The infamous U boats deployed by Germany in the two World Wars have spawned several works of fiction and non-fiction. These deadly vessels were not just efficient and lethal killing machines, but they were also used very effectively in economic blockades. They were positioned primarily to obstruct the conveyance of fuel, food and other essential supplies which the enemy needed to sustain the war effort.
In the Diary of a U Boat Commander, the author, Stephen King-Hall draws upon his vast personal experiences as a naval officer in World War I. Writing under the name of the fictitious narrator, Etienne, King-Hall presents the events in the story in the form of a diary that has been discovered aboard a captured German U boat.
The diarist is a German nobleman of the rank of Captain in the German Navy. He is drawn in the almost clichéd pattern of German aristocrats of the time—young, handsome, wealthy and immensely arrogant. He is also cultured and skilled in several of the arts like m…