Earlier this week, I finished reading Perilous Fight: America's Intrepid War With Britain on the High Seas, 1812-1815. Without going into a lot of detail, here are a few random thoughts about the book.
For the most part, it is a quick and easy read. There were one or two spots that moved kind of slowly, but that was the exception. Budiansky does a pretty good job fleshing out the relationships among the various "characters" in the story (i.e. high ranking naval officers and politicians, mainly on the American side, but on the British as well). He gives the reader a lot of background information to start with, almost too much in my opinion, as the book seems a bit slow to get started. However, once you get past the first chapter or two the book really takes off. If there's one problem I had with this book it is that the author sometimes takes on a sarcastic tone, which in my opinion is a little less than professional. I appreciate humor and wit in a book, but I think in some instances (mainly early in the book) Budiansky goes a bit overboard with it. Otherwise, I think its a fine book and would recommend it to anyone interested in the War of 1812 or the history of the US Navy.