THE SEA IS AT OUR GATES: THE HISTORY OF THE CANADIAN NAVY
Volume 18 Number 5
The Sea is at Our Gates is the first history of Canada's navy in almost forty years. It is also the first attempt at a complete history of the navy. Gilbert Norman Tucker's Naval Service of Canada (King's Printer, 1952) remains incomplete, and Joseph Schull's Far Distant Ships ¹ (c. 1950) gives an account only of naval operations at sea 1939-1945. Since that time there have been numerous excellent books dealing with some part of Canada's naval history, but none that has attempted to provide a complete and coherent overview of that history. This book is long overdue. The Sea is at Our Gates is a history of Canadian naval concerns and the maritime interests served by the navy. The author traces the ups and downs of the Canadian navy through two world wars, the Korean War, the Cold War and United Nations peace-keeping, right up to the recent government decision to scrap the plans for a fleet of atomic-powered submarines. Throughout his account, the ongoing theme is of a service that has survived despite public and governmental indifference, lack of equipment, and frequently contradictory or absent policy direction.The Sea is at Our Gates is an attractive, well-organized book. There are interesting illustrations, a large, useful index, a good bibliography, and detailed appendices. It is written in an interesting, easily read style and carries the conviction of a passionate commitment to the vital importance of the navy to this country. Public libraries and high school, college and university libraries will all want to add this book to their collections. Very highly recommended.
Neil V. Payne, Kingston Collegiate V.l., Kingston, ON.
¹ Reviewed vol. XVI/5 Sept. 1988, p. 176.
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