In Storm & Conquest, The Battle for the Indian Ocean 1808-1810 we get a well researched insight into what was going on in the region of the Indian Ocean both at sea and ashore. How this area, effectively ruled by the East India company, was affected by the European governments and East india House is also explored.
The early part of the book deals mainly with how the 'East Indiaman' ships were run and the lives of passengers and crew culminating in the loss of several ships in two hurricanes. The latter part concentrates on the campaign against the islands of Ile de France (Mauritius) and Bourbon. Part of this campaign was the Battle of Grand Port which, as the British lost four frigates to the French, is not often covered in fiction. We learn much of the personalities involved, both on the British and French sides, and as with recent treatments of 'Bounty' Bligh the narrative is revisionist in that a new look is taken as the underlying facts rather than perpetuating the stories that gained credence at the time. This is particularly true of Captain Corbet of Neriede and Africaine who's tendency to flog created many myths that he was killed by his own crew or that they refused to fight the enemy resulting in the loss of the ship.
If you want to know more of this far off campaign I strongly recommend this book.
Description of: Storm & Conquest
Author: Stephen Taylor