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on May 18, 2017
I love this series of Napoleon England's naval anti-hero Allan Lewrie, who always manages to wind up the hero.
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on May 3, 2016
Great sequel
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on May 24, 2015
Loved it like the others. Thank you
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on June 16, 2014
I liked it. Adventure is there.
The explanation of the nautical terms is good (thanks to Kindle).
Recommend it to all lover of 1700, 1800 sea stories.
A difficult time to live.
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on July 12, 2004
I've read now all but one of the series of Alan Lewrie naval adventures and I must say that what started out as a most promising set of novels has gone sour. The early works saw Lewrie as the young rascal, adventurous, but with a sometimes troubling morality. Now, however, he has evolved into nothing more than a middle-aged ship's captain befuddled with marital problems due to his past sexual escapades. In point of fact, nothing much really happens in this book. The author has seen fit to follow Lewrie's career chronologically, so this tale is set during a period after the Noire mutiny when, well, not much of anthing was going on in the British navy. I once again found myself constantly scimming tens of pages in order to locate a little action. King's Captain (the book before this) is a much more interesting work as it involves Lewrie's psychological efforts to thwart mutiny. This novel is just boring. If you want to enjoy Alan Lewrie at his best--read the early Lambdin novels and forget these later efforts. Remember, there is always O'Brien's Jack Aubrey and Forester's Horation Hornblower.
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on December 1, 2003
I am in some agreement with the fellow who wrote that you needed to read the earlier books in this series to understand everything that was going on because I didn't. . . and I didn't. That said, I still enjoyed this pretty good actioner, though I think there have probably been enough British naval heros in contemporary literature. This one has the distinction of being more of a rogue than some, so he's interesting in a Flashman sort of way. I guess as an American I'm pretty fond of James L. Nelson, whose Isaac Biddlecomb is the quintessential reluctant warrior/Yankee capitalist and whose stories celebrate a Navy other than the British Royal (and underdogs to boot). This was a good fast read, but just cannon fodder till the next Nelson book is out. I will definitely go back, though, and read the rest of this series.
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on November 6, 2002
Contrary to some reviewers' comments, I found this a solid and enjoyable addition to the unfolding Lewrie adventures. Granted, it didn't have cannons blasting on every other page, but the story moved the main characters forward on occasionally surprising, though utterly believable paths. Moreover, it did what I expect of all readable historical novels; i.e., it provided solid information about an aspect of history of which I knew little--in this case the on-going slave rebellions in the West Indies--while keeping me interested in the overall story line and characters.
I've read all the Hornblower books, as well as the entire O'Brian collection, and although I enjoyed them enormously, I find the Lewrie books the most enjoyable of the lot. The main character is clearly the most interesting to be found in these three series, resembling the roguish Flashman in George MacDonald Fraser's terrific series.
If you're looking for the print equivalent of a John Woo movie, with massive explosions on every other page, I'd recommend going to a John Woo movie or reading a comic book, rather than this novel. But if you enjoy seeing a character develop believably, beset by an interesting and plausible set of non-stop difficulties against the backdrop of fascinating history--and would like to stay plugged in to the undoubtedly interesting things to come in this rascal's career--I'd highly recommend reading this and all the other books in Lambdin's Alan Lewrie series.
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on October 5, 2002
This is the 10th novel in a series about Royal Navy officer Alan Lewrie. It would be difficult to understand large portions of the plot without reading the earlier novels. After the previous novels ("Jester's Fortune," etc.), this one was a disappointment. The novel starts with Lewrie out on the town with his father, with a broken arm and an indication of troubles with his wife. The author then uses one chapter to flash back to Camperdown to explain the broken arm, and a second chapter to flash back to earlier in the day and a very public confrontation with his wife. Considering Caroline's past use of a pistol (see "the Gun Ketch"), Lewrie is lucky to come away with his hide intact.
Lewrie finds himself somewhat out of favor at the Admiralty, and is sent off to the West Indies (at least he has a command). The author tends to use large amounts of space on trivia, while barely mentioning things of significance (delivering dispatches to Admiral Jervis is covered in a sentence). There are places where the story seems to move forward in jumps. Old acquaintances are dragged into the story here and there as Lewrie is finally back into action in a series of engagements, either with the enemy or with available women. The losses from tropical fevers are described by Frederick Hoffman in his autobiography, "A Sailor of King George."
The novel seems to alternate between naval action, discussions of moral philosophy, short discourses on history or geography, and incidents in Lewrie's love life. The story is left unfinished. Caroline has thrown him out and wants most of his assets, his young daughter publicly calls him a sinner, his sons have been sent off to a boarding school, one of his friends wants him as a second in a planned duel, and the evil Choundos is back. The story has graphic sexual content which does not improve a mediocre novel.
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on October 4, 2002
I have read all of Lambdin's previous Lewrie books, but I don't remember being so annoyed by his habit of putting naval slang in quotation marks. Secondly, halfway through the book, there has been little but talk with his friend Cashman ashore. As I found myself skimming rather than reading more and more pages, I decided to stop altogether, and return to Forester, a real prose stylist, even if his character is a little priggish.
Or reread O'Brian, whose character is appealing, and his prose wonderful. Lambdin does not belong on the same shelf.
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