The Floating Madhouse by Alexander Fullerton
In the summer of 1904 Tsar Nicholas II sent his Baltic fleet, mostly old crocks with untrained, potentially mutinous crews & hopelessly inefficient officers, halfway around the world to reinforce his few remaining ships in the Far East. There the Japanese fleet under Admiral Togo had been scoring success after success. The Russians' main aim was to relieve besieged Port Arthur. Mchael Henderson, Lieutenant RN, has been caught in flagrante delicto with the young Princess Natasha Volodnyakova at their estate in Injhavino. The reason for the house-party was to announce her engagement to a naval captain whom she's never set eyes on until that evening. This is of no concern at all to the arranger of the betrothal, her great uncle General Igor Volodnyakov. What does concern him is her indiscretion with Michael Henderson and, having considerable influence at Court, as well as a nephew who is an admiral & on the Board of Admiralty in St Petersburg, he's able to get rid of Henderson by offering him a privilege he can't refuse - to sail as an observer to Tsushima where one of the most devastating sea battles in history will be waged.