Cochrane: The Life and Exploits of a Fighting Captain

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Da Capo Press, Incorporated, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 336 pages
7 Reviews
A seaman as heroic as Nelson, a master of gunnery and genius at deception, a tactician so formidably skillful Napoleon called him “the sea wolf,” Thomas Cochrane made of his life a legend more sensational than any of the works of fiction it inspired—like the tales of C. S. Forrester and Patrick O’Brian’s best-selling series of naval novels featuring the redoubtable Jack Aubrey. Barely twenty-five in 1800 when he assumed command of the tiny brig Speedy, Cochrane sailed to naval glory in the Mediterranean and won national fame at home. A maverick, he preferred innovation to the orders of the Admiralty. He flew under false colors, instituted in-shore guerrilla raiding, promoted the use of explosion ships, and experimented with poison gas. As a mercenary, he fought in the cause of independence for Chile, Peru, and Brazil, where, outnumbered and outgunned, he triumphed over Spanish and Portuguese naval forces. He also survived a Stock Exchange scandal that landed him in prison. Rebellious, dashing, mad, heroic, Cochrane epitomized the spirit of the Romantic Age he embodied.

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Review: Cochrane: The Life and Exploits of a Fighting Captain

User Review  - Michael - Goodreads

This is a thoroughly researched and superbly balanced assessment of Cochrane's character. It's not hagiography and it's not a hatchet job; Cochrane is shown to be both deeply flawed and extremely brilliant. The problem lies in the poor writing that gets in the way of a magnificent story. Read full review

Review: Cochrane: The Life and Exploits of a Fighting Captain

User Review  - Andrew Gilmartin - Goodreads

Robert Harvey's engaging, if somewhat fawning, Cochrane: The Life and Exploits of a Fighting Captain is a fast read about a VERY adventurous Royal Navy captain from the early 1800. Read full review

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About the author (2001)

Robert Harvey is a former British MP who spent nine years on the foreign staff of "The Economist," where he became assistant editor. He lives in Powys, Wales and London.

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