Leon Huet's Reviews > The Assiduous Quest of Tobias Hopkins: The Complete Novel

The Assiduous Quest of Tobias Hopkins by James Faro
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it was amazing

A terrifically well-written novel that immediately immersed me within the 17th century Caribbean, with all the swashbuckling and adventure that brings to mind. The author writes in a lyrical, literary way that brings the story to life from the first page, plunging us into the sights, sounds and tastes of another world. Some might not be accustomed to (or like) a narrator who doesn’t spell everything out, but for me it really adds to the colour and believability of a tale – one you’re given fleeting glimpses into. In fact, I’d go so far to say that this author has crafted a compelling and distinctive ‘voice’; something not many are able to claim.

I wouldn’t normally opt for a historical novel about seafaring adventures, but I hugely enjoyed the story and the characters. I’m also not hugely clued up on naval traditions, but from a land forces military perspective, a young man of the right class in the 17th century could certainly expect to be in command of older and more experienced men, such as the seadogs who follow the protagonist Hopkins – something questioned by other reviewers. I found him to be an interesting, appealing and principled character who was realistically tempered by the older, but lower class, John Fowler.

The author has a tremendous ear for the stilted, precise dialogue of the 17th century (particularly when it is mixed with seafaring slang), as well as detail and original metaphor. Furthermore, as is frequently the case with more literary novels, it is often the quality of writing amongst all else that compels one to keep reading. To marry it with a well-drawn cast of characters, mystery, drama, intrigue, adventure and a vivid, vibrant world, is hugely commendable.
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Reading Progress

November 30, 2016 – Started Reading
December 2, 2016 – Shelved
December 2, 2016 – Finished Reading

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