Alan Villiers, who knows ""the way of a ship,"" tells the story of the Yorkshire farmer's son who grew up to command three exploratory expeditions in the Pacific. Chagrined that the private man is not in evidence (Mrs. Cook destroyed papers, Captain Cook's log is all business), he nevertheless builds up a sense of his character and competence. With his concern for the crew (and a prepossessing assortment of antiscurbotics in tow), his seamanship and stalwartness, Captain Cook was a good man to sail under. Murdered by natives in Hawaii on his third voyage out, Captain Cook's ""real memorial is on the map of the world, above all the Pacific Ocean."" A convincing portrait, an engaging, craftsmanlike book.