Born in Key West, Florida, Benerson Little grew up variously on all three US coasts. Following his graduation from Tulane University, he entered the US Navy and served as an officer for eight years, most of them as a Navy SEAL. Upon completion of Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training in 1983 (BUD/S Class 121), he was assigned first to SEAL Team THREE, then to SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team ONE. After leaving the Navy in 1989, he worked as a special operations and intelligence analyst, including for the Naval Special Warfare Strategy and Tactics Group and for a private intelligence collection and analysis firm, among other professions.
He now works as a writer and consultant in several areas, with an emphasis on maritime and naval issues, including maritime threat and security, and especially maritime history. He is considered a leading expert on piracy past and present, and is a recognized expert on pirate tactics and anti-piracy operations throughout history. He has appeared in two television documentaries on piracy, has advised on others, and is the STARZ premium cable network's historical consultant for its Black Sails series, currently filming its third season. He often advises film-makers, novelists, historians, biographers, genealogists, treasure hunters, journalists, and others.
Although he considers San Diego his hometown, he lives in Huntsville, Alabama with his wife, Mary, and with his two daughters, Courtney and Bree, at least when they're at home: one is an undergraduate, the other a grad student. In his spare time he teaches modern fencing at the Huntsville Fencing Club (and is at present writing his fencing master thesis), researches historical fencing, writes contemporary and historical novels, and develops proposals for potential television documentaries and series.
The Golden Age of Piracy describes the truth behind the great pirate myths, legends, and misconceptions, via narrative pirate histories. As with the title below, the book will put readers amidst the action. The book was originally scheduled for release in October 2011, but publisher cancelled its history line. At the moment, the revised manuscript is in the hands of the author's agent.
How History's Greatest Pirates Pillaged, Plundered, and Got Away With It brings pirate stories and tactics to life for a broad audience. Thoroughly researched, these narrative pirate histories put readers in the middle of the action.
Pirate Hunting was inspired by the need to look at piracy and other forms of sea roving from their earliest record to the present, and in particular at the measures taken to counter them. Besides being an opportunity to look at six millennia of maritime history, the subject has practical appeal today, given the increase in international piracy.
The Buccaneer's Realm was born of an interest in the role of the buccaneer, filibuster, and Spanish pirate in the development of the New World, as well as how these sea rovers influenced and were influenced by the variety of cultures and physical environments of a frontier comprising one third of the entire world.
The Sea Rover’s Practice was born of a lifelong interest in pirates and privateers, an interest originally inspired by the sea, by the fiction of Stevenson, Sabatini, and Steinbeck, by the illustrations of Pyle and Wyeth, and by the journals of Exquemelin, Dampier, and Rogers. Originally researched both for personal interest and to support the writing of historical fiction, the author soon turned the material into a book to fill a void in the literature of the sea.
Jamestown, Virginia, aboard the 20 ton flyboat Discovery. The Susan Constant is in the background.
Giving a fencing lesson.