Cochrane: The Life and Exploits of a Fighting Captain

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Da Capo Press, Incorporated, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 336 pages
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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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User Review  - BookWallah - LibraryThing

Meet the real Jack Aubrey! This biography of Cochrane makes it easy to see why at least three different authors based their naval fiction on the greatest British fighting sea captain of all times. His ... Read full review

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User Review  - JimPratt - LibraryThing

The life of Lord Cochrane is a remarkable story on its own, with no need for assistance in the telling, though this writer manages to have the pace slow to a crawl far too often by belabouring the ... 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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