Utmost Gallantry: The U.S. and Royal Navies at Sea in the War of 1812

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This comprehensive book focuses on the overall War of 1812 from the perspectives of both one of the largest fleets in the world and a small one, just three decades old. Instead of describing battles, Kevin D. McCraine analyzes entire cruises by American and British vessels, looking at successes and failures and how they translated into broader strategies. McCraine draws on many archival sources and, unlike other War of 1812 books, provides a balanced assessment of the war on the high seas. Excellent reading for those who are keenly interested in the naval War of 1812.

By Kevin D. McCraine, 384 pgs., Naval Institute Press, 2011.