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Hornblower and the "Hotspur" (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order #3)

4.25  ·  Rating Details ·  6,475 Ratings  ·  211 Reviews
Horatio Hornblower, one of the most daring and resourceful officers in the Royal Navy, commands the three-masted Hotspur on a dangerous reconnaissance mission that evolves, as the Napoleonic War breaks out, into a series of spectacular confrontations.
Audio CD, 13 pages
Published May 1st 2008 by Phoenix Audio (first published 1962)
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Popular Answered Questions

Austin Given that they were written out of chronological order, no, it is not that important.

Published order (Story Timeline order):

Beat to Quarters (#6)
Given that they were written out of chronological order, no, it is not that important.

Published order (Story Timeline order):

Beat to Quarters (#6)
Ship of the Line (#7)
Flying Colors (#8)
Commodore Hornblower (#9)
Lord Hornblower (#10)
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (#1)
Lieutenant Hornblower (#2)
Hornblower and the Atropos (#5)
Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies (#11)
Hornblower and the Hotspur (#3)
Hornblower During the Crisis (#4)(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jason Koivu
Some real quandaries of conscience beset Horatio Hornblower in this the third book in CS Forester's Hornblower series.

Peace has broken out, tossing a ton of seamen uselessly onto dry land, and Hornblower is just one of many. In his down time he manages to get himself accidentally married out of pity. It's really one of the sadder, more perplexing moments in the series. Luck does not completely abandon him though, as we see when he is made Commander upon a sloop and is sent off to the Brest bloc
May 03, 2015 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started listening to this & stopped thinking I'd missed a book, but this is definitely the third chronologically. It starts out with Hornblower getting married, rather surprising considering where we left off in the last book. Then Admiral Cornwallis makes reference to knowing Hornblower over some business with an Irishman. Again, I hadn't realized they met before the game of whist at the end of the last book. This is cleared up if you read the short story "Hornblower and the Widow McCool ...more
Oct 31, 2015 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jos jedna zabavna knjiga o zivotu i borbi na moru u Napoleonovo doba. Moram priznati ipak da ovo nije za svakoga, ko ne voli detaljniji uvid o zivotu na brodu i sta je sve potrebno da sve funkcionise kako treba, za njih bi ovo moglo biti mozda i dosadno. Mene je super.

Idemo dalje.
Mr. Matt
This book picks up right on the heels of the last. Hornblower finds himself attached to a young woman, Maria. In the last book he developed some sort of relationship with her while staying at her mother's boarding house. In fact, the book starts at the alter with Hornblower getting married. Fortunately, Hornblower is now Commander of the Hotspur. It's a tiny ship - a Sloop of War - but it is his. He's the Captain and therefore only one step from God when at sea. And he's one step away from his n ...more
Lewis Weinstein
"She was close-hauled, sir, under double-reefed tops'ls, on the starboard tack, sir." ... "He's past the wind's eye, sir. His fore tops'ls coming round. ... "Ava-a-ast!" ... "Brace all back again! Jump to it! Quartermaster! Hard-a-port!"

I have no idea what all that means, but I love reading it anyway.

I read almost the entire Patrick O'Brien series before starting Hornblower, which was written first. I like both series, not as a steady diet, but maybe one a year. Hornblower and the Hotspur (Hots
Oct 02, 2011 Bfisher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book about 50 years ago, not long after it was first published. It was then, and remains upon rereading, one of my favourite Hornblower novels, I think primarily because of how it emphasizes Hornblower’s continuing inner conflict between what he believes is expected of a RN officer and what his sense of human decency and of justice demands. Fortunately, his sense of decency and justice prevails. Since Hornblower is an outsider with no Interest, this is particularly impressive; climbe ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Nov 22, 2009 Mike (the Paladin) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I recommend these books highly. As the story continues Hornblower marries quickly (more from pity for his bride than love though he goes to lengths not to let her see this) and goes to sea in command of the Hotspur.

I won't synopsize more than that. I'll only say the adventures here are worth the read. This is another step in the life and career of one of the more iconic characters of literature. The book carries us through to see Hornblower promoted to Post Captain.

K.M. Weiland
Dec 12, 2012 K.M. Weiland rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Hornblower books get better with every installment. Hornblower is a wonderful character, flawed, nuanced, introspective, and dynamic. Forester's obvious knowledge of his subject brings a compelling and even instructive verisimilitude to the historical setting. Hornblower's little domestic troubles add a nice rounding touch the otherwise stalwart naval scenes.
Will Todd
Oct 17, 2011 Will Todd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hornblower
This review is for the complete 11-book series of THE HORNBLOWER SAGA by C.S. Forester, which I just finished reading last night.

[Note: Individual books have individual star ratings (mostly 5-star, a few 4-star), but the descriptive review will be the same for each, and encompass the entire series, as follows.]

Actually, I just finished reading the complete series for the second time, the first being as a teenager some 30 years ago.

It's remarkable to me that I have only just this moment realized
Feb 28, 2011 Nick rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
This book gives us Hornblower's first outing as a full Master & Commander of his own vessel, as a commander assigned to a sloop of war in the channel blockade.

The novel takes place after the peace between England and France has broken down and Napoleon is preparing for an invasion of England. The book does a great job of showing not only the hopelessness of this prospect (there was no way to get an army across the channel in the face of England's naval superiority) but also the precariousnes
Michael Emond
Feb 03, 2015 Michael Emond rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Last book written but third in the chronological life of our hero Horatio Hornblower. I gushed over this series in my last review and I will add the first chronological books are my favourites. We see Horatio still rising in the ranks and before his adventures on land in France and in Russia (which I did not enjoy as much). This is a worthy last book for Horatio and once again gives him all the challenges he and his ship can handle and handle it he does. This novel reads like a lot of short stor ...more
Aug 02, 2009 Penny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hornblower marries and sets off on his first independent command, participating in the blockade of Brest. As the most junior commander in the English fleet, he hugs the French coast and bribes fishermen for insights on policy ashore. His observation of France suggests tactical opportunities to Hornblower, which he then needs to diplomatically suggest to his superior officers. These combined challenges bring out the best in the young commander.

An interesting aspect of the Hornblower books is watc
The other John
Chronologically, this is the fourth book in Hornblower series, telling the tale of Horatio Hornblower's command of the Sloop-of-war HMS Hotspur. He spends over two years on this tour of duty--dealing with espionage, politics, bad weather, homesickness, and, once or twice, actual war. ... That didn't sound too exciting, did it? Well, that was my writing. Mr. Forester made it all quite interesting. It was very easy to put my feet up and lose myself in Hornblower's world of 1803.

As I enjoyed the b
Jul 21, 2011 Ben rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-calibre
What I liked about the book:

The character of hornblower: is quite interesting as adventure heroes go. I found myself reflecting from time to time on his extreme and sometimes bipolar characteristics.

Naval manuevers: to the extent a land lubber like me could appreciate this sort of thing I found his descriptions of naval manuevers and Hornblowers ingenuity to be very engaging, page-turny sort of stuff. I recently read "The Perfect Storm" and some of the maritime concepts seemed to carry over (w
Gordon Francisco
Mar 30, 2009 Gordon Francisco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-enjoyed
Finished. Truly a fun read. Forrester captures the essence of Hornblower - I am a bit miffed why he took the tack he did with Hornblower's wife? However, it is interesting to see him seemingly becoming more receptive and warmer to her affections; he appears tolerant to someone wholeheartedly dedicated to him...I am wondering why etc? And, is Hornblower going to imitiate the great Lord Nelson later in life? Time will tell I suppose.

Interesting continuation of Hornblower's life...he's growing in
Jim Puskas
Continuing immediately following "Lieutenant Hornblower", this book includes the start of Horatio's ill-fated first marriage and tells the story of his first independent command. It also shows him now as essentially a mature man with the emergence of the conflicted yet iron-willed, resourceful commander of the later stories.
In many ways, the arc of Hornblower's career, from raw teenaged Midshipman to Admiral is reflected in the quality of the writing, beginning with a series of modest adventure
Mar 01, 2015 Soraia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
No primeiro livro da sua saga, Hornblower enfrenta alguns anos negros enquanto um suboficial de 17 anos. Na sequela, narrada por um amigo, assistimos a uma verdadeira era dourada enquanto tenente, mal ainda com vinte e poucos, em que conta com a descoberta de amizade e camaradagem, e ainda a força e agilidade tanto física como intelectual da juventude plena, em que sabe o que faz e para onde vai e como.

No entanto, agora encontramos Hornblower num tom parecido com o do primeiro livro: mas já home
John Gribbin
Jan 23, 2017 John Gribbin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the best Horblower books, with an excellent sea chase.
Dec 30, 2014 Larry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this book, we see that Hornblower regrets getting married. While he is courageous in front of the enemy, he is lacks the mettle to disappoint a women that cares for him. He has no money, or family connections in the Admiralty or Royal Court. His opportunity of advancement is slight. Further, given his monotonous duties of the French blockade – and Napoleon’s 200,000 troops waiting on the coast – he has little chance at prize money. Still, he does his duty and continues to show daring – albeit ...more
Feb 08, 2016 Erik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I put this book on my list about a year ago, but when it came up to the top, I kept passing it over for something else as I couldn't get excited about the prospect of reading it. I finally decided to just go for it since I figured I must have had a good reason to put it on my reading list to begin with, and I am very glad that I did. I don't think the story itself is particularly memorable, but the descriptions of nautical life in the time of the Napoleonic wars was wonderful. I could imagine my ...more
Apr 14, 2009 Dan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic-fiction
Another 'Hornblower,' another masterpiece. If folks who have trained naval officers in qualities beneficial to command over the past two centuries have not used these books as required reading, I would be very surprised. Likewise, folks training aspiring authors of historical fiction would do well to use these books as a model.

In the past two books (chronologically speaking) Horatio Hornblower has been rising through the ranks on a couple of British Navy ships in the years leading up to the war
Jul 18, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Written later than many of the books but set earlier than most of them, this would be an excellent introduction to Horatio Hornblower's character and milieu. Although his self-consciousness sometimes grates (especially when dealing with poor Maria), this book shows more clearly than some of the others how Horatio does tend to do the right thing, it's just that his over-analysis of his own motives and the situation can drive the reader mad. From the outside he's the perfect military hero, from th ...more
Georgia Carvalho
Sep 30, 2014 Georgia Carvalho rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is probably one of C.S. Forester's best novels. In this book Hornblower is at his very best. The naval battle scenes are wonderful, especially the engagement with the Loire. You can also really feel the contrast between his professional successful self and the struggles he faces on a personal level. You can't help but really feel sorry for both him and Maria.
I listened to the audio book and the narration was nearly pitch perfect.
Deb Oestreicher
Jul 27, 2011 Deb Oestreicher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third novel in the Hornblower series. Excellent follow-up to Lieutenant Hornblower; in this novel, which is told from Hornblower's point of view, we continually encounter the duality of his character: prone to acts of reckless courage, but privately chastising himself for cowardice; by nature a kindly person, but determined to properly mete out discipline; typically confident of his duty in battle, but in his personal life, and in peacetime, full of doubt.
David Ward
Hornblower and the Hotspur (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order #3) by C.S. Forester (Back Bay Books 1962) (Fiction). It is 1803, Napoleon is building an army, and the newly married Horatio Hornblower has been promoted to Commander and given command of the three masted schooner the Hotspur. Hornblower has more worries over his interpersonal life than anything else, he avers. My rating: 7/10, finished 2005.
Todd Gutschow
Another outstanding book in the series

It's amazing how a story that moves so slow has the ability to capture one's imagination so thoroughly. Forester's command of the subject matter and eloquent writing style marvelously sweeps you away to another time and place.
Sep 11, 2008 Jed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The adventures and battles are incredibly told. I just wished they would leave out his moralizing. In fact, just cut is wife out of the plot altogether.
Drew Ck
Feb 15, 2015 Drew Ck rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I like the Sharpe Series better, but that's only because I like the British Army better than it's Navy.
Adelaide Mcginnity
See? Things are much better now that Hornblower is the main character again. Stick with the program, Forester!
Jan 02, 2017 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A long drawn out plot, soaked in detail and description as Hornblower's sloop spends months at sea observing the coast of Breast in perilous conditions. His first main command being a small vessel, 100 souls and green grimy drinking water, we see Hornblower begin his transformation from a young man to a rigid seaman.

A more slow paced novel, one gets a more intimate feeling of the Hotspur, a crowded vessel overcome by the dull nature of blockade duty. Forester does add some thrilling action, but
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Cecil Scott Forester was the pen name of Cecil Louis Troughton Smith, an English novelist who rose to fame with tales of adventure and military crusades. His most notable works were the 11-book Horatio Hornblower series, about naval warfare during the Napoleonic era, and The African Queen (1935; filmed in 1951 by John Huston). His novels A Ship of the Line and Flying Colours were jointly awarded t ...more
More about C.S. Forester...

Other Books in the Series

Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #1)
  • Lieutenant Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #2)
  • Hornblower During the Crisis (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #4)
  • Hornblower and the Atropos (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #5)
  • Beat to Quarters (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #6)
  • Ship of the Line (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #7)
  • Flying Colours (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #8)
  • Commodore Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order #9)
  • Lord Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order #10)
  • Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #11)

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