Picked this one up in a second hand bookstore. A very interesting read, as it follows the 21st regiment of foot (RWF) through 10 years in the Americas, during the fight for American independance which highlights mostly all that was intitailly wrong with the Brtish Army at the time, and how long it took them to weed out bad officers, men and above all tactics. Incidently most of the serving officers of the 21st Foot at the time thought they had never lost a major battle against the continental army in the field. They actually blamed the loosing of the campaign on the home politics, the ministry and initially the poor British generalship at the time in the Army hierarchy. (nothing new there). Other contributing factors were ascribed as the immense size of the continent, logistics (Food and transport), poor medical care, climate, disease, soldier attrition and a never ending supply of continental reinforcements that made the campaign eventually unwinable. Then at the conclusion of the campaign once the fighting was over and the remains of the British fighting army returned back to British shores they were subjected to ravages of the British Armies arcane leadership thinking once again. The self serving dandy type senior stay at home officers when back in control of this veteran fighting army started to stamp thier authority back on these troops by insisting that they knew best. So the new tactics and troop deployments so recently learned in war at such high cost were once again superceded. So back in came close order marching and high density fighting formations that took ages to form up and were unwieldy and inflexible and were useless against the effects of cannon fire. So out went the highly succesful lose order drill, the formation of light companies and flanking companies with frontal screens that brought good intelligence, safety and fast fluid movements that allowed independant reactive response to local events either defensive or offensive. These were developed by the trial and error on the campaign and the need to conserve losses during the long war of attrition.
Very good insight into the times from the loosing side, not the American winning version.