Features February 2008 Issue

Practical Sailor Book Review: Fireside Journeys for the Winter Months

Sailors landlocked until spring will find comfort in these entertaining nautical tomes.

Epic journeys, colorful captains, and a tyrannical nemesis splash through the pages of three nautical novels, perfect fodder for the winter months ahead. “Cochrane, The Real Master and Commander,” by maritime historian David Cordingly, is a compelling biography of Thomas Cochrane, the real life naval officer and muse for Patrick O’Brian’s Jack Aubrey and “Master and Commander.” John Baldwin and Ron Powers in “Last Flag Down” bring to life the sailors of the CSS Shenandoah, the confederate ship that wreaked havoc on Yankee merchant shipping after the confederate surrender. Baldwin, a direct descendent of the ship’s executive officer, brings a new perspective to a well-documented story. “Under Enemy Colors,” another sea tale set during the 1793 British war with France, relates the exploits, trials and tribulations of First Lt. Charles Hayden on the British frigate the HMS Themis. For those lucky enough to be reading these books in the tropics, the adventures remain the same, the pages are just a little warmer.

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