I'm a Hornblower fan, but unlike so many others, I've never enjoyed Patrick O'Brian's naval books. (They are fine books, I know; for some reason, they just don't click with me.) So I was delighted to find "Kydd," a Napoleonic seafaring adventure, capturing my interest almost from the first page, as the hero is unhappily pressed into service in the Royal Navy. Unlike Hornblower, Kydd is a rankless landlubber, which enables Stockwin to provide a new and interesting perspective. Like the C.S. Forester novels, though, "Kydd" is fast-paced and interesting. This is a promising start to what one hopes will be a long series.