Days of Sail

Waves of ships battled sea and storm to bring settlers to the New World and establish trade routes. What special features allowed these craft to routinely journey across thousands of dangerous miles and what skills did the crews need to survive the voyage? You'll also find novels set in the colonies' early days, when the great and sometimes treacherous Atlantic was the only link to the world they knew.

Devil's Own Luck

By David Donachie

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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.

First of the Privateersman mystery series.

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Women Sailors & Sailors' Women: An Untold Maritime History

By David Cordingly

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"In this illuminating historical narrative, maritime scholar David Cordingly shows that in fact an astonishing number of women went to sea in the great age of sail. Some traveled as the wives or mistresses of captains. A few were smuggled aboard by officers or seaman. A number of cases have come to light of young women dressing in men's clothes and working alongside the sailors for months, and sometimes years. In the U.S. and Britsh navies, it was not uncommon for the wives of bosuns, carpenters, and cooks to go to sea on warships. Cordingly's tremendous research shows that there was indeed a thriving female population--from female pirates to the sirens of legend--on and around the high seas."

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The Devil's Own Luck

By David Donachie

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In 1793, privateer Harry Ludlow finds himself aboard the navy's 74-gun Magnanime, with his younger brother James. In command is Oliver Carter, a captain with whom Harry has an unfortunate history. When James is found standing over the body of a dead officer, Harry's feud shifts into the background. But dark secrets start to surface on all sides. First of the Privateersman series.

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The Captain's Wife: A Novel

By Douglas Kelley

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This fictionalized story is based on the life of Mary Ann Patten, who went from sea captain's wife to skipper of her husband's ship when he fell ill. He recovered enough to make her life even more difficult. Entertaining and fascinating.

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Ramage

By Dudley Pope

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The young lieutenant takes up special orders direct from Nelson himself which bring news of a mission close to his own heart. In a daring foray, under the very nose of the French Mediterranean fleet, Ramage is to sail his tiny cutter close in to the Italian shore and rescue a party of stranded aristocrats from Napoleon's fast-advancing army. First of a series.

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Master and Commander

By Patrick O'Brian

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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.

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Wake of the Perdido Star

By Gene Hackman and Daniel Lenihan

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When his parents are murdered, 17-year-old Jack O'Reilly joins the crew of the Perdido Star, facing "storms, shipwreck, hostile and friendly natives, and enemy vessels," eventually leading a renegade band called the Right Honourable Brotherhood of Shipwrecked Men.

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Treasure Island

By Robert Louis Stevenson

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While going through the possessions of a deceased guest who owed them money, the mistress of the inn and her son find a treasure map that leads to a pirate fortune as well as great danger.

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Ramage and the Saracens

By Dudley Pope

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Ordered to Naples after the battle of Trafalgar, Ramage and the Calypso are given fresh orders. The Barbary Coast pirates--the Saracens--are active in Sicily again, and terrorizing fishing ports. Ramage and his crew are sent to Sicily to track down the Saracens before they can attack another town.  Part of a series.

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Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies

By C. S. Forester

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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.

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