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Black Rock: the story of an island, an exile and an emperor

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Should ambition cease with death? Napoleon Bonaparte doesn't think so. His ghost is actually hungrier than ever. The ex-emperor has no intention of allowing his premature end to thwart his destiny or threaten his legacy. But death holds unexpected surprises for the restless spirit of the nineteenth-century's most infamous tactician.

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Should ambition cease with death? Napoleon Bonaparte doesn't think so. His ghost is actually hungrier than ever. The ex-emperor has no intention of allowing his premature end to thwart his destiny or threaten his legacy. But death holds unexpected surprises for the restless spirit of the nineteenth-century's most infamous tactician.

Should ambition cease with death? Napoleon Bonaparte doesn't think so. His ghost is actually hungrier than ever. The ex-emperor has no intention of allowing his premature end to thwart his destiny or threaten his legacy. But death holds unexpected surprises for the restless spirit of the nineteenth-century's most infamous tactician. Set in 1821 on the remote Atlantic island of St Helena during the week between Napoleon's death and burial, this historical who-done-it examines what powerful men do in narrowed circumstances and what ordinary people do when their lives collide with the exceptional. Louise Hoole, who lived on St Helena as a child, draws upon the letters and memoirs of those exiled on the island to bring to life the complex machinations of those who made up Napoleon's last court.

Winner of the 2015 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold for cover design, fiction.

Specifications

Publisher
Barranca Press
Book Format
Paperback
Number of Pages
228
Author
Louise Hoole
ISBN-13
9781939604248
Publication Date
March, 2014
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.00 x 5.00 x 0.52 Inches
ISBN-10
1939604249

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Louise Hoole, Barranca...

Louise Hoole, Barranca Press, March 2014, I saw no pricing information, hb, 212pp, 9781939604255 In 1815, Napoleon was exiled to the island of St. Helena, in the southern Atlantic Ocean. In May of 1821 he died there. Black Rock is the story of the days following the death of Napoleon, told by Napoleon's ghost. He watches his own autopsy, marveling at his layers of fat, curious about the disagreement between the English doctors and his own Antommarchi over whether his liver was enlarged or not. The ghost is surprised at the reading of his will that his son and wife were not mentioned. Did he forget them when he re-wrote the document, burning with fever, or has someone meddled with his will? Napoleon's ghost discovers that the men who stayed by his side until the end, Montholon, Gourgaud, Marchand and Bertrand, are not the loyal, obsequious men he thought them to be. In fact, he starts to believe that one of them may have murdered him. Black Rock is a slow-moving, detailed look at the days between Napoleon's death and the departure of the emperor's entourage from their island prison. Napoleon's ghost is an arrogant, unlikeable narrator, and the other characters are not much more appealing. The pace of the story picks up when the idea of arsenic poisoning is revealed. The eventual exhumation of Napoleon's body, narrated by the son of Bertrand, along with the author's historical notes, help to explain the curiosity of Napoleon's death. For me, this made the ending of the book quite satisfying.

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