This is the story of what Rudyard Kipling called 'the savage wars of peace'. Throughout Queen Victoria's long reign there was not a single year in which, somewhere in the world, British soldiers were not fighting for her and her Empire. It tells the fascinating story of the little known and extraordinary small wars, and of the men who fought them.These wars were the price on Empire, of world leadership and of national pride, and it was usually paid without qualms or regret; continuous warfare became an accepted way of life in the Victorian era, and in the process, the British Empire quadrupled in size. But, engrossing as these small wars are - and they bristle with bizarre, tragic and humorous incident - it is the officers and men who fought them that dominate the book. With their courage, foolhardiness and eccentricities, they are an unforgettable lot.