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The Moghul

3.68  ·  Rating Details  ·  550 Ratings  ·  50 Reviews
It was a time of greatness, when one man could change the tide of history. And one man did.

Captain Brian Hawksworth sailed to India, that dark and foreboding land of mystery, to live and breathe the majestic life of an epic. He loved with passion, fought with heroism, vowing to make his mark upon the world.

But Hawksworth, ship's captain and emissary of King James, would fi
...more
Mass Market Paperback, 652 pages
Published October 28th 1984 by ZEBRA BOOKS (first published May 1983)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,249)
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Linda
Mar 26, 2014 Linda rated it it was amazing
A very enjoyable read. To the person at Goodreads who just called me "silly", you need another job Your comment took away the pleasure I generally feel when writing a review of a book that I really enjoyed reading. Mr. Hoover deserves praise for a job well done. Before you write a disturbing message to a reader, you need to think about the author too.
Susan
Jun 23, 2013 Susan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Contrary to a lot of other readers, I loved this book. I've loved reading about India every since I read The Far Pavilions decades ago. I can see how some may not like it. Brian Hawksworth is sent by the East India Company to go through Portuguese controlled waters and ports of India, to locate the Indian Moghul and establish trade. What the Company doesn't know is that Hawksworth also carries a letter from King James to the Moghul. Luck or karma was with Hawksworth as he was able to land in Ind ...more
Ken Consaul
I'd give another half star if I could. Liked it but had some issues
Like many reviewers, I started reading The Moghul and thought, Shogun. Unwelcome foreigner embraces a foreign culture and becomes involved in the polticial intrigue of the country. Good storyline but the author, at least in my view, wandered away too often and too long in exploring the culture and Hindu and Islamic theology. It seemed like page after page went on about ragas and sitars and conversations comparing the merits of En
...more
Tariq Mahmood
Sep 09, 2013 Tariq Mahmood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tonight we are many, but in battle the many are nothing. In battle there is only the one. Each of you is that one.' Shah Jehan. Thomas has done a masterly job of bringing alive a lost era of splendour and glory of the Muslim power in 16th century India. A time of absolute Moghul power which both the Portuguese and the English fighting sought after. They never dreamed of taking over India. All they were after was trading rights. Thomas has demonstrated great cultural insight of the time. Read and ...more
Karunakaran N.
The Moghul by Thomas Hoover.... Fiction in reality... The author has created fictitious characters like Akman, Arangbar, Nadir Sharif, Shirin, Queen Janahara and Prince Jadar having semblance to the real characters of Akbar, Jahangir, Nur Jahan and Shah Jehan. The English Brian Hawksworth in reality is Willam Hawkins. Though some would not relish the book but the authors effort to define the richness and prosperity of India is at its best. For some one who had been on the trail of the historic p ...more
John
Apr 07, 2013 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Set in India, this book follows the appearance of the first English trader to establish a foothold there.
Based to a degree on historical personages that become quite real and entertaining. It is the historical setting; politically, culturally, and the like, that carry the book.
The detail is magical when seen as deftly placed portions of the authors larger, multi-facited canvas.
My attention was rapt, with minor exceptions where we kind of wandered the countryside (not too bad, that, by itself), b
...more
Cathy
I'm at the very outset -- so far this is reading like a Shogun carbon-copy, but in 1600's India instead of Japan. Once again, those wily Portuguese got there first!

Finished -- yep, it's Shogun, but with a less-interesting protagonist, weaker characters, and lots of didactic dialogue. Also tantric sex, black plague, and people being executed by elephant. It was still fun to read, but a bit on the trashy side.
Catherine
Stopped reading with about 70% completed when I realized I was just skimming page after page. I thought this would be like Shogun in India, but the story never drew me in, the characters never came alive, and I saw next to nothing of India itself beyond the political maneuvering of the Moghul's court. I was sadly disappointed by this one.
Ruth
May 14, 2016 Ruth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
c1983: FWFTB: India, 1620, India, Portuguese, sea battles. In truth, this was a re-read and it was just as enjoyable as I remember it. I went through a phase of hefty historical books (actually, I am probably still in it) and Hoover wrote of distant land and the history of the place that I was not terribly aware of. There is a lot of descriptive writing - nicely done - but does slow the pacing down a bit. Recommended to the normal crew. " His entire body would perceptibly tense as the drummer be ...more
Bertport
Hoover's Moghul feels at first like a shadow of Patrick O'Brian, with its well told battle between two English frigates and four Portuguese galleons off the Indian port of Surat in the seventeenth century. The prose is not as fine as O'Brian's, but sturdy enough, and I welcome the attempt to bring another chapter in the history of the British Empire to life. But O'Brian is soon forgotten as the protagonist Brian Hawksworth goes ashore and makes his way to the Moghul court at Agra. It turns out t ...more
Frank Shedd
Jun 12, 2011 Frank Shedd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
reminded me of Shogun
thats good
but different as India is different from Japan
Linda
Nov 01, 2014 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Remarkably evocative ... I actually felt I was in 17th century India.
Tom Webster
Apr 10, 2015 Tom Webster rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If there were a little bit less time devoted to the differences between the sitar and the bloody lute Hawksworth dragged halfway round the world I would probably have given 5 stars.

Unlike some people I didn't have a problem with the differences between Hindu and Islamic culture etc. as that clash of cultures is a defining trait of the entire colonial period of history.

Overall, very enjoyable. Even if it is Shogun set in India!
Nana Marfo
Jul 12, 2016 Nana Marfo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A well-grounded and substantive work

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was rich in substance and clearly a product of excellent research. The story flowed very well and naturally. Great piece of writing. This book and Hoover's other historical novel Caribbee are truly remarkable to say the least.
Twoina
Apr 19, 2014 Twoina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is not my usual reading choice but I really enjoyed this book. I'm working my way though my library of hundreds of books collected over decades. This one was one of my Mom's books. Sometimes the point of view changes were a little confusing but not really a problem.
Neil Miller
A good read with a rich cultural backdrop

Knowing practically nothing of Indian culture this book was quite interesting. It urged me to look more into India and its history and culture. It paints quite a lavish picture that seems compelling. However, I didn't like the excessive descriptions of wardrobes, backgrounds, and surroundings. It seemed a little much at times. And the ending didn't leave off with a good sense of closure.
Parker Nash
Apr 14, 2014 Parker Nash rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be both extremely interesting. There were no spectacularly unique characters, but this book is more about plot and setting. I have seen this described by other reviewers as Shogun in India...and I can't disagree, but since the setting and culture are so different it felt unique to me. This book is meticulously researched and had a absolutely authentic feel.
Niles  Perkins
Nov 23, 2014 Niles Perkins rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simply wonderful. I so enjoyed that marvelous tale of the exotic of India, and the intrigue of the Moghul's course, and the adventures of Capt. Hawksworth! Bravo
Apurva S
Sep 09, 2015 Apurva S rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Liked the description, characters and the narration. Not so much the plot. Plot is a bit unrealistic for me.
Divyaroop Bhatnagar
Hoover tries to capture the grand scale of Moghul India and almost pulls it off. Brian Hawksworth is an unlikely hero but I guess it's more about the smart English pulling the wool over the wily Portuguese. It could have been an early Henty novel from that point of view. The descriptions tend to be be over detailed but in a sense they add to the richness of the setting. The sensuality can be a bit embarrassing. Maybe Hoover got caught up in the whole oriental seduction stuff. He does sound a bit ...more
Tony Duxbury
May 31, 2015 Tony Duxbury rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lovely historical romp in exotic places!
Teejaybee
I enjoyed this book although it was a long read and I don't have as much time as I'd like to sit down and read for long periods, so it took me a while to get through it. When I read a historical novel like this, I always wonder how close to fact the details are. I liked the explanation at the end of the story describing where certain characters and events were sourced from. All in all a good read despite the usual "lone hero comes good despite all the odds " predictibility. Historical narrative ...more
Val Wilkerson
I had a hard time with the names in this book, keeping track of who was
what. Otherwise its a tale of when England went to India to trade with them
in the 1600's, they had to fight the Portugese to get into India. Then Hawksworth,
the main character ended up staying in India when his ships returned to England.
I loved the part of the story describing those days in India, when wars were fought
on elephants, the leaders had up to 100 wives, the dress, the jewels, the smells,
the architecture, all very i
...more
Alyssa
Feb 10, 2013 Alyssa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in Asia in the 17th century
I loved everything about this book except the lack of organization where the story was concerned. That vagueness extended even to the relationships between the hero and the people around him as well as the timeline the hero was in Mogul India. Good story, though; a better writer could whip the fuzziness out of it. I had questions over the course of the book as to why some characters were involved in the story as they served no useful purpose. Ah, well-it is a part of the world that still intrigu ...more
Betty
Jun 06, 2013 Betty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At first, I was not sure I would like this book. During Chapter 1, I told myself to try to read at least a couple of chapters before giving up. Chapter 2 piqued my interest a bit. By the end of Chapter 3, I was hooked. The Moghul is one of those rare books that is so much better than the short "teaser" description. This is very likely to be a book that I will read again.
BC or Brenda
Jul 01, 2016 BC or Brenda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Worth the read

I was rather confused when I started reading this book. The sea battle and wondering where the story was going. But as I continued to read I didn't want to put it down!
bkwurm
Jul 22, 2013 bkwurm rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A little cliched. If you read Richard Clavell's Shogun, then you probably can guess the plot of this book. It follows the same plot structure of a Western adventurer who finds himself embroiled in various Oriental intrigues and, despite the obvious cultural differences that should have made him an object of scorn or digust, nevertheless manages somehow to win the affection of all these oriental women who basically throw themselves at him.

Sue
Apr 01, 2016 Sue rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book took me forever to finish. It is historical fiction about how England began its relationship with India. The main character, Hawksworth, is sent by King James to make a deal with the Indians. At this time (early 1500's), the Portugese were in charge of all shipping in India. The story is a love story, a war story, and also an explanation of the Taj Mahal and behavior of the Indian Moguls at the time.
Ken Harris
I found this book very interesting, but the story fell somewhat flat. The ending was something on the order of "and then they died."

The interesting parts were the descriptions of Indian life and the relationship between the native hindu people and the conquering/non-native muslim ruling class. The writing was good, but the story line ended badly.
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Thomas Hoover has a doctorate in oceanography and served as senior vice president of an architect-engineering firm in New York, where he has lived for several decades. His vices include being an avid sailor and a recognized collector of the classical music of India. He began his writing career with two classic non-fiction books on Far Eastern art and religion and then moved into fiction writing wi ...more
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