Matt's Reviews > John Barry: An American Hero in the Age of Sail

John Barry by Timothy McGrath
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's review
Aug 25, 2010

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bookshelves: biography, military-biography, naval-biography, naval-history, age-of-sail, revolutionary-war
Read from October 04 to 11, 2010

John Barry is often overlooked in the early American naval history. McGrath set out to rehabilitate Barry's image in history. He succeeds in support the argument for Barry to be better remembered. The issues in his book isn't the length of the book or his research but for me McGrath became a distraction in his writing from Barry. To often McGrath would personalize or interject his feelings into the text such as "Barry must have rolled his eyes". This became a distraction to the reading because it happened often enough to disrupt the flow. What the book excelled in was relating an argument for Barry to be considered better in histories. However with John Paul Jones as a contemporary Barry perhaps the better captain and motivator can't compete with the flash of Jones. With that being said at the end of the book he makes an argument for Barry to have the same status if not better than Jones. It was a good look at the Revolutionary War navy and the in between years and the start of the US Navy.

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