Reading List

This is a list of a few recommended books that will provide a background to the modern Royal Navy. By clicking on the links below and purchasing from Amazon, the commission we receive will help support the work of this site. (Prices shown may be subject to change by Amazon at any time).

The Royal Navy Post-War and Cold War

Britain’s Future Navy

Hardback – by Nick Childs £13.94

Examining what kind of Royal Navy does Britain need now and in the future? The 21st century promises to be one of huge uncertainties and challenges for the senior service…

BUY

Hunter Killers

Hardback – by Iain Balantyne £13.20 the incredible, true story of the
Royal Navy ‘s submarines confronting the Soviet Union during the Cold War. BUY

Hunter Killers
Safeguarding the Nation: The Story of the Modern Royal Navy

Hardback – by John Roberts £18.94 Overview of the operations of the RN since WWII. Lavishly illustrated with great photos. Published in association with the White Ensign Association. BUY

Safeguarding the Nation:  The Story of the Modern  Royal Navy
We Come Unseen: The Untold Story of Britain’s Cold War Submariners

Paperback – by Jim Ring £15.00

Exciting account of the sometimes dangerous and risky operations involving the RN’s submarines operating against Soviets in the Cold war.

BUY

We Come Unseen: The Untold Story of Britain's Cold War Submariners
HMS Fearless

Hardback – by Ewen Southby-Tailyour £17.50

The story of one of the RN’s most well-known post-war ships which saw service around the world from the 1960s through the Falklands conflict until retirement in 2002.

BUY

HMS Fearless
The Impact of Polaris: The Origins of Britain’s Sea borne Nuclear Deterrent

Paperback Edited by J.E. Moore £2.00

The amazing story of how the RN successfully managed the complex project to build the Polaris submarine-based nuclear deterrent.

BUY

The Impact of Polaris: The Origins of Britain's Seaborne Nuclear Deterrent
The Age of Invincible: The Ship That Defined the Modern Royal Navy

Hardback by Nick Childs £12.43

A ship whose eventful life story embodies that of the Royal Navy in the last 30 years. Telling the story of her design and deployments against a background of technical and political change.

BUY

The Age of Invincible: The Ship That Defined the Modern Royal Navy
Beyond Endurance: An Epic of Whitehall and the South Atlantic Conflict

Paperback by Nick Barker £12.95

The story of the Whitehall incompetence, appeasement and defence cuts that led to the Falklands war. The Captain of HMS Endurance tells the story of the fight to save his ship in war (and in peace).

BUY

The Age of Invincible: The Ship That Defined the Modern Royal Navy
Phoenix Squadron: HMS Ark Royal, Britain’s last Topguns and the untold
story of their most dramatic mission

Paperback- By Roland White £5.01

A perfect demonstration of the power and flexibility of carrier air power. In 1972 the appearance of Buccaneer aircraft from HMS Ark Royal instantly deterred Guatemalan aggression against British Honduras.

BUY

Phoenix Squadron: HMS Ark Royal, Britain’s last Topguns and the untold story of their most dramatic mission
Up in Harm’s Way: Flying with the Fleet Air Arm

Paperback- R. M. Crosley £11.69

Biography of a Fleet Air Arm test pilot detailing the highs and lows of flying assorted naval aircraft in the 1960s and 70s.

BUY

Up in Harm's Way: Flying with the Fleet Air Arm
Joint Force Harrier

Paperback- By Adrian Orchard

James Barrington £4.57

Written by a RN pilot this describes the excellent work of the recently axed joint RN-RAF Harrier force flying in support of NATO troops in Afghanistan.

BUY

Joint Force Harrier
No Escape Zone

Paperback- By Nick Richardson £6.22

Nick Richardson was an RN Sea Harrier pilot shot down over Bosnia in 1994. The book details the flight and bombing operations of the Harrier and his rescue from behind enemy lines by special forces.

BUY

Joint Force Harrier

The Falklands War

The Royal Navy and the Falklands War

Hardback – by David Brown£17.00

One of the first in-depth books about the Falklands war covering in detail the movement of individual ship and units.

BUY

The Royal Navy and the Falklands War
Sea Harrier Over The Falklands: A Maverick at War

Paperback by Sharkey Ward £6.29

Frankly written account of the Sea Harrier in action which proved to be a war winner in the Falklands. The CO of 801 Squadron at times is critical of the way the war was fought and argues the case for the Fleet Air Arm against the tide of RAF opposition.

BUY

Sea Harrier Over The Falklands: A Maverick at War
Ordeal by Exocet

Paperback by Ian Inskip £9.89

By the navigating officer of destroyer HMS Glamorgan which survived an Exocet missile hit. A vivid first hand account of daily life on the frontline on a RN escort at war. A gripping and realistic insight into a modern battle at sea.

BUY

Ordeal by Exocet
Through Fire and Water: HMS Ardent – The Forgotten Frigate
of the Falklands War

by Mark Higgit £55 /£39

The harrowing story of the men of HMS Ardent which was attacked 17 times, killing 22 of her crew before sinking. Focusing on the human cost in the loss of the ship it demonstrates the courage and sacrifice made by the crew

BUY

Through Fire and Water: HMS Ardent - The Forgotten Frigate of the Falklands War
Four Weeks in May: A Captain’s Story of War at Sea

Paperback by David Hart Dyke £6.06

Written by the captain of HMS Coventry, a Type 42 destroyer bombed and sunk with the loss of 19 men. An honest account of the action by a brave man who was
lucky to survive himself.

BUY

Four Weeks in May: A Captain's Story of War at Sea
Reasons in Writing: A Commando’s View of the Falklands War

Paperback by Ewen Southby-Tailyour £12.71

By a Royal Marine officer who commanded the Falklands garrison in the 1970s long before the invasion and had warned of the islands’ inadequate defences. He also mapped the islands for yachting purposes and his local knowledge was a great asset to the task force in 1982.

BUY

Reasons in Writing: A Commando's View of the Falklands War
Amphibious Assault Falklands: The Battle of San Carlos Water

Paperback by Michael Clapp and Ewen Southby-Tailyour £10.49

In-depth account of the amphibious operations to re-take the Falkland Islands. Explains the complexity and problems of amphibious warfare and details some of the tensions between the senior commanders.

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Amphibious Assault Falklands: The Battle of San Carlos Water
One Hundred Days: Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander

Paperback by Admiral Sandy Woodward £9.99

Admiral Woodward commanded the RN battle group in the Falklands and reveals his thinking and the driving factors behind his often unpopular and difficult decisions that ultimately led to victory.

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One Hundred Days: Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander
Call for Fire: Sea Combat in the Falklands and the Gulf War

Hardback by Christopher Craig £4.46

Memoir of Chris Craig, CO of HMS Alacrity in the Falklands war and later commanded RN forces during the first Gulf War of 1991.

BUY

Call for Fire: Sea Combat in the Falklands and the Gulf War
Sink the Belgrano

Paperback by Mike Rossiter £5.59

Gives a good overview of the background to the war and then focuses on submarine HMS Conqueror and the details of the sinking of the Argentine cruiser Belgrano.

BUY

Sink the Belgrano
Secrets of the Conqueror

Hardback by Stuart Prebble £8.00

Details of HMS Conquerors service including sinking the Belgrano in the Flaklands war but also the more intriguing Cold War activities that involved stealing a Societ towwed array sonar. The nonsense surrounding controversy of the her log-books ‘lost’ after the Falklands is also explored.
BUY

Secrest of the conqueror

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