Jeff's Reviews > Napoleon

Napoleon by Paul  Johnson
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Feb 16, 14

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My review is addressed to others who have reviewed this book and found it too short or not detailed enough.

What the hell were you expecting? The Penguin Lives series is not supposed to be a definitive set of authoritative biographies of eminent personages. The point of Penguin Lives (and other short biography series) is to give a great writer an excuse to read a whole bunch of (over)long biographies and then give us, the reader, their considered thoughts on the life and times of the subject. Exhaustive detail would only get in the way of the main purpose of this book (and others like it), which is to elaborate on how the major events in their lives informed the character of the subject.

Even if these sort of short biographies aren't your cup of tea, as a reviewer you should strive to judge a book on its own terms.
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Nick Agreed. And Goodreads gives everyone a chance to criticize books even when they are entirely unqualified to be critics.


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