British Cruisers of the Victorian Era, Norman Friedman.
Looks at the evolution of the British cruiser during a period of massive technological change. We start with ships that were effectively Napoleonic frigates but with auxiliary steam engines, and end with the fast turret armed turbine powered cruisers of the First World War (the last generation of ships before the battlecruisers). A splendid book that focuses on the design process as much as on the physical details of the ships, asking why a particular type of ship was built and looking at the many compromises that produced each design.
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