While the author has made the point that there were many fine officers in the Spanish Navy, and that there were many excellent ships, the facts indicate that this combination was never capitalised upon, and the result was invariably disasterous. The best of leaders can only do so much with what they are given, and in the case of Spain, this meant far too few seamen, far too much influence by the Army, far too little training for crews, and some of the worst treatment imaginable. There is no point in building enormous warships if they cannot be effectively manned! Further, it is well-documented that ships of the line of the Spanish navy, although enormous in size, were laughably undergunned compared to their contemporaries. This is not made clear in this book. That said, it would also be of enormous benefit to view some of the plans and profiles of these ships, so as to compare them with their British and French contemporaries. Dozens of books have been written about HMS Victory and other Royal Navy ship types, but almost nothing about the ships of the other navies of the time, and even less in English! It is a great pity the author chose to use so many primitive contemporary Spanish paintings for illustration rather than something either commissioned for the book (expensive, no doubt!), or obtained with a bit more research into what is available.