An extraordinarily gripping narrative of how Britain, seemingly on the ropes after losing control of America and growing internal dissent - built the military and naval might to defeat Napoleon - and in doing so transformed her destiny.
'If it had not been for you English, I should have been Emperor of the East; but wherever there is water to float a ship, we are sure to find you in our way.' - Emperor Napoleon.
But just thirty-five years earlier, Britain lacked any major continental allies and was wracked by crises and corruption. Many thought that she would follow France into revolution. The British elite had no such troubling illusions: defeat was not a possibility. Since not all shared that certainty, the resumption of the conflict and its pursuit through years of Napoleonic dominance, is a remarkable story of aristocratic confidence and assertion of national superiority.
Winning these wars meant ruthless imperialist expansion, spiteful political combat, working under a mad king and forging the most united national effort since the days of the Armada. And it meant setting the foundations for the greatest empire the world has ever known.
David Andress writes well, charts the British experience of the struggle against Napoleon in a manner that is as thorough as it is enthusiastic, approaches his subject from a refreshing perspective and fills a serious gap in the historiography . . . The Savage Storm is a book that . . . should be read by all those interested in Britain's role in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars - Literary Review - Charles Esdaile
Andress's vivid account of Britain's history during the war years . . . He writes movingly about the reality of war, the experience of the common soldier and especially of the sailor . . . He shows commendable skill in interweaving the two narratives, the military and the political, to offer a convincing overview of the age - BBC History Magazine - Alan Forrest