The French Foreign Legion: A Complete History of the Legendary Fighting Force Info

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A complete history of the French Foreign Legion discusses the
Legion's fight against Algeria and Tunisia in the 1830s, the Carlist
Rebellion, the Crimean War, World War I, and other great battles

Average Ratings and Reviews
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4.03

240 Ratings

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Reviews for The French Foreign Legion: A Complete History of the Legendary Fighting Force:

5

Aug 04, 2013

Possibly the best history of the French Foreign Legion ever written. It is neither a glorification of the Legion's exploits, nor is it a condemnation of its shortfalls. It is an evenhanded treatment of the Legion's accomplishments, failures, traditions and its unique style of producing fighting men, who fight not for France, but for the Legion. Porch's writing style is eminently readable and not in the least dry... as many military historians can be.
5

Jul 21, 2007

One of my favorite books, superbly researched and well written, and unbelievably funny at times. This is the model for what an institutional history should be for any military organization.
3

Nov 11, 2016

Porch presents an academic study of the French Foreign Legion which is comprised of foreigners serving in France's military. While fairly comprehensive, drawbacks includes the extensive use of French terms and a tendency to use large words. The historic facts are informative though the work is a difficult read for the average person.
4

Jan 03, 2014

The book is an excellent history of the Legion from its beginnings to just before the first Gulf War. the Legion has been one the best fighting forces in history. Also one the most devastated from Mexico to Bir Hakeem to Dien Bien Phu. The book did temper the romanticism I held the Legion, but all in all a Good read for those interested in the subject.
5

Jul 30, 2017

This legendary fighting force has no equal. Their reputation is well earned. Their march through history has been with bloody foot prints. A great read.
4

Oct 08, 2017

An exhaustive (and sometimes exhausting) history of that legendary offshoot of France's military establishment. As befitting a book which clocks in at 744 pages, Porch covers every angle of the Legion's establishment, growth, mid-life crises and decline and never hides the glories and hells through which it and the polyglot group of many nationalities that comprise it lived and fought. He doesn't shirk from praise and certainly not from laying blame for failures both on the incompetence of An exhaustive (and sometimes exhausting) history of that legendary offshoot of France's military establishment. As befitting a book which clocks in at 744 pages, Porch covers every angle of the Legion's establishment, growth, mid-life crises and decline and never hides the glories and hells through which it and the polyglot group of many nationalities that comprise it lived and fought. He doesn't shirk from praise and certainly not from laying blame for failures both on the incompetence of commanders, the blind interference of politicians, the weakening of the fighting force from desertion and laxity as well as expounding on the intolerable conditions in which they had to fight. It does become repetitious at times and Porch's penchant for completeness does lead to the inclusion of just too many statistics necessary to make a point but overall, he's successful in debunking the mythical "Legion" as portrayed in novels and films and laying out the story of the real Legion, warts and all. ...more
4

Nov 07, 2017

Long, extensively researched. Can get repetitious discussing desertion, etc. Unfortunately ends in the 1960's and doesn't cover more modern events.
3

Mar 04, 2017

Wow, I finished it. A very detailed history of the French foreign Legion. It was slow in parts but very informative.
4

Feb 16, 2016

Well written, deeply researched history of the famous fighting force. Chapters covering the Legion's early exploits in the 1830s and 1840s were a bit slow, but the pace picked up as the narrative moved into the 20th century. The final part of the book, covering the Legion's exploits in Indochina and Algeria, was actually the most interesting. Recommended for serious readers of history.
4

Dec 26, 2013

A good though long book. The writer was able to get the detail about right.
4

Aug 29, 2011

A good book on the Foriegn legion goes into just enough details and give enough anecdotes to be fun.

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