This is a book that far exceeded my expectations. Many "review/summary" military books today seem to be creatures of committees. These texts are modular efforts where the author's responsibility ends with the text and a bunch of "creative" types take over to deal with the visual aspects, probably utterly unaware of how ill-equipped they are to do a decent job. The end result is a book with a fairly decent text, poorly chosen photos, and pathetically inaccurate drawings, giving the average reader a false understanding of the subject in hand, however. . .
Mr. Brown has produced what is close to a history of the evolution of British warships from wood to the Dreadnaught! I can not heap enough superlatives this work. The clear, impartial-yet-probing text covers just about every aspect of the trials and tribulations that faced the Admiralty and their designers over 60 years rapid technological progress. The manner in which they coped with ever-changing conditions is facinating to read. Even what appear to be blunders become understandable as Mr. Brown traces the process to failure, high-lighting the clash of personalities, financial constraints, voter-driven political pressure, threatening foreign naval developments. One becomes so engrossed with this myriad of factors that only admiration for those long-passed gentlemen results. "Warrior to Dreadnought" is the finest military/technical book i've read in several decades.
To saturate one's understanding of this most challenging and interesting period in British naval history, "Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships, 1860-1905" is the ideal companion to "Warrior...". Also, the bibliography offers a sterling array of references for those interested in enhancing their knowledge of any aspect of the people, historical, and technology of the period.
About the only improvement possible would be to include more photos or drawings of vessels discussed. Of course the best improvement would be to double the size of the text, but then i speak as someone completely entranced by this work. It was with great regret that the last page was read: "Please, Mister, may i have some more?"