Bircorn - The ties of Blood Peninsular War Novels
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Alone With Glory
The Colour of Blood
A Different Kind of War
The Hardest Fight
The Blast of War
Even To The Knife
The Other Side of the Hill
The Dawn's Early Light
A Battle Lost and Won
Take, Burn or Destroy
A Dozen Bakers
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Napoleonic Days

Putting heat under the cold facts of History

Welcome to the website of Bicorn Books, publisher of the acclaimed Ties of Blood series of novels, written by Peter Youds, and now the new series, The River Trilogy.

STOP PRESS There are eleven Ties of Blood titles in print (see list left) plus two River Trilogy novels (PROMISE and DESIRE You can also get all of these books on Kindle via Amazon. Click here for details.

If you do read on Kindle, please don't forget to star-rate the books and maybe add a review.

A DOZEN BAKERS, is Peter's first collection of short stories, also available in hard copy or Kindle

EAST MIDLANDS NAPOLEONIC DAYS - Click here for details


The latest Ties of Blood novel, TAKE, BURN OR DESTROY is a prequel highlighting the early lives and loves of some of readers' favourite characters. Book number 10 in the series, it might be condidered the first tale and could be a good place for new readers to start!

The Waterloo novel, A BATTLE LOST AND WON (9) followed THE DAWN'S EARLY LIGHT (8), which featured the often poorly-documented but fascinating WAR OF 1812. This tale included the burning of Washington, Canada saved, disaster for the British at New Orleans! Like each title in the series, these books were published to mark the bicentenary of the events they portray. TAKE, BURN OR DESTROY breaks this pattern, dealing with events on three continents, 1805-7.


2008 marked the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the Peninsular War, a bitter six-year conflict which Napoleon described as "The Spanish Ulcer". 2008 also saw the appearance of the first Ties of Blood novel, ALONE WITH GLORY, featuring the great drama of the Corunna campaign.

Ties of Blood is an ambitious series which tells the story of the Peninsula, America and Waterloo through the adventures of an extraordinary cast of characters, real and imagined. As well as gripping descriptions of battles, sieges and skirmishes, the novels offer a unique insight into the everyday lives and loves of those who found themselves caught up in the struggle - men and women, soldiers and civilians.

Following years of research, Peter's aim has been to bring the truly amazing stories of the Napoleonic Wars to life in a way that is fun for the reader, tells a tale, but also contrives to cast light on the genuine history of this fascinating period.

The more recent River Trilogy moves on several decades to look at the early years of Queen Victoria's reign, when Great Britain was developing at an astonishing rate, in its population, wealth, industry and international reach. Equally astonishing was the persistent poverty, ignorance and poor health of much of the population.

This site is intended to help visitors learn more about the Ties of Blood series and the new River Trilogy books, but also to interest them in the the times - military, political and social. You can find out what is behind the books (as well as other interesting bits and pieces, such as how the people lived, the food they ate, health, how they dressed, their relationships, words, more books you can read - and so on).

Ties of Blood

ALONE WITH GLORY is the first in the series and was published in October 2008.

THE COLOUR OF BLOOD was published in July 2009.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF WAR was published in August 2010.

THE HARDEST FIGHT was published in May 2011.

THE BLAST OF WAR was published in April 2012.

EVEN TO THE KNIFE was published in June 2013.

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE HILL was published in April 2014.

THE DAWN'S EARLY LIGHT was published in December 2014.

A BATTLE LOST AND WON was published in June 2015.

TAKE, BURN OR DESTROY was published in late November 2016.

A DOZEN BAKERS a selection of short stories, was published in March 2018.

The River Trilogy

PROMISE was published in February 2020.

DESIRE was published in March 2021.


"Have a look at Peter Youds' series - these are not Sharpe imitations; instead they follow the experiences of a group of linked characters throughout the events of the war. He presents not just the British viewpoint, but also that of Spanish and Portuguese characters in the struggle against the French.
I thoroughly recommend the books."

Carole Divall, author "Redcoats Against Napoleon"

"Alone With Glory paints a broad picture of the Peninsular War: the forces of Sir Arthur Wellesley and Sir John Moore are there, but so too are those of Spain and Portugal. That redoubtable duo, Sharpe and Harper, are going to have to look to their laurels!"

Charles Esdaile, author "The Peninsular War"

"Alone With Glory is an enjoyable read, with likeable characters and despicable villains. It moves at a fast pace and leaves the reader with an accurate picture of the confusion and hardships of the campaign of 1808/9.
I look forward to the next book in the series."

Robert Burnham, author "Inside Wellington's Peninsular Armies"

"Peter combines military history with the adventures of several members of two families who feature in each of the novels. They are all well-written, with amusing as well enlightening asides. That's where fiction can have an edge on straight history."

Napoleonic Wars Forum

© Peter Youds 2018