- Author: Gabriele Esposito
- Illustrator: Giuseppe Rava
- Short code: CAM 342
- Publication Date: 31 Oct 2019
Following the successful reception of his Men At Arms titles on the armies of South America, Gabriele Esposito has brought us a concise overview of a momentously important but very little known (in the non Latin world) war.
The Paraguayan War or the war of the triple alliance occurred as a byproduct of a civil war in Uruguay that sucked into its struggle the states which orbited it.
Eventually Paraguay was pitted against Brazil, Uruguay & Argentina, & though at first tactically successful was broken & decimated by the end of what proved to be South America’s largest & costliest conflict.
Esposito’s book, illustrated by the gripping artwork of Giuseppe Rava, takes on a very complicated and understudied (in English) subject that spanned the years 1864 – 1870, was fought over at least four countries & involved multiple armies, politicians & generals from all sides overseeing over 100,000 men.
Though thorough, the scale of the subject is not met by the treatment, which must necessarily brush over events in order to paint the larger picture. As a campaign book that covers multiple campaigns, the work should perhaps have focused on the cataclysmic events leading up to the Battle of Tuyutí.
Osprey has commissioned books in this series that cover wide periods of time before. But most suffer, as a result, from a lack of detail that is usually relied on in Campaign titles to draw a reader in.
Single campaigns that carried on through several years suit the format best. The optimum is to focus on a single operation, and I fear that this title flounders for want of focus in such a small space.
Nevertheless this title is very welcome as a divergence from the usual subjects that are published in English & will doubtless be an excellent starting point for those interested in the military history of South America.