12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
I liked it!,
This review is from: Admiral Collingwood: Nelson's Own Hero (Hardcover)
I read this book for interest and information and was not disappointed. It is not "exciting", what it needs for excitement I suppose is sex and violence. When you consider that actual warfare consists of long periods of inactivity and boredom for any given individual the opportunities for either are limited in the context of Collingwoods time at sea. The Admiral's sex life is his own business and the violence when it arrives is very violent indeed and Collingwood would "fight like an angel". But neither is described in great detail here there are more than enough books on these subjects around.
The book does start off with a travalogue which nearly put me off but I stuck with it! What we have is a very interesting portrait of a man who comes, I think, as near our modern idea of what a naval captain of that time should be like, nurtured as we are on a plethora of fictional paradigms. Collingwood's great friend Nelson is dealt with in a very reasoned fashion and doesn't suffer by it.
What is particularly engaging is the wit and humour shown in various snippets from letters and journal included here. I think what we forget in this PC world is that previous generations may have different standards to ours but were three dimensional characters and no less clever or capable than we and their hopes and aspirations and their ability to feel pain no different to ours.
I think this comes across well in this book it is an easy read not because it is simple but because it is well written. If you have an interest in the times and events covered in the years of Collingwood's life and his circle of interest you won't be sorry if you read this! (You may also conclude that Cuthbert stands beside Horatio not slightly behind him.)