As commander-in-chief of His Majesty's ships and vessels in the West Indies, Admiral Hornblower faces pirates, revolutionaries, and a blistering hurricane in the chaotic aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars.
In an exciting novel set in the age of sail, one of the first Scotsmen to command a ship in Nelson's navy battles Spanish and French enemies, as well dangerous seas and his volatile crew, to establish a reputation for himself.
In this epic, the Chesapeake Bay region gets Michener's novel treatment. From Indians to religious pilgrims, from pirates to slave holders, from Quakers to desperate Irish immigrants, the people come in and make their mark on the windy marshes and tidal basins of the Chesapeake Bay.
Harry Ludlow, forced out of the Royal Navy, becomes a privateer in partnership with his younger brother James. But for the Ludlows, murder and intrigue take more of their time than hunting fat trading vessels. Harry and James find themselves aboard the Navy's 74-gun Magnanime. In command is a captain with whom Harry has crossed swords in the past. When James is found standing over the body of a dead officer, Harry's feud shifts into the background.
A superb account of the traditions and legends of the people who live by the sea; their beliefs and superstitions about boatbuilding, the weather, creatures real and legendary, the ghosts and saints and demons that surround and influence their lives. (Publisher's description)
This, the first in the splendid series of Jack Aubrey novels, establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, R.N., and Stephen Maturin, ship's surgeon and intelligence agent, against a thrilling backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. Details of life aboard a man-of-war are faultlessly rendered: the conversational idiom of the officers in the ward room and the men on the lower deck, the food, the floggings, the mysteries of the wind and the rigging, and the roar of broadsides as the great ships close in battle.