Non-Book Review: Admiral Insubordinate

Admiral Insubordinate: The Life And Times Of Lord Beresford, by Richard Freeman

I got another book from the Naval Historical Institute [1], and so as is my custom when I review books for others I will not publish a book review here. That said, I would like to make some comments about the book, what appealed to me about the book, and what I expected to find out about it, so that interested readers may look it up if they want. First, I thought it worthwhile to note that this is a self-published book (on Lulu) and while the quality of the book is excellent, the formatting of its index could have used the work of some copy-editors to make the capitalization and formatting consistent. Fortunately, these minor flaws do not mar the book as I have read it so far, which is a subject that has greatly intrigued me.

I must admit that I do not know much about Lord Beresford, who appears to have received a great deal of patronage from royal and elite circles, even as he was known as having problems with respect for authority, control of his temper and his tongue. His combined interests in politics and the military are also of interest to me. Intriguingly enough, it would appear from what I have read so far that Lord Beresford, despite his fame within English naval history for his actions in Egypt and the Sudan, that the three-time Lord Admiral had almost no naval work (apart from his royal cruises with the crown prince) for decades of his adult life, which is somewhat shocking for someone considered to be such an expert. Part of this lacuna in his military career was due to his moonlighting as a member of the British Parliament from Ireland.

So, if you are a fan of British military history from the 19th century (and fortunately the 19th century is one of my main specialties as a historian), and enjoy characters who aren’t exactly known for being very obedient to their authorities, this would probably be a good book for you. It has short chapters, it is a chronologically based biography of a somewhat notorious figure, and it appears well researched from its indices, including log books and diaries and letters. This book, like its subject, is a bit rough around the edges, but it deserves to be published and edited by a publishing house that could polish it up a bit and bring it to a wider audience.

[1] https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/a-non-book-review-kaigun/

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, History, Military History and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Non-Book Review: Admiral Insubordinate

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