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

4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  5,051 ratings  ·  161 reviews
April 1803 – July 1805

April 1803. The Peace of Amiens is breaking down. Napoleon is building ships and amassing an army just across the Channel. Horatio Hornblower - who, at age twenty-seven, has already distinguished himself as one of the most daring and resourceful officers in the Royal Navy - commands the three-masted Hotspur on a dangerous reconnaissance mission that e
Published 1963 by Bantam (first published 1962)
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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
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
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
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
Mike (the Paladin)
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.

Michael Emond
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
K.M. Weiland
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
Drew Ck
I like the Sharpe Series better, but that's only because I like the British Army better than it's Navy.
Deb Oestreicher
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.
Georgia Carvalho
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.
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, the newly married Horatio Hornblower has been promoted to Commander, and is 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.
Earl Grey Tea
In the chronological continuation of the Hornblower series, we find Horatio Hornblower commanding his first ship ever, named the HMS Hotspur. Installment number three of the series has a narrative style that takes different parts the first two books. This book is told from the point of view of Hornblower and consists of a series of events that are all connected to each other in a clear overall story arc.

The third book of the story continues with the development of the protagonist Horatio Hornblo
David Balmer
I had looked forward to listening to this - one of my favorite historical fiction items. But after only 5 minutes of enduring the reader's over-the-top reading style, I had to stop. Mr. Coster, the reader, has an affected approach that just grates on the ears. His voice is old, tiresome and often effeminate. As such it is completely unsuitable for such a swashbuckling tale as Horatio Hornblower. I might have persevered if Mr. Coster could have toned it down a bit and just read the story but no, ...more
Robert French
Hornblower and the Hotspur is another excellent Hornblower novel. I enjoyed it more than the first two I read (in chronological order). It dealt primarily with the blockade of France by the Channel fleet in 1803 and 1804. I have read a few books about the larger than life skirmishes and battles, but about the drudgery and difficulty of the blockade. C.S. Foresters description of the sailing battle between the Loire and the Hotspur was excellent. Few are able convey the handling of the ships and ...more
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.
Although his confidence as an officer has grown since the events of Lieutenant Hornblower, Horatio is still tormented by the belief that he lacks courage, both physical and moral. He also must combat his introverted, misanthropic nature. He may be a consummate seaman and a master tactician, but I don't think he would be much fun to be around. I'd rather have dinner with Jack Aubrey any day.

The third book (chronologically) in the Hornblower series, Hornblower and the Hotspur follows Horatio as he
Mark Wilson
I keep churning through these books. Compulsive reading, and a fascinating character. I find myself wondering where he will end up, not in the world, but within himself. Hornblower is so full of doubt and assuredness, cold logic and warm compassion, one never knows how things will finally resolve. Or _if_ they will. Often I find such conflicted characters seem complex for the sake of complexity, completely unconvincing. Not Hornblower. It will be interesting, once done, to re-read the books in p ...more
Bethany Canaan
Not even two weeks have past since the last book, and Horatio finds himself at the alter, marrying his landlady's daughter. Young Maria adores Horatio, but he is rather bewildered by the whole affair. He doesn't dare break Maria's heart, yet he knows his life holds little room for a wife and family right now. On the other hand, he's never had someone care about him so much, and try as he might to hide his emotions, he does care for Maria in return.
Just as in Midshipman Hornblower, with Horatio
Mike Franklin
Another excellent Napoleonic ‘age of sail’ story from Forester; the reader can’t help but feel the sway of the deck and the creak of the rigging whilst enjoying these books, though I confess I do need the frequent assistance of Google, both for the maps and searching nautical terminology, even after three previous books… but I am learning!

Never boring his readers, Forester conveys the subtleties of the politics of the Napoleonic wars, the rigours of life aboard a warship, the rules of honour and
russell barnes
Okay let's take it as read I love the Hornblower books, partly because they are one of my happy memories growing up and partly because they're such ripping yarns. What I really like about them is how different each is in tone and characterisation, which is quite brave - or odd - when you think about it.

In this particular instalment our previously wide-eyed hero has become a brooding, taciturn figure struggling with his new command at sea and marital state at home. It doesn't stop him, unable to
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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)
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #1) Lieutenant Hornblower (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #2) Beat to Quarters (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #6) The African Queen Hornblower and the Atropos (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order, #5)

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