Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Black Ship” as Want to Read:
The Black Ship
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Black Ship

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  67 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Leg has it that Patrick O'Brian's editor paid that author's first manuscript what he considered to be high praise indeed: he compared it to the works of Dudley Pope. The late Pope's naval histories are renowned for the way they share the riveting, evocative character of his novels. This is true of none more than his masterly The Black Ship, a work of nonfiction that reads ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published June 15th 1998 by Holt Paperbacks
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Black Ship, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Black Ship

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 134)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Eric_W
Dudley Pope, author of the Ramage series, has written an absorbing history of the most bloody mutiny to occur in the English navy .
His Majesty's frigates during the late 18th century were crammed with men. It was an unusual captain who managed to keep the men reasonably content and safe under such circumstances. The Hermione, a very small ship, carried 170 at the time of her crew's mutiny against Captain Pigot. Even though the normal complement was 220 for such a small warship, that was a lot o
...more
Vasha7
Most history books, when they set out to narrate an episode of the past, also have a thesis they want to argue. In the case of The Black Ship, you might say that Dudley Pope is writing a rebuttal to a letter by Sir Hyde Parker, Commander-in-Chief of the naval operations in the West Indies, who, fearful that revolutionary potential lurked in the minds of sailors, argued that all the men who had been aboard the Hermione at the time of the mutiny should be hanged, even if it could be clearly shown ...more
Reni
What a curious book.

Parts of this book read like a novel, but it is non-fiction, all events, down to dialogue, etc. are taken from court martial transcripts, letters or diaries. This makes for a thrilling but also exciting read, not just on mutiny in the Age of Sail, but the book also has a few things to say on hierarchy aboard ship and types of leadership in general.

However, if you are just looking for a narrative about the Hermione mutiny I can understand why this book could be considered over
...more
Brianna
I feel like this could have been an amazing novella-sized non-fictional account, but the author made this a little longer than it should have been.

Also, I was kind of put off by the foreward which accuses the author of putting too much weight into the account of the midshipman, who apparently "played up" the Captain's atrocities. I mean, I appreciate the warning to take it with a grain of salt, but it made me doubt why I was reading the book a'tall.
Cathy
I'm not sure why I, a land-locked Midwestern mom, should like naval history and fiction so much ... but there it is. This book was full of revealing details about how the British Navy actually functioned, and made me wonder why there weren't MORE mutinies. Very well-written and fascinating subject matter, but also borderline disturbing, the institutionalized mistreatment of human beings.
Steve Goble
An excellent account of the horrid conditions and poor leadership that led to a bloody mutiny aboard H.M.S. Hermione, the various paths taken by the mutineers and the subsequent hanging of many of them, the surrendering of the ship to the Spaniards and the later daring recovery of the ship by the British.
Trevor Lee


I agree with some of the reviews that the book was to long
But there was a great deal to write about, it could have been shortened
Dave Myer
a surprisingly good read for such a thorough historical account…also offers some great commentary on leadership
Pedja

Slow working but methodical and reliable.
Rick Smith
Excellent. Just excellent.
Francis Kiger
Francis Kiger is currently reading it
Nov 08, 2014
Shawn Mirander
Shawn Mirander marked it as to-read
Nov 06, 2014
Jenna
Jenna added it
Oct 31, 2014
Veeral
Veeral marked it as to-read
Oct 24, 2014
B. Mantler
B. Mantler marked it as to-read
Oct 19, 2014
Neverdust
Neverdust marked it as to-read
Oct 02, 2014
Nicholas Dorman
Nicholas Dorman marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2014
Dalerl
Dalerl marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2014
Jordan
Jordan marked it as to-read
Jun 22, 2014
Cktso
Cktso marked it as to-read
Jun 13, 2014
Francie Grice
Francie Grice marked it as to-read
May 19, 2014
Justwinter
Justwinter marked it as to-read
Apr 13, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
35340
Dudley Pope was born in Ashford, Kent.

By concealing his age, Pope joined the Home Guard aged 14 and at age 16 joined the Merchant Navy as a cadet. His ship was torpedoed the next year (1942). Afterwards, he spent two weeks in a lifeboat with the few other survivors.

After he was invalided out of the Merchant Navy, the only obvious sign of the injuries Pope had suffered was a joint missing from on
...more
More about Dudley Pope...
Ramage (The Lord Ramage Novels, #1) Ramage & the Drumbeat (The Lord Ramage Novels, #2) Ramage & the Freebooters (The Lord Ramage Novels, #3) Ramage's Prize (The Lord Ramage Novels, #5) Ramage's Diamond (The Lord Ramage Novels, #7)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »