Allan Mallinson Books In Order

Matthew Hervey Books In Publication Order

  1. A Close Run Thing (1999)
  2. The Nizam’s Daughters / Honorable Company (2000)
  3. A Regimental Affair (2001)
  4. A Call to Arms (2002)
  5. The Sabre’s Edge (2003)
  6. Rumours of War (2004)
  7. An Act of Courage (2005)
  8. Company of Spears (2006)
  9. Man of War (2007)
  10. Warrior (2008)
  11. On His Majesty’s Service (2011)
  12. Words of Command (2015)
  13. The Passage to India (2018)
  14. The Tigress of Mysore (2020)

Non-Fiction Books In Publication Order

  1. Light Dragoons (2006)
  2. The Making Of The British Army (2009)
  3. 1914 (2013)
  4. Too Important for the Generals (2016)
  5. Fight to the Finish (2019)

Anthologies In Publication Order

  1. Great Commanders of the Modern World, 1866-Present Day (2009)

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Allan Mallinson Books Overview

A Close Run Thing

In the tradition of Patrick O’Brian’s beloved historical military adventures comes the first in a dashing new series featuring Cornet Matthew Hervey, a young cavalry officer in Wellington’s army of 1815. A Close Run ThingFor two decades, since the French Revolution, England and her allies have fought a seemingly endless war to loosen Bonaparte’s stranglehold on Europe. Matthew Hervey, a twenty three year old parson’s son, has risen through the ranks of His Majesty’s cavalry to a junior command in the 6th Light Dragoons. Torn by ambition and ensnared in the intrigues of Wellington’s army, Matthew struggles to shape his destiny, but his efforts are about to be cast to the winds of fate. For amid the clash of armies, he will find himself a catalyst in the battle of the century…
near the small Belgian village of Waterloo.

The Nizam’s Daughters / Honorable Company

In a rousing follow up to the critically acclaimed A Close Run Thing, Captain Matthew Hervey makes the hazardous sea voyage to India for what the Duke of Wellington has called deuced tricky work.

As Wellington’s new aide de camp, Matthew s covert mission will embroil him in the jostling of native potentates and England s encroaching East India Company both threatened by lawless bands of horseme*n bent on plunder and massacre.

When Matthew s journeying leads him to the small key state of Chintal, he thinks himself close to his objective. But at the rajah s sumptuous court, he discovers that war in India is waged as often with money and spies as with the clear cut tactics of the battlefield with battles won through devious conversations and murderous perfidy. And Matthew, torn between his honor and his destiny, is drawn deeper into the court s serpentine coils than he ever dreamed…

A Regimental Affair

ALLAN MALLINSON S A Close Run Thing and Honorable Company stirred readers and critics with the military adventures of young Captain Matthew Hervey at the Battle of Waterloo and amid the harsh terrain and treacherous intrigues of India. Now, in 1817, Hervey returns to an England whose hard won peace is shaken by the distress and discord of its people. And even as he is caught up in the turbulent dawn of a new era, he must combat a deliberate attempt to orchestrate his own ruin.

The honors he won in India fell short of Captain Matthew Hervey’s deepest desire to return to his beloved 6th Light Dragoons. But now circumstances allow him to resume command of the unit and to marry the beautiful Lady Henrietta Lindsay, whom he has loved since childhood. Meanwhile, however, his soldier s heart is pierced by the sight of men in British scarlet crippled in the service of king and country, now forgotten and cast off, reduced to begging and petty crime. It is no wonder that rabble rousers clamor for reform and that lawlessness is erupting everywhere, from the cities to the countryside.

As for Hervey s own cavalry, guarding Regency Brighton and ambushing French smugglers in midnight coves, he finds them, too, vastly changed. Their new lieutenant colonel, Lord Towcester, is a cold eyed martinet vain, inept, and bigoted who cares less for the welfare of his men than for keeping the shine on their gleaming brass buttons. Moreover, it soon becomes clear that he will stop at nothing to bring about Hervey s disgrace and downfall. For in this young officer, a war hero and former aide de camp to the Duke of Wellington, Towcester sees all that he himself once forfeited through cowardice.

But the scandal that haunts Towcester is an old and secret one and to expose it would cost Hervey his rank, the command of his beloved Sixth and the means to support his radiant, passionate bride. Even the charming and determined Henrietta, not above a little politicking in high places to right wrongs, is unable to diplomatically put a stop to Towcester s vendetta.

As the Industrial Revolution builds and food riots give way to rioting Luddite mobs, Hervey s troop is posted to counter the threat of a general insurrection. But his field tactics and peacekeeping vision are jeopardized by enemies both within and without. And then fate calls his regiment to the dark frozen wastes of a distant frontier, where another people s way of life is being destroyed by the march of change, and where tragedy and bloodshed will force a showdown between Hervey and his nemesis.

A Regimental Affair is a stunning tapestry of vivid characters, rousing action, and authentic historical detail that re creates a world of polite English drawing rooms, poverty stricken London streets, and frozen battlefields, where human passion and blind fate give birth to the destiny of a nation and a hero.

From the Hardcover edition.

A Call to Arms

1817 and 1818 have not been good years for Matthew Hervey. His beloved wife Henrietta is dead and he is no longer in the Sixth regiment. Now he is kicking his heels in a corrupt and unruly England far removed from its once glorious past. 1819 sees Hervey in Rome with his sister Elizabeth where a chance meeting with man of letters Percy Bysshe Shelley leads him to rethink his future. Realizing just how much he misses the excitement of military action and the camaraderie of his regiment, Hervey hurriedly purchases a new commission and is refitted for the uniform of the 6th Light Dragoons. Hervey’s most immediate task is to raise a new troop and to organize transport, for his men and horses are to set sail for India with immediate effect.

What Hervey and his greenhorn soldiers cannot know is that in India they will face one of their toughest trials. A large number of Burmese warboats are being assembled near the headwaters of the river leading to Chittagong, and the only way to thwart their advance involves an arduous and hazardous march through jungle territory. What begins as a relatively simple operation becomes a journey into the heart of darkness, as Hervey and his troop find themselves in the midst of hot and bloody action once more.

From the Hardcover edition.

The Sabre’s Edge

India, 1824Matthew Hervey and the 6th Light Dragoons are stationed in India, where conflagration looks set to flair. The usurper prince, Durjan Sal, has taken refuge in the infamous fortress of Bhurtpore.A deep ditch, which can be flooded at a moment’s notice, runs round it and as its notorious Tower of Victory built with the skulls of defeated men bears witness, it has withstood all attacks made on it. Until now. Hot and dangerous work lies ahead for Matthew Hervey and his courageous troop who know their fortunes will be decided by the sabre s edge. Captain Matthew Hervey is as splendid a hero as ever sprang from an author s pen. The Times

Rumours of War

In Europe, Rumours of War are rife once again, as Matthew Hervey returns to the Peninsula to fight a new battle, and to confront the ghosts of his first campaign The year is 1826, and the fragile peace in Europe following the defeat of Napoleon is threatened by Spanish aggression in the Peninsula. Matthew Hervey, newly returned from India, joins a party of officers sent to make an as*sessment and lend support to their Portuguese allies. His place on the expedition is secured with the help and influence of his new friend, Lady Katherine Greville. But the Peninsula is a place redolent with memories. For it was here as a seventeen year old Cornet that Hervey had his first taste of military action. The French forces had pushed the British into an ignominious retreat, losing morale as quickly as ground, until under the leadership of Sir John Moore the army made a defiant stand at Corunna. In the epic battle that followed, Hervey and the Sixth Light Dragoons played their part in one of the Napoleonic War’s most famous military scenes. As the wave of the French onslaught broke against the solid rock of British resolve, the tide of war was turned once and for all in England s favour. Now, with the Spanish threatening the fortress at Elvas, and as Hervey makes ready for the battle once again, the sights and sounds of the Peninsula bring back a flood of memories. But it is not only Spanish aggression and ghosts from his past that Matthew must confront; Lady Katherine has arrived in the Peninsula and is looking for rewards in return for services rendered. From the Hardcover edition.

An Act of Courage

The seventh novel in the acclaimed and bestselling Matthew Hervey series finds Hervey alone and a prisoner in the fortress of Badajos on the Spanish border.

While Hervey taken captive in the final pages of The Sabre’s Edge plans his escape from the Spanish, his memories turn to 1812 when, as a young cornet, he was part of Wellington s victorious army as it pushed its way north through Spain towards the Pyrenees. But first the British had to storm the fortress where he is imprisoned now: Badajos a fortress of huge strategic importance where French resistance was at its most fierce and most bloody.

Both The Sabre s Edge and Rumours of War were Sunday Times bestsellers in hardcover.

Company of Spears

The eighth novel in the acclaimed and bestselling series finds Hervey on his way to South Africa where he is preparing to form a new body of cavalry, the Cape Mounted Rifles. All looks set fair for Major Matthew Hervey: news of a handsome legacy should allow him to purchase command of his beloved regiment, the 6th Light Dragoons. He is resolved to marry, and rather to his surprise, the object of his affections the widow of the late Sir Ivo Lankester has readily consented. But he has reckoned without the opportunism of a fellow officer with ready cash to hand; and before too long, he is on the lookout for a new posting. However, Hervey has always been well served by old and loyal friends, and Eyre Somervile comes to his aid with the means of promotion: there is need of a man to help reorganize the local forces at the Cape Colony, and in particular to form a new body of horse. At the Cape, Hervey is at once thrown into frontier skirmishes with the Xhosa and Bushmen, but it is Eyre Somervile’s instruction to range deep across the frontier, into the territory of the Zulus, that is his greatest test. Accompanied by the charming, cultured, but dissipated Edward Fairbrother, a black captain from the disbanded Royal African Corps and bast*ard son of a Jamaican planter, he makes contact with the legendary King Shaka, and thereafter warns Somervile of the danger that the expanding Zulu nation poses to the Cape Colony. The climax of the novel is the battle of Umtata River August 1828, in which Hervey has to fight as he has never fought before, and in so doing saves the life of the nephew of one of the Duke of Wellington s closest friends. From the Hardcover edition.

Man of War

War at sea: While Matthew Hervey is getting ready to re join his regiment in England, his close friend Captain Peto is at sea preparing his mighty line of battle ship for war with the Turks. 1827: Captain Peto has just taken command of HMS Prince Rupert, the only three decker line of battle ship in His Majesty’s Fleet a wooden fortress whose formidable firepower is the equal and more of Bonaparte s grand battery at Waterloo. But his journey to the Aegian, where Admiral Codrington s flagship awaits him, will not be smooth sailing, having as he does, a largely inexperienced crew. He s also been entrusted with the safe passage to Malta of the Admiral s youngest daughter a situation that is far from ideal for Peto and his crew.A year on, and Hervey is in London recovering from a recent bout of malaria. All is set fair for his upcoming marriage, and his subsequent return to active duty in the Cape. But trouble lies ahead as family commitments clash with affairs of the heart, and Hervey finds himself embroiled in a military enquiry that could result in public humiliation. As the cataclysmic sea battle of Navarino Bay looms ever closer for Peto and his crew, Hervey faces a regimental crisis that may be beyond even his capabilities.


In South Africa, Matthew Hervey clashes with the Warrior King of the Zulus. 1828: The stability of the Cape Colony has been threatened by Xhosa tribesmen who have been making incursions across the borders. And when Hervey is told by his old friend, Sir Eyre Somervile, that the Zulu Warrior king, Shaka, is about to make war on neighbouring tribes in the south of the country, he knows that matters are perilous indeed. Leaving his new wife and young daughter in England, Hervey speeds to his friend’s aid. He and Somervile journey to meet the Zulu king, but Shaka s royal kraal is a horrifying place. The sentinels at the gates are corpses, and it soon becomes apparent that Shaka has slaughtered thousands of his own people. Into this febrile atmosphere ride Hervey, Somervile and their escort of dragoons and mounted rifles. But the sudden death of the Zulu king plunges the region into civil war, and Hervey and his men into terrible danger. Yet worse is to come. As Hervey leads Shaka s queen across the veldt to safety, he knows he must cross an alien landscape where they will be hunted by wild animals and deadly Warriors. From the Hardcover edition.

Light Dragoons

Although only formed in December 1992, The Light Dragoons look back to a history that began in the days of the first Jacobite rebellion. The 1922 reduction in the Army saw the amalgamation of four regiments of Hussars into the 13th/18th Hussars and the 15th/19th Hussars. Now they too have been amalgamated.

Allan Mallinson, a former commanding officer of the 13th/18th Hussars, follows with clarity and dexterity the fortunes of The Light Dragoons‘ predecessors and describes the activities of the new regiment up to the minute. It reflects much of the last two hundred and seventy years of British history. No campaign of significance has been fought in that time without the participation of one or more of the Regiments.

They gained fresh honors in both World Wars and, since 1945, have been fully involved in Britain’s withdrawal from Empire, the confrontation of the Cold War and UN’s peacekeeping. The new Postscript gives the reader a classic account of what wars in Bosnia and Iraq have involved for the Regiment and the men who serve in it.

The Making Of The British Army

By acclaimed novelist, former cavalry officer and now the Daily Telegraph defence columnist, comes a timely and controversial history of the British Army from the 17th century to the present day. From the Hardcover edition.

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