Wednesday 23 December 2020

BOOK REVIEW: Every bullet has its billet - late 17th century guide

 Hello guys,

I do not usually do book reviews on the blog, although I usually read books that have to do with our hobby. On this occasion, a company of which I am a regular customer, Helion Publishing has released a book written by Barry Hilton, a true enthusiast of the period, and a great expert on the subject , apart from that, I entered this period thanks to his publications and web page in 2013 (

Now 7 years after I entered this exciting period of history and wargaming, Helion and Barry put out a book together, so I really wanted to read it, and got my copy this week.

The book itself is very well done, with the quality of printing and photography to which Helion has accustomed us, it has 124 pages full of interesting information and eye candy pictures of Barry Hilton's outstanding collection.

In my opinion is a must have for any newcomer to late 17 century. But veterans will be very happy with it too and will encourage them to paint more! The book starts with an introduction and historical primer which covers succinctly almost every conflict from late 1650-60 until the very end of the century, including little known wars as the Kuruc Uprising, Genoese-Savoyard War or War of the Reunions.

The next part of the book covers the evolution of uniforms and clothes, the variation of cuts and colours of the uniforms even in the same unit, as it was in a pre industrial age. Also weapons and equipment, types of troops or tactics are well detailed.

Following the generic aspects, Barry shows us in a didactic way the main protagonists of the period and describes its forces, uniforms, navies etc... as there are literarly dozens of nations, some are covered  more deeply than others, in my humble opinion, for example, Denmark or Venice are described in more space than Sweden, Spain or Russia. But appart from that, I consider all of them correctly represented.

In the second half of the book, you can find everything related to gaming the period and creating an army (or a fleet!), the pictures are a joy to see, with super nice gaming tables, with detailed scenery and terrain features, and of course, colorful regiments painted. This  part of the book is extensive and well worth it, specially for the newbies of the period. Several gaming scenarios, land and sea, are depicted, with its opposing forces.

Finally, the last part of the book includes frequently asked questions about the number of flags, scale of the miniatures, figure compatibility in 28mm, etc.  Also a modelling section with painting guides of troops and ships.

The book ends with a list of miniature manufacturers and rules systems for our games.

Honestly, I find the book a more than  a pleasant surprise for this Christmas, I highly recommend it for anyone who likes wargaming  the last third of the seventeenth century. Finally, let me invite you to this exciting period, and this book is a good way to do so.

so I give it a 9/10 :)

you can find it here:


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