Alexander ('Toby') Scrimgeour went to Osborne in 1910 and in the summer of 1914 left Dartmouth to join the Fleet as a midshipman, appointed to the cruiser HMS Crescent. In the August her round of flagshowing was interrupted by the Kaiser and she was sent as flagship of the Northern Patrol. In the winter she sustained enormous storm damage and her company transferred to the Armed Merchant Cruiser, ex-Allan line liner, HMS Alsatian. The AMCs were hugely more effective as being more weatherly and able to stay out for five weeks between coalings as opposed to seven days. In late 1915 in order to brush up for his exams Scrimgeour was transferred to HMS Invincible and the far smarter and more expensive live of the Battle cruiser force. He had been keeping a personal diary since his Osborne days and continued this, quite illegally, throughout his war. Recently discovered and edited, this book is fleshed out with his letters home and extracts and sketches from his Midshipman's Journal from the Northern Patrol. The free criticisms of his seniors make interesting reading, as does the intimate snapshot of Gunroom life and of partying ashore (and on board) and the author pining for his girlfriend who seems to have played him along a bit. If you think you've seen heavy weather, try the pre-Dreadnought HMS Albemarle shipping it into the foretop in the Pentland Firth and having her entire bridge washed away. No end of vignettes like that; sometimes the Northern Patrol account seems a bit dreary and repetitive, but the value there is that that is exactly how it was. Scrimgeour's Scribbling Diary: The Truly Astonishing Diary and Letters of an Edwardian Gentleman, Naval Officer, Boy and Son: Amazon.co.uk: Alexander Scrimgeour: Books His later Journal and diary went down with this clearly clever and very promising young officer at Jutland.