“Lucky” Jack Aubrey and his friend Stephen Maturin accept a commission to the East Indies in this tale of Nelson’s navy.
H.M.S. Surprise follows the variable fortunes of Captain Jack Aubrey’s career in Nelson’s navy as he attempts to hold his ground against admirals, colleagues and the enemy, accepting a mission to convey a British ambassador to the East Indies. The voyage takes him and his friend Stephen Maturin to the strange sights and smells of the Indian sub-continent, and through the archipelago of spice islands where the French have a near-overwhelming superiority.
Rarely has a novel managed to convey more vividly the fragility of a sailing ship in a wild sea. Rarely has a historical novelist combined action and lyricism of style in the way that O’ Brian does. His superb sense of place, brilliant characterisation, and a vigour and joy of writing lift O’Brian above any but the most exalted of comparisons.
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‘Few, very few, books have made my heart thump with excitement. H.M.S. Surprise managed it. [O’Brian’s] erudition is phenomenal, as is his capacity for creating another completely believable world. I might have given a better idea of this book if I had simply written 600 times the word
“superb”.’ Helen Lucy Burke, Irish Times
‘As sinewy, and virile as its predecessors, this is a copper-bottomed investment for the numerous fans of Jack Aubrey… we sail breathlessly through perilous seas to the Far East. Vivid and authentic as is Mr O’Brian’s mastery of period and life at sea, it is in his creation of characters that he excels.’
Sarah Lake, Daily Telegraph
Patrick O’Brian, until his death in 2000, was one of our greatest contemporary novelists. He is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey–Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso. He is the author of many other books including Testimonies, and his Collected Short Stories. In 1995 he was the first recipient of the Heywood Hill Prize for a lifetime’s contribution to literature. In the same year he was awarded the CBE. In 1997 he received an honorary doctorate of letters from Trinity College, Dublin. He lived for many years in South West France and he died in Dublin in January 2000.
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 2019. Book Condition: Good. Abridged edition. N/A. Ships from the UK. Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP88304394
Book Description HarperCollins, 2010. Audio CD. Book Condition: Good. Audio book. Minor surface scratches to the discs. Cracked case. Good condition is defined as: a copy that has been read but remains in clean condition. All of the pages are intact and the cover is intact and the spine may show signs of wear. The book may have minor markings which are not specifically mentioned. Most items will be dispatched the same or the next working day. Bookseller Inventory # mon0006081158
Book Description Harper. Book Condition: Very Good. 3 CDs abridged. The largest secondhand bookshop in the Midlands. Bookseller Inventory # 00075118
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, U.S.A., 2010. Audio Book (CD). Book Condition: Very Good. Read by actor Robert Hardy. CDs tested and play well. Sturdy clamshell case. Benefits the Friends of the Albany, Ca library. Bookseller Inventory # 031131
Book Description Book Condition: Good. HMS Surprise CD. Bookseller Inventory # Grb2743519