Molly's Reviews > Desolation Island

Desolation Island by Patrick O'Brian
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's review
Jun 03, 2012

really liked it
Read from June 03 to 11, 2012

I took a long break between the 4th and 5th books, but there was no problem picking back up. This books shares a similar arc with its predecessors—off on a sailing adventure, problems encountered with the vessel, bit of fighting, some sad losses, problems resolved. O'Brian continues to introduce some wonderful psychological examinations, and these I find most compelling. At the beginning of the book, we have Jack on shore: full of good cheer, but, like many of us often do, he finds himself suffering from his lack of expertise and his lack of insight, and the result is that he is often impractical and taken advantage of. But at sea, he is incredibly self-possessed and clear-headed, and the contrast is wonderful, not only because it is satisfying to see Jack flourishing, but also because we'd all like to believe that while we are bumbling in some contexts, we may be commanding in others.

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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by HBalikov (new)

HBalikov It's been a long time since I read this one, but I think that I remember that it has those scenes of English country domesticity and later a wonderful window on the Anglo-American tensions when Aubrey encounters a whaler.

Molly Yup. The American-Brit stuff seems to be building.

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