Many Regency romances are set against the dramatic backdrop of an island nation fighting for its very survival against a messianic European man bent on world domination.
(Echoes of World War II? Who says history doesn’t repeat itself!)
At the height of the conflicts with Napoleon, a French invasion of England was a real threat. In an interesting article on her website, author and Regency researcher Nancy Mayer blogs about the fear of invasion that swept the island nation, and the defense measures taken, including the building of a string of Martello towers.
Napoleon’s 1814 defeat, abdication, and exile to the island of Elba was a tremendous relief to the European powers who could go about the business of carving up power peaceably at the Congress of Vienna.
But the peace was short-lived. On February 26, 1815, Napoleon and an entourage of some 600 followers boarded ships and sailed for France, landing on March 1st. On March 20th he marched into Paris, beginning the Hundred Days of his new rule.
If, like me, you’re a writer and/or fan of Regency romances, or just a fan of European history, you can follow Napoleon’s path to Waterloo and the reactions of his contemporaries on Fernando Souza’s Pastnow site. Souza draws on letters, diaries and other sources to bring this period of history to life.
Both the hero of my novella, Rosalyn’s Ring, and the hero of my novel, Bella’s Band, served in Wellington’s Army and fought at the Battle of Waterloo, so well depicted in Georgette Heyer’s, An Infamous Army. Author Mary Balogh has written a wonderful series, the “Survivor Club” series, each book telling the story of a wounded Napoleonic War survivor. Can you think of others?