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Age of Fighting Sail Fiction

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Originally posted by Lance Williams View Post
    I now have the Henderson book which is really the combined reprinting of two separate books. It gives great insight into the differences between life on the smaller ships and that experienced on a ship-of-the-line with lots of eyewitness accounts. It's detailed accounts of smaller craft and their monotony/excitement makes it a good companion for Mostert's fine overview. Lots of good maps and diagrams.
    After finishing these books I would recommend them even more as great background companions for anyone who wants the facts behind the historical naval fiction set in the French Revolution/Napoleonic War period. In particular, the Henderson book(s) cover just about every "unique/spectacular" smaller ship story line covered in the Aubrey/Hornblower/Bolitho/Kydd series, while Monstert clearly explains how the conflicts at sea affected the corresponding campaigns/battles on land. They are excellent individually, but read in tandem they really fill almost all of the niches an avid reader of the period could want, easily some of the best money I have spent in a long time on a history book(s).

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    I now have the Henderson book which is really the combined reprinting of two separate books. It gives great insight into the differences between life on the smaller ships and that experienced on a ship-of-the-line with lots of eyewitness accounts. It's detailed accounts of smaller craft and their monotony/excitement makes it a good companion for Mostert's fine overview. Lots of good maps and diagrams.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Originally posted by Lance Williams View Post
    After reading so much fiction about the age of sail I've decided to get some non-fiction books on the topic. I have several books by Howard Chapelle that really cover American ships of the era. Now I've ordered some reasonably priced used books through Amazon. They are "The Line Upon the Wind: The Great War at Sea, 1793-1815" by Noel Mostert and "Frigates, Sloops and Brigs" by James Henderson. I was just wondering if anyone has read either of these books?
    I finally got Mostert's book in the mail yesterday. It is comprehensive (700 pages) with excellent maps. This is the best single volume about naval warfare in the age of sail that I have found, and it was a bargain used on Amazon for $4.08.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    After reading so much fiction about the age of sail I've decided to get some non-fiction books on the topic. I have several books by Howard Chapelle that really cover American ships of the era. Now I've ordered some reasonably priced used books through Amazon. They are "The Line Upon the Wind: The Great War at Sea, 1793-1815" by Noel Mostert and "Frigates, Sloops and Brigs" by James Henderson. I was just wondering if anyone has read either of these books?

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Matty Graves Series

    I started reading "No Quarter", the first of Broos Campbell's Matty Graves series, and I have to say that for the first 100 pages I am already feeling disappointed when compared to Hornblower, Lewrie, Aubrey, Ramage, Kydd and even Bolitho. I find the style a bit forced and there have already been some historical inaccuracies that I'm having difficulty getting past. It's a pity because it covers a viewpoint (the fledgling American Navy) that none of the others have taken. Has anyone else read them?
    Last edited by Lance Williams; 26 Apr 13, 14:02.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    For Hornblower fans I just stumbled across a companion book that Forester wrote shortly before he died. It has maps and a synopsys of all ten novels. The maps are especially helpful.

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  • JWalters
    replied
    Loved Forester, O'Brian, and Lambdin. Kent's Bolitho novels, on the other hand, soon got into a terrible serial rut. The supporting characters were little better than cyphers, and even after the half dozen novels I read had received zero development. Worst of all, Kent got several technical points wrong, some of them blatantly so.

    Originally posted by Lance Williams View Post
    In the last year I have read all of the major fictional series that occur in the 1770-1820 period of the age of sail. I have enjoyed all of them with their slightly different takes on the period. They include:

    The Hornblower Series by C.F. Forester
    The Aubrey/Maturin Series by Patrick O'Brian
    The Bolitho Series by Alexander Kent
    The Lewrie Series by Dewey Lambdin
    The Ramage Series by Dudley Pope

    and I'm still trying to find the Matty Groves series by Broos Campbell

    If I had to nitpick I guess that Lambdin's Alan Lewrie would be my favorite, but not by much. Are there any other series from this period that anyone might recommend and what are your personal favorites.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    I finally found the first two books in the Matty Graves series by Broos Campbell, has anyone read them? I suspect they may be a bit different because they're written from the American point of view They begin during the Quasi War with France which is a very overlooked historical period.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    I finally found the first two books in the Matty Graves series by Broos Campbell, has anyone read them? I suspect they may be a bit different because they're written from the American point of view They begin during the Quasi War with France which is a very overlooked historical period.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Originally posted by Lance Williams View Post
    I just picked up "Hostile Shores" from the library. It covers the British invasions of Cape Town and the River Plate. It should be interesting to see how it compares to Julian Stockwin's Kydd covering the same events.
    I just finished "Hostile Shores". I enjoyed it as I have all of the Lewrie series, but it does not go into the detail of the campaigns the way the Kydd series did. They cover in one novel what took up two books for Kydd. Either way Sir Home Riggs Popham was lucky that his misadventure in Argentina reaped 1.6 million Spanish dollars in Droits for the Crown or he likely would have received far harsher punishment than just a severe repremand.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Originally posted by Lance Williams View Post
    Well fans it looks like a new Dewey Lambdin Alan Lewrie novel titled "Hostile Shores" has just been released and I've also found that Donald Donachie has several series set in the French Revolution period, has anyone read them?
    I just picked up "Hostile Shores" from the library. It covers the British invasions of Cape Town and the River Plate. It should be interesting to see how it compares to Julian Stockwin's Kydd covering the same events.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Well fans it looks like a new Dewey Lambdin Alan Lewrie novel titled "Hostile Shores" has just been released and I've also found that Donald Donachie has several series set in the French Revolution period, has anyone read them?
    Last edited by Lance Williams; 08 Mar 13, 16:17.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Originally posted by GCoyote View Post
    The Flesh and Blood Behind Horatio Hornblower


    http://www.historynet.com/mhq-review...hornblower.htm
    Well I'm about 2/3rds of the way through Commander and it certainly is a great background for any fan of fiction in the Age of Fighting Sail. That being said I find Taylor a bit dull at times, but even that is often saved by quotations from letters of the period and notes from ships logs. Sometimes you have to "read between the lines" (as Taylor often does) to get the true picture. If nothing else it shows the competition, rivalry, and sometimes hatred that occurred between these captains/admirals in their quest for glory and prize money. It also shows the frequent cronyism/nepotism that was rampant in the Royal Navy and that the seniority system all to often promoted the incompetant to flag positions. It also is pretty clear that Pellew was an inspiration for both the Aubrey and Kydd characters and to a lesser extent Bolitho.

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  • modelsinchina
    replied
    Thanks guys, looking forward to that, there is just something about the age of sail.

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  • Lance Williams
    replied
    Thanks Greybriar,

    I have tried to read all of the series in chronilogical order, even if they weren't written in chronilogical order, to try and guage they're historical accuracy. Many have website that help put them in order.

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