strongly defended border, and his military career, where by his own count he was involved in over fifty major sieges. [read full review]
cover cover cover
French Foreign Legion 1872-1914, Martin Windrow This is an excellent little book although only 48 pages long (standard size for osprey men at arms books) it covers a wide ranging period of this legendary military unit. Packed with colour plates of uniforms and equipment as well as line drawings, contemporary photographs and maps it’s a great introduction to both this famous unit and the French colonial wars. The book covers from 1872 up till the start of World War I so covers a wide range of conflicts in South East Asia (including Vietnam which was to be such a graveyard of French forces after World War II) and North and West Africa. [read full review]
cover cover cover
Fighting for the French Foreign Legion: Memoirs of a Scottish Legionnaire, Alex Lochrie. A valuable account of life in the Legion during the period when it became an official part of the French armed forces, covering the selection process, training, and the Legion's involvement in peacekeeping in Africa and Bosnia as well as Operation Desert Storm. [read full review]

cover cover cover

Help - F.A.Q. - Contact Us - Search - Recent - About Us - Privacy