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Bestselling account of the life of a real Horatio Hornblower The life of Thomas, Lord Cochrane, later 10th Earl of Dundonald, was more extraordinary than that of Nelson, more far fetched than that of Hornblower or Patrick O'Brien's Jack Aubrey. Born the son of an eccentric and indigent Scottish peer, he entered the Royal Navy in 1793. In a series of outstanding and heroic actions, often against seemingly overwhelming odds, he made his name fighting Napoleon's navy as one of the most dashing and daring frigate captains of his day, before embarking on a career as a mercenary admiral.
Donald Thomas (1926-) was born in Somerset and educated at Queen's College, Taunton, and Balliol College, Oxford. He holds a personal chair in the University of Wales, Cardiff, now Cardiff University. His numerous crime novels include two collections of Sherlock Holmes stories and a hugely successful historical detective series written under the pen name Francis Selwyn and featuring Sergeant Verity of Scotland Yard, as well as gritty police procedurals written under the name of Richard Dacre. He is also the author of seven biographies and a number of other non-fiction works, and won the Gregory Prize for his poems, Points of Contact. He lives in Bath with his wife.