Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.)'s Reviews > Desolation Island

Desolation Island by Patrick O'Brian
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's review
Jul 02, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: adventure, historical-fiction, author-patrick-obrian, british-literature, nautical-seafaring, napoleonic-wars, read-in-2010
Recommended to Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) by:
Read from April 08 to 12, 2010

This was a novel that simply can't be put down once started! Incredibly suspenseful! Stephen's role as an intelligence operative becomes more fully fleshed out as he has a brilliant opportunity to strike back at Napoleon; not to mention that his medical capabilities are truly put to the test when an epidemic of "gaol fever" breaks out on the ship. Also, it was wonderful to follow the impact of the beautiful and intriguing Mrs. Louisa Wogan upon the crew and officers of the Leopard as they endeavor to escort her and other convicts to the penal colony in Australia's Botany Bay.

The novel's account of the voyage of the "horrible old Leopard" is another significant test of command and responsibility for Jack Aubrey; this, following closely on the heels of his tremendous success in The Mauritius Command. The chase of the H.M.S. Leopard by the Dutch 74 Waakzaamheid down through the "Roaring 40s" and into the gale force winds and freezing cold mountainous seas of the 50 degree latitude south portion of the Great Southern Ocean is some of the most exciting sea-faring historical fiction written. The conclusion of the chase was absolutely riveting and the final horrific ending made the hair on my neck stand up. My appreciation for what sailors must have endured, and still endure, while sailing in the Southern Ocean most definitely went up a couple of notches -- this is no place for the faint of heart.

In conclusion, Desolation Island is another magnificent episode in Patrick O'Brian's brilliant "Aubreyiad."

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message 1: by SarahC (new)

SarahC Christopher, you are on a Patrick O'Brian roll! Continued thanks for the reviews.

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