When this book was first published in 1971 the opening paragraph of the blurb read: 'You could fill a library with books about the Crimean War, and that, paradoxically, is why this book has been written. For in this library you would find exhaustive histories, some reaching to several volumes; you would find biographies, commentaries, diaries and treatises written from this angle and from that ' but you would not find a single concise volume, a straightforward and objective account of the war covering the peripheral theatres as well as the Crimean itself, giving all the fundamental facts, yet pleading no special cause. This book aims to fill that gap.'Now, over thirty years later, that remains substantially true. The next paragraph began: 'The battlefields round Sevastopol are at present inaccessible, even to Russian tourists.' Happily this is no longer true, and a number of agencies take tours to the battlefields of the Crimea.
As the illustrations in this book were originally selected with the intention of making the reader familiar with the topography of the siege and the battles of Balaclava, Inkerman and the Chernaya, it will prove an invaluable asset to anyone visiting the Crimea.