What a fascinating take on the life of Napoleon. Being familiar with his military wins and losses, world travels and imperialistic ambitions, Ive never really felt I understood the man. Christopher Hibber takes us into his familial sagas and personal relationships with not only wives and mistresses, but mother, sisters, sisters-in-law and innocent young women with whom he would not defame. I would recommend this to any historian who would like to fill out the full picture and to any non-historians who will find the high jinx as interesting as any soap opera.
Although this is more detailed than Delderfields Napoleon in Love, it is amazing that Hibbert was not sued for plagiarism. Delderfields work would have had to have been used as a direct outline for this book, but as extensive as the bibliography it, Delderfield is not listed even once.
One cannot deny that Napoleon: His Wives & Women is not only interesting reading, but also well researched & for the most part extremely well written. Yet, I still feel as if some reference should have been made to the former work.
The only thing that would have improved the actual reading would have been if the author could have reframed from repeating several passages through out the book, making it rather redundant (such as Napoleons habits of slapping people, or pinching their cheeks as a show of affection). The author also accepted some anecdotes &/or theories as fact (for example, the belief that Napoleon had epilepsy, or the supposed suicide attempt before being exiled.) or from dubious sources (e.g.: Napoleon: Bisexual Emperor by Frank Richardson.)