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The first section of the book use amazing . but there were 3-4 other books attached that had nothing to do with Alexa commands.
I liked the format of the question and answers. It covered everything I wanted to know, and some things I didn't. It is a amazing reference for those who wanted to know the best method to phrase a question. It also had a amazing run down on the primary skill set of Alexa.
(The King of Egypt - with his sword drawn - and his Queen, together, converse about killing Moses, servant of the Most High God) ... Queen Nefretiri: 'Bring it back to me, stained with his blood!' Pharoah Rameses: 'I will... to mingle with your own!' Inspired by the Book of Exodus, this Cecil B. DeMille-directed, Academy Award-winning biblical epic, the seventh most successful movie of all-time, needs no further analysis. Among the undisputed, where exceptionally classic one-liners are concerned, The Ten Commandments is a timeless generational masterpiece, and a National Movie Registry-honored landmark of the Hollywood cinema industry ... Period. Five out of five glittering stars.
An old creaker of a 12 chapter Foreign Legion serial actually puts John Wayne in the forefront of the action despite having him appear only fourth in the credits. The production standards of course were nothing to write home about then and are certainly slapdash now but the action has some nifty inventive moments and it was all shot on zone which was a huge plus. The amazing natured comraderie between the "musketeers" was definitely used as a prototype for Gunga Din, created six years later by RKO. Some notable appearances by Noah Beery Jr, Lon Chaney and Yakima Canutt will interest movie historians and the adventure is entertaining enough even if you can't obtain through all the chapters in one sitting. Not the greatest old-time serial ever created I'm sure but I'll watch John Wayne in anything and the DVD was worth the purchase.
Catton is America's acknowledged expert on the Civil War. His detail is exhaustive, and illuminating. His narrative seems to be without editorial bias. He aspires to be a completely neutral observer, a purveyor of the facts. His writing style is Mid 20th Century so readers fifty or so years after this book was written might search the passages and paragraphs overly long by the standards of today's staccato tempo of data exchange. We have gotten out of touch with the politics, the bureaucracy, and the wildly divergent quality of federal military leadership, however. So books by Bruce Catton are essential to the education of America - lest, in our ignorance, we repeat the mistakes of the past.
Interesting story, occasionally bogged down with war tactics and troop deployments that were impossible to follow without a map and nearly created me give up reading. Ever test reading a map on a page in Kindle? Also seemed to have a lot of info about a lot of insignificant characters. I wanted more insight into Grant. The book assumes we know much about the general, including his life before the war. Book also ended abruptly. I had hoped it would wrap up with a summary of his post-war life, at least how the battle impacted it..
The whole series was perfect but this final volume was the best. I've read quite a bit about the Civil Battle but learned some fresh facts in this well written look at the final days of the Civil War. The "myth" is that Grant operated with an overwhelming superiority in manpower - but Catton breaks down how the numbers are extremely misleading and reinforcements for Grant were very over inflated. This was a book I really enjoyed reading and I was disappointed when I came to the end. I highly recommend this volume and the entire "Grant" series by Catton, one of my favorite authors.
I am not a student of the Civil Battle yet I found this to be a remarkable history book. It is well written and anointed, yet very private in its descriptions of Grant through the latest year or so of the Civil War. One interesting thing from the book is the incompetence of some of the Union commanders and how close the Union came to losing the war. Grant held it together and had the plan for success.Excellent reading! Hard to place down.
This is one of the best books on Grant that I have read. Catton has done extensive research for this book as he contains a lot of letters from enlisted and officers to their wives that give necessary insights into history. Catton not only describes Grant as a strategist but as a commanding general that has to deal with troops logistics, feeding and clothing newly liberated slaves, and vicious politics both within the troops and within the U.S. government. The issue that I have with this book and others like it is without maps showing troop movements it is hard for the reader to visualise the necessary battles. This book rates five stars for the depth of research and showing the vast complexities of war.
Must say one of the best books I have read on the subject of the Civil War. The book is well written with lots of detail in regards to people, locations and wars fought during the battle between the states. Can obtain a small over detailed, but that is what makes this book amazing to read. I thought I knew somewhat a lot about Grant, but learned so much more through this book. Fascinating to read the relationship he had with Lincoln, Stanton, Mead, Sherman, etc. Also his utmost respect for Lee, but also wanted to destroy Lee and everything to do with the Confederacy. Suggest if you into Civil Battle History to read this book.
Now I know why readers have loved Bruce Catton for years!! This is a very readable work that gives a very human perspective of a man who really had the fate of the nation in his hands and who persevered to a amazing and final victory. Catton's style as a story teller is amazingly amazing for such a detailed historian, and I predict you will not place this book down until you finish.
Both this book and it's companion volume Grant Moves South are highly readable works of "popular" military history. Written in the 1960s, they are never the less perfect introductions to the Civil Battle campaigns of our greatest soldier. While they may lack in detailed campaign maps and illustrations, they do provide an perfect prose style which brings the characters, the surroundings, political atmosphere, and wars to life. They should be a part of everyone's Civil Battle "library"
The book reminded me of the very significant sacrifices that we created and the poor slaughter that occurred 1861 to 1865. The issues he encountered and a note that stuck with me was the use of animals and because the animals were not in shape to move the Troops forward the Troops waited for the horses to regain their strength I believe 90 days. I am guessing 1/3 of the book is notes and credits.
Bruce Catton is the grandmaster of nonfiction books written for the general public about the Civil Battle as seen from the Union perspective. "Grant Takes Command" is about exactly that--the period just before Grant is appointed as the third Lieutenant-General in the history of the U.S. through the end of the Civil War. This is a fascinating tale, colourful and Catton does a remarkable job explaining General Grant to the reader. He does much to explain Grant's style of leadership, his relationship with others including President Lincoln and General Meade, and how the soldiers in his troops (and those in the Confederate Army!) regarded Grant. Catton also discusses Grant's problems as regards drinking, and largely concludes that Grant had conquered this opponent long before he took on the Confederates as the Union's top me, the most interesting aspect of the book is Catton's perfect analysis as to how Grant finally managed to seize the initiative from Robert E. Lee. After Gettysburg, this was no doubt easier than it had been earlier in the Civil War, but nevertheless it must be remembered that no other Union general had ever really managed to do this prior to Grant, excepting perhaps General Meade at Gettysburg. Incidentally, Catton is relatively complimentary towards Gen. Meade, and points out that so was General Grant.I found the relationship between Grant and President Lincoln to be particularly insightful. It may be summed up that Lincoln quickly began to have complete and implicit trust in Grant, and was frankly relieved to have some of the burden of the battle shifted from his shoulders to Grant. For his part, Grant was loyal and respectful of the President, and was the excellent American general insofar as he thoroughly respected and acknowledged the core American value of ultimate civilian control over the fascinating anecdote was Mr. Catton's relating of an incident at the War of Two Harbors, where Grant proposed to General Lee after the battle, that both sides agree to let their respective medics onto the battlefield unmolested during a stipulated time, to save life and relieve the horrendous suffering of wounded and dying men lying between nomansland. Grant was indifferent to gaining or losing face, and focused solely on quickly coming to an arrangement in order to obtain on with the business of relieving the agony of the wounded. Lee, on the other hand, postured for over a day in an effort to create it appear as though Grant were the supplicant approaching Lee the victor. Meanwhile most of the wounded got on with the business of dying, and a lot of lives were perhaps needlessly lost. Candidly, this did nothing to improve my opinion of General Lee, and Catton relates this incident without judgment or rhetoric, allowing the reader to draw his or her own conclusion. He does so largely by quoting the actual letters exchanged by the two generals, so Catton's relating of the happening should probably be regarded as uncontroversial. My own conclusion was that my private estimation of Grant was heightened. I do not, in relating this event, mean to attack General Lee, who is certainly one of the most regarded generals in American history. But it does say something about both ton has a clear style of writing, and he embellishes his narrative with colourful and relevant anecdotes about each war and incident from the perspectives of generals, officers, and men alike. This is a amazing book about a amazing man during amazing times. Unforgettable.
This is a brief history of, and commentary on, the development of computer operating systems in the context of the competing business models of Apple and Microsoft, and how newer freeware operating systems like Linux relate to these corporate structures. As with all of this author's works, the writing is interesting and engaging. It is written for the lay-person, and I learned a lot from it. Published in 2009 and covering the state of affairs in the private computer industry probably up to 2007-08, the book is now somewhat outdated. Much has happened in the past 10 years, the bulk of it not very amazing or encouraging. How about a sequel? Why has commonly used software like Microsoft Office passed the point of maximum efficiency in the user-to-operating-system interface? Why, with every fresh release, is it becoming increasingly cumbersome and dumbed-down to the point of uselessness.
As a hardware/software engineer I have worked with MS-DOS, Windows, MacOS, and UNIX for a lot of years. Reading this fairly short, critical, and sometimes hysterically funny essay was an enjoyable experience, albeit I had some major reservations about some of Neal's suppositions and ephenson presents, first of all, a rather simplified ver of the history of PC computing globe and the operating systems that have helped define and advance (or impede) the development of the PC from something that only a geek could love to a ubiquitous near-appliance. His definition of what an operating system is matches what most programmers, using common sense, would call an operating system: a suite of low level tools that perform the mundane tasks of interpreting what an app wants to do to the physical realm of reading/writing memory, disk files, displaying graphics, etc. This is not a trivial point, as the current insistence by Microsoft that its operating system is inclusive of web browsers, audio/video players, and other application-level programs is a key item in its anti-trust defense. However, Stephenson bypasses the relevance of this in favor of defining the differences between the MacOS, Windows, UNIX, and BeOS. For this purpose he uses a highly useful (and sometimes funny) metaphor defining each OS as a vehicle dealership, each of whom sells their type of product to a various type of of his major points is the idea that an OS is a saleable product, even though in essence it is nothing but a long string of 1's and 0's, info only, and not a physical item, represents a paradigm shift, on the order of trying to sell a car's driving interface (steering wheel, brakes, etc) as a product separate from, and having intrinsic value in its own right, the vehicle itself. Given the obvious nonsense of this separation in the case of the car, he makes the case that operating systems should all eventually be given away free, ala Linux, and that businesses that depend on OS income are treading a very risky path.He shows a definite preference for those OSs that let the user to 'get under the hood' and tweak its operating parameters, such as Linux, and contains a long discourse on the whole concept of simplified, pre-packaged interfaces as culturally defining/defined, including some amazing analogies with what Disney does to create complex, detailed topics immediately comprehensible to Joe l of this makes for easy, enjoyable reading, whether you are a power user or just someone who wants to send e-mails. But his conclusions about which OS is best and the future direction of OS evolution is definitely skewed towards the power user, someone who is comfortable in dealing with all the inner complexities of computers and software. As such, he sometimes forgets that computers are a tool (even though he devotes a section to various levels of tools in terms of quality , power and user skill levels), of no use to the user except insofar as they provide something that user wants and needs, and it is that end effect the user wants, at the absolute minimum of fuss on his part.A thought provoking essay, whether you agree with him or not.
While in the midst of getting through Stephenson's Quicksilver I took a break to read this shorter, faster paced, work. I can't go back and read/review this when it was first published. I want I could, but I can't. I can only review it as I enjoyed it current day. It is an argument to the strength of Stephenson's prose that a shallow, dated essay on GUIs and command line operating systems even gets 3 stars 5 years after being published. Analogy and whimsy are well-used by Mr. Stephenson here in discussing the various types of users and how they want to interact with the machine. He makes a dry topic entertaining. Unfortunately, this a lot of years past publication the globe has move greatly on. Yes the command line vs. GUI worldviews have not changed, but neither has the freeing of OS's happened either. Additionally, beneath the whimsy and wordplay are only some nifty, but not fleshed out ideas almost laid down as truths. Stephenson required to back up his ideas with some more evidence rather than thought experiment. Despite those faults though, it is an enjoyable, but now purposeless, read.
Although a bit out-of-date I enjoyed the romp through history and the final return "...under it all, even today, is the command line..." Like all of Mr. Stephenson's writing it's clear, enjoyable and his "voice" strikes a nice balance between telling and portraying.
I had never heard of Neal Stephenson before and got this due to the intriguing title. Working in IT (as a DBA) I firmly believe that GUIs with their ever expanding feature sets are de-skilling certain necessary technical tasks. This is creating a fresh breed of IT professional who is very proficient at 'point-and-click' but who has small to no idea what is event in the background. I wanted to see what Neal Stephenson had to say about this and the respond is not much. I can sum up his book by saying it talks about how operating systems should be free, how Apple (MacOS) and Microsoft (Windows) are as poor as each other in terms of their approach and shop stance and linux is wonderful. He makes a few amazing points and some clever wise cracks towards the end, but overall it was light, entertainment rather than a serious insight into technological issues.
In the Beginning...Was the Command LineOriginally published in 1999, Neal's essay on operating systems is, like most of his writing, multilayered and filled with palatable prose and a thought provoking potpourri of info that, especially in the case of this essay in book form, often requires rereading for proper al has a lot to say in Command rst and foremost, I walked away with the following impression: in the globe of Neal, Windows is a important but doomed operating system. Neal explains why as only he can. He also tells you why Apple is doomed and Microsoft might be. Furthermore, Neal explains that there are better operating systems available and makes a case for why you might wish to test them out: they are free, and they don't crash. These two operating systems are Linux, which is a variant of UNIX and BeOS, which is the product of a angry Frenchman but which has a lot of merits that outweigh the product's French mand Line is filled with memorable statements that sometimes border on or are in all actuality, r instance - "Contemporary culture is a two-tiered system, like the Morlocks and the Eloi in H.G. Wells The Time Machine, except it has been turned upside down. In The Time Machine, the Eloi were an effete upper class supported by lots of subterranean Morlocks who kept the technological wheels turning. But in our world, it's the other method round. The Morlocks are in the minority, and they are running the show, because they understand how everything works. The much more numerous Eloi learn everything they know from being steeped from birth in electronic media directed and controlled by book-reading Morlocks. That a lot of ignorant people could be risky if they got pointed in the wrong direction, and so we've evolved a famous culture that is (a) almost unbelievably infectious, and (b) neuters every person who obtain infected by it, by rendering them unwilling to create judgments and incapable of taking stands."In other words, Neal is saying, there are the people who read the book and there are the people who only watch the film that is created about the book, and the people who read the book are the people who really know what the author was saying. The people who watch the film don't really obtain it, because they obtain the filtered version, the dumbed down version, the ver built for mass consumption by those who are less smart or perhaps just not as mand Line isn't for everyone. It's for Morlocks, or those who wish to be Morlocks. If you've never owned a pocket protector, opened your computer case up or tinkered with the innards of any of the plethora of electronic devices you own, then you probably won't consume this book with relish, as I , if you've stuck with my review to this paragraph, you likely are the type who will have fun Command Line. Most importantly, you are, in all probability, the type to ponder on and eventually benefit from Neal's closing, in which he compares God to an engineer and remind his readers that, "if you don't like having your choices created for you, you should begin making your own."I came away from reading Command Line thoroughly convinced that I need to discover BeOS when I return from the battle I'm currently fighting. And of course, I will continue making my own choices whenever possible, rather than letting others create them for me.Update: Since I wrote the review I've been talking to people and reading Neal's web site. Two things are apparent to me: a) the book is very dated and b) Macintosh created the very intelligent decision to move their OS to a UNIX based product. This book will still be a highly enjoyable read if you have the soul of a nerd, as I do.
I'm a professional programmer and an avid Linux owner. I'm always satisfied when someone throws a small barb at Microsoft or Apple. That having been said, I think this book generates more heat than light when it comes to the "OS War." It's somewhat weak on history, and a bit out of touch with what the average computer user wants. A glaring omission is the early history of Stephenson's beloved Unix. To hear him tell it, Unix begins with Richard Stallman and Linus Torvalds. Now, to be sure these two are giants whose shoulders we stand upon, but where is the story of Unix's actual invention at AT&T in the early 70s? The word "AT&T" appears only once in the book, briefly cited as something that Stallman was reacting against. The dark side of Unix's corporate past - the fact that Unix originally was a proprietary operating system under AT&T, and that AT&T completely missed the point of Unix and sold the license to Novell, who also blew it - would have fit right in with Stephenson's argument. Basically, for Stephenson, Unix IS Linux. There is no description whatsoever of the rich Unix tradition that precedes the founding of the Free Software Foundation, nor of the contributions that commercial Unixes like SunOS and Solaris have made, such as NFS, NIS, etc., nor of academic contributions like BSD or X. Stephenson lauds XWindows but makes it seem as if it too were a product of his open-source, hacker utopia - and not of the MIT X Consortium. These traditions were direct antecedents of today's hacker community, and Stephenson gives them short shrift. Finally, there is Stephenson smugly chiding us on how GUIs create us into sheep led by a corporate shepherd. But he undermines his own argument by detailing (pretty factually) the time and sweat of installing and using Linux. So we are supposed to like this better than Microsoft? For the uninitiated, it sucks just as much - maybe more! If you are a programmer and a professional, Linux/Unix is the best route to go down. For the rest, people wish something that turns on quickly, that doesn't wreck their stuff, and is simple to use. Windows isn't that - but neither is Linux. Stephenson is missing out on the true story: the imminent destruction of the private computer as we know it. Someday very soon, small, highly-networked, specialized devices will replace the generalized, complicated computer. People will only pay for what they need. And what they obtain will be appliances, things that require neither a $95 per call support line (Microsoft) nor a descent into the depths of hacker notice boards (Linux), to fix. Something like a TV set. Probably Linux or its descendant will be the operating system that these things will run on, but most people besides programmers won't need to care. It's a fun ride, and you'll certainly finish knowing more than you did when you started. If I had to do it over, I'd buy and read this book again. But there is much more than this.
Allow me preface this review by saying that Neal Stephenson is one of my all-time favorite authors -- I've read all of his books, even under the pseudonym Stephen Bury, all of his Wired articles, and everything I see that he's written online, and I loved every word of them. This book is about the length of one of his shorter Wired articles or a chapter from Cryptonomicon -- more on the order of a pamphlet or a "young adult" e automobile sales metaphor in the first four pages that compares Windows, Linux, Be-OS and the Mac is worth reading. Stephenson's comments about the command line are not. If you really wish to know why to use a command line, check out Hunt and Thomas's "The Pragmatic Programmer". As they point out, it's all about the automation, and this is essentially a professional's tool. If you really wish to understand the marketing side of things and the network result in order to understand why Microsoft has shop share, read "Information Rules" by Shapiro and Varian; to understand how hard it is to port geek solutions to the masses, check out "Crossing the Chasm" by Moore. Otherwise, read some of Stephenson's fiction, which is far more enjoyable.
Almost perfect. If you use password authentication, it works great. I was not able to connect to my server using an RSA key. There is no clean interface for importing keys, you make a key directory, and then copy-paste an ASCII key file, all manually. I followed the instructions and still was not able to create it work.
powerful...lean. great. Unlike the other apps like this that I've tried... ghost commander with FTP, SFTP runs lean..quick and is very efficient . when you have to move or manipulate videos and hi res images...in directories containing thousands of files...lag is a prob and responsive matters. Love this strong application with all the hassle free plugins.
Works well with key file (... and non-standard port, too -- host:port). Finally I can do all my moving items around in one client ... With some speed optimisation in the SSH module I'd give it 6 stars. :) Standard FTP (in the main program) is already as quick as it can get.
Extremely useful As file managers go I like Ghost a lot and SFTP makes it even more useful. It just misses a few added features: - nonstandard port - key based auth (could it be created to share/import the same connections and keys as those saved in (vx) connectbot ?)
I think I am correct in saying that I have read all of the biographies of Thomas, Lord Cochrane, published in the latest few decades, and I would rate this volume as the being the best of all, giving amazing coverage of all phases of Cochrane's long naval and political careers. Unlike some authors, Cordingly is careful to match Cochrane's own accounts of his activities versus other basic sources, and to give equal balance to Cochrane's activities in the battles for South American independence with those during the Napoleonic chrane was an extraordinary man, his genuine history perhaps more awesome than any of the fiction inspired by his real-world activities, this is a biography that does him justice, lauding his amazing qualities and achievements without hiding his flaws and failures.
Biog. of a titled Scottish British Naval Officer 1775-1860. He was adventuresome, clever, resourceful, inventive, skilled in mechanics and sailing and a political radical. His only failing was not to hold his amazing connections in Britain’s naval and political world. He was successful versus the French navy sometimes resulting in “prize” ships. Then, after his downfall and disgrace from a stock scandal, he took the helm of the Chilean Navy to liberate them, the Peruvians and then Brazilians from Spanish domination at sea; his only mishap was with the Greeks versus the Turks. Fortunately, due to his perseverance, he was able to return to England and restore his amazing name and naval position. His exploits are written in context with the political and naval environment. A lot of basic sources are used. Like Cochrane’s life, the book never has a dull moment. Epilogue, Glossary, Appendix, Bibliography, Notes, Index, Illustrations, Maps, Diagrams. CD available.
"Cochrane: The True Master and Commander" by David Cordingly is the biography of Thomas Cochrane, British naval commander during and after the Napoleonic Wars. His exploits have been drawn on for such fictional naval heroes Horatio Hornblower and Jack Aubrey. Cochrane not only served with the British navy but also was instrumental in the war for colonial independence of Chile, Brazil, and Greece. Always outspoken, he created a lot of opponents in the government resulting in false accusations of stock fraud, imprisonment, and loss of national honors. His forty year war to clear his name took much the same courage as wars on the sea. This story of a small remembered naval character needs to be read.
Chances are you've already heard of Horatio Hornblower, Jack Aubrey, maybe even Frank Mildmay. But how about Thomas Cochrane, the true life British naval officer upon whose life and career all of these fictional characters are at least in part based?That's what I thought. Don't worry, David Cordingly's Cochrane: The True Master and Commander has got you e best biographies illuminate not only their title hero but the time and put in which that hero lives, and this book does that in spades, with some eye-opening revelations. For one thing, I had no idea that the British Navy during the Napoleonic Battles were on the whole, well, pirates.Oh yes, they were, and I'll tell you why. The British Navy was essentially a money-making proposition in those days. Whenever a British ship caught an opponent ship, it would be sent back to England where it would be assessed by the Admiralty and assigned a value, one-eighth of which was then shared among the officers and squad of the capturing ship. The more opponent ships they captured, the more prize cash they made, and Cochrane, whose improvident father had cost the family the hereditary estate, was forever in a row with whoever was in charge about getting full value for the ships he captured.An eye ever to the main possibility Cochrane may have had, but he was also by everyone's account, even his enemies', of which he created many, a master mariner. Cordingly writes that some of Cochrane's actions, described in full in you-are-there prose, are still cited by naval historians as the best of their kind. He was his own worst opponent on land but at sea he was unsurpassed. He wreaked havoc with Napoleon's navy up and down the coasts of France and Spain, and not for nothing did the French call him "le loup de mer," or the hore, though, he involved himself in radical politics and created opponents of people in power, especially in the Navy. He was intemperate and mouthy, which, allied with a burning and fatal desire to achieve better pay and conditions for his officers and men, started the downward spiral. The British Admiralty just wasn't there yet. When, inevitably, he created England too hot to keep him, he went to South America, where as, sequentially, chief of naval operations for both countries he assisted immeasurably in Chile and Brazil's battles of independence with Spain, and later and less gloriously in Greece's battle of independence with Turkey.He had a keen scientific curiosity and the patience for experimentation which caused him to spend a amazing portion of his aforesaid prize cash on experimenting with, among other things, lamps, steam engines and bitumin (aka asphalt). He was a passionate and faithful husband to his not always worthy wife, and what cash he didn't spend on scientific experimentation and petitions for reinstatement in the British Navy was employed to bail their worthless kids out of is book is beautifully produced, with a lot of detailed maps, marvelous cutaway illustrations of two of Cochrane's ships so you can practically walk the decks right next to him, three sections of contemporary paintings of mates and colleagues, including a lot of portraits of Cochrane himself at every age, ships of his time, seascapes of sea wars and ports of call and scenes of engagement. There is even a glossary at the back to teach you the difference between bombarde and bumboat, and more illustrations throughout, such as a reproduction of the recruiting poster Cochrane had created up to entice a ship's squad to the Pallas. "My lads," says the poster, "The rest of the GALLEONS with the Treasure from LA PLATA are waiting half loaded at CARTAGENA...Such a Possibility perhaps will never occur again."That was appealing to their better natures, all rdingly's Cochrane is a rousing tale, all the more astonishing because it's all absolutely true. A unbelievable read.
Cordingly does a masterful job with this book. As someone who has read extensively on the Royal Navy in the Napoleonic Wars, I truly enjoyed the sections about Cochrane in South America. The fact that Cochrane had the temerity to abscond with a warship and head back to Britain blew me away! Most readers will have fun this book even more if they have small background in the Age of Sail. Cordingly writes well without getting "hung up in the weeds," as historians are prone to do. This work deserves the five star rating.
After getting hooked on the Aubrey/Maturin series and re-reading Hornblower, I could not resist reading the biography of Captain Lord Cochrane. Wow, it reads much like a novel, but without all the satisfied endings. The true Aubrey had a lot of more issues and insecurities and failures than the fictional character. I was honestly hoping to read that his old shipmates did stand in front of the pillory to prevent the abuse, however it never came to that. Also his South American escapades are much more daring in history than represented in the novels. Overall it was hard to place down and I expect this recap of Cochrane's career will be the last. It is very comprehensive...no fluff here. I highly recommend!
I became interested in Thomas Cochrane after studying the battles in South America, (Chile, Peru & Brazil) in which Cochrane figured so prominently in providing leadership to their nascent navies. My first impression was that he was an adventurer and possibly a freebooter and filibuster, but he turned out to be much more than that. His fame was first earned fame as a British captain in naval actions during the Napoleonic wars, and he even took part in the Greek battle for independence in the 1820s. The subtitle, "The True Master and Commander" escaped me until I read in the Introduction that Cochrane was used as the historical figure around which the novels by O'Brian and Forester were based. Apparently the title was also the name for a novel by Henty, and has even reached famous culture in a film by the same title. At any rate, the real historical hero surely eclipses the fictional ones. Thomas Lord Cochrane, Earl of Dundonald, was a born into a noble Scottish family with widespread contacts and influence and small money. He first went to sea under his uncle, and following the very unfair and corrupt practices of the day was rapidly advanced to Lieutenant and commander of a little sloop. He created his bones through extremely aggressive action in the Mediterranean where he captured a much larger Spanish frigate. For this and other actions he was promoted to Post Captain, and his career seemed assurred. Then the other side of Cochrane weighed in. He rashly displeased Admiral St. Vincent, and after causing his superior at Basque Streets to undergo a courts martial, Cochrane turned a lot of of his superiors and fellow captains versus him. He entered politics and was elected to Parliment, and pursued both his political and naval career simultaneously much to the detriment of his naval career. That Cochrane possessed an immense amount of talent as a naval commander is beyond question, but he also possessed the ability to self-destruct through a definite lack of political acumen. He allied himself with political radicals and brought himself into conflict with the very conservative hierarchy of the Royal Navy to his amazing detriment. As a effect he became involved in foreign adventures for Chile, Brazil and Greece, where in particular he was stunningly sussessful in South America and is honored today more than in Amazing Britain. His career easily includes the raw material for a lot of novels. Author Cordingly has written an perfect biography on a difficult character. The writing style enhances the narrative, and the reader turns the pages eagerly awaiting what the author has to say next. The controversies in Cochrane's life, notably his possible involvement in a fraud perpretrated by his acquaintances that resulted in a prison term, fine, and time in the stocks, was presented fairly with evidence from both sides. The author quotes from Cochrane's own writings, but is careful and thorough in his analysis. The author concludes that Cochrane was not guilty, but he also gives references of those who thought otherwise. The maps at the beginning of the book are perfect and should be used by the reader as reference when reading the book. The approach to the topic is scholarly, and the thirty pages of end notes are valuable both for explanations and reference. The author's list of references is also thorough and undoubtedly useful for further research and reading. But the true value to this work is that the author has produced a scholarly work that will stand the examination of scholars without loading the prose with the unfathomable [email protected]#$%!&o loved by academicians. This is a very readable book for average readers and laymen interested in Cochrane or naval history. Author Cordingly has earned his five stars, and I recommend this work to all.
I just finished David Cordingly's Cochrane, the True Master and Commander. At first it was stupefyingly dull, but once we arrived at Basque Roads, the acc became more lively. A positive aspect was the use of period sources, and an necessary source for this time was Francis Marryat. Marryat's lively style seems to have injected some vigor into Cordingly, because there after the work becomes more rdingly covers all aspects of Cochrane's life: his youth in Scotland, early career as a popular fighting frigate captain, the stock exchange scandal, Chile, Brazil, Greece, and finally back home again to be redeemed by his country. It covers his interest science and his frequent work on a rotary steam engine, the development of steamships, and other endeavors. Over all, I found it balanced. It shows us both the greedy man who quarreled constantly for prize cash and honors, and the dedicated seaman beloved by sailors who called him 'Dad,' although I felt Cordingly didn't really do justice to this aspect. Like most landlubbers, he has problem grasping the 'wooden world' of the is biography gives a amazing overview of the man and his accomplishments and the info of his life.
Very objectively written capturing the interest especially to me who has lived in Brazil. Down here in Argentina where I live now small is said about Cochrane's conquests that were important for the independence of Brazil, Chile and Peru. I was at the former fort of Valdivia, Chile ignorant of what really happened there till I read this book. The detail of Cochrane's brilliance in his landward attacks on the forts is fascinating.
A solid, overall enjoyable biography of an astounding man.Having read Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey-Maturin series, it's strange to see that all the things and happenings that created 'Lucky' Jack Aubrey a amazing fictional character, are simply biographical for Thomas Cochrane.I give it 4/5 stars because I think the author spoils (as much as a historical record can be) the naturally building drama of a lot of of the happenings by telling you how it turns out before describing the action. I also felt his retelling of the Gamo action was a bit rushed and underplayed considering the brilliance of ere were also some typo problems in the latest 1/3 of the book. Nothing too bad, just noticeable.If you know anything about Cochrane, you'll have fun this book. If you've never heard of him, all the more reason to read it!