H.M.S. Electra as Told to A. V. Sellwood by T. J. Cain soon to be presented for sale on the stupendous BookLovers of Bath web site!
Published: London: Frederick Muller Limited, 1960, Hardback in dust wrapper.
2nd impression. [First Edition: 1959] Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Portrait to the frontispiece;
From the cover: The only time that H. M. S. Electra got a wartime mention in the national press was when three-quarters of her crew were no longer able to read it. They were dead.
For it was the disastrous yet little-known Battle of the Java Sea where a British, Australian, American and Dutch force was annihilated by the Japanese that put Electrons name in print.
H. M. S. Electra attacked through the smoke and was seen no more . ..
The epitaph was terse, though moving. It left much unsaid. And today, in H. M. S. Electra, Lieutenant-Commander T. J. Cain who fired her torpedoes during her last desperate battle does much to do justice, long belated, to both the ship and the company who served her.
The result is sensational. For Cains story, prepared with the aid of author and naval correspondent A. V. Sellwood, reveals that the unknown Electra was the un-publicised companion-in-battle of some of the best-known names in the Royal Navy, and was the witness of events that shook the world. The sinking of the Athenia, the Ark Royals attacks on the Nazis in Norway, the first Russian convoy, the defence of Singapore wherever there was trouble Electra was sure to be found.
SHE was the unnamed destroyer that sailed with Hood to find the Bismarck, and picked up the formers three survivors
SHE was at the sinking of the Repulse and Prince of Wales, and snatched part of their crews to safety beneath the mammoth Jap air attack
And SHE was destroyed during a lone torpedo onslaught against an entire Japanese fleet, to cover the disabled Exeter, famous veteran of the River Plate.
H. M. S. Electra is not just a war-story it is also a history. But it is a very human history history as seen by a man who helped to make it.
Lieut. -Commander Cain, who, after a fantastic escape in a U. S. submarine, was later captured and spent the rest of the war as a prisoner of the Japanese, is pungent in his comments regarding the blunders of the time. But equally he is an enthusiast for Electra, her officers, and the men who made her what he calls: A happy ship the finest I have ever known.
Good in Poor Dust Wrapper. Unlaminated dust wrapper a little edgeworn and faded with damp wrinkling to both panels and a short, closed, tear to the head of the upper panel. Price Clipped. Gently bruised at the head, tail and corners of the binding. Leans slightly. Pages very gently age-tanned.
Blue boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. [IX] 278 pages. Index. 8″ x 5¼”.