Thursday, December 31, 2015

Review of The Battles of the Coronel and the Falklands 1914 by Geoffrey Bennett

Author:  Geoffrey Bennett.
Title:  The Battles of Coronel and the Falklands 1914.
Publisher:  Pen and Sword Maritime.
Copyright:  1962, 2013.
Pages:  180.
Price:  $19.95 (US).

Overview & Impressions:
This is an updated reprint of the 1962 edition of The Battles of the Coronel and the Falklands 1914.  Geoffrey Bennett talks about about how Rear-Admiral Sir Christopher Cradock's squadron was sunk by the brillant Maximilian Graf von Spee at the the battle of Coronel.  The British loss was avenged a month later on December 8, 1914 when von Spee's force was sunk at the battle of the Falklands.

This books is a description of a lost age when commanders still were chivalrous and saluted each other.  The wireless played a significant role in the logistics of the British Grant Fleet.  The Germans had armed their cruisers to be "commerce raiders."  The British responded in kind by putting together task-forces to hunt them down.  Von Spee's force traveled across the South Pacific to meet the British armored cruiser fleet protecting South American waters.

Once the Admiralty lost that force, they put together another task-force made up of several battle-cruisers and sent them to the Falklands to intercept the Germans.  The rest is history.  Recommended reading on the 100th anniversary of the Great War.

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