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The First Boxer plot - An Anglo-French armada sails towards the coast of China to enforce the Treaty of Tientsin. The Allied forces will be hopelessly outnumbered, yet Lord Elgin's army will inflict one of the most decisive victories in history. Their incredible military success will be due to the guidance of just one man. review > enjoyed the part where history begins to rapidly change, and all the history books change every day, even the paper copies. I enjoyed the details of Imperial China: the silks, the carvings, the colors. I enjoyed the description of the sap of the tree of life, golden and viscous, swirling of its own accord. Perhaps a bit too much blood and gore, with heads being hacked off, but it is a war. 478 perfect pp, 800 or so grams packed weight, substantial taster at rear of Ride's next book.