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Side Reads Master & Commander > Discuss Chapters 7-9, with SPOILERS

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Part 3 of our discussion.


message 2: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) And so the excitement and intrigue continues! After the ninth chapter, the novel is 3/4 of the way through, so I have a good feel for the novel. I will go ahead and share an aspect of the book I am enjoying and something that I wish was different.

I really enjoy the mischievous plotting and actions that the crew of the Sophie take to disguise their ship and fool other crews. The paint, the fake masts, donning the uniform of another country, using another language; it is all such fun to read about. And that Aubrey, Dillon, and the rest of the crew think nothing of the deceptions, but instead relish the opportunity as a fair way to gain the upper hand. Maturin is shocked that men who adhere to such a strict Naval code would intentionally defraud fellow sailors; but the officers assure Maturin that it is a customary ploy among seamen. My favorite scheme is when Aubrey places lanterns on a raft and sets it afloat to fool a a ship in pursuit of the Sophie at night. So clever!

However, I do wish there was less minute descriptions of sails, ropes, and skirmishes, and more details on the lives and back-stories of the main characters. At this point in the book, I expected to have read about several interactions of and an explanation of the relationship between Aubrey and and Mrs. Harte and more details on Maturin's personal life. I am dying to know if Aubrey is really in love with Mrs. Harte, how long he has known her, what is the extent of their relationship, etc. And to whom did Maturin go when he requested to be dropped off and followed some overgrown path to his destination? I really do want those juicy details, and it is very unsatisfying not having access to them.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Joy wrote: "And so the excitement and intrigue continues! After the ninth chapter, the novel is 3/4 of the way through, so I have a good feel for the novel. I will go ahead and share an aspect of the book I am..."

Joy, your observations are spot-on! The sailors take delight in acting like a chameleon and fooling their 'prey.' That is the way. They want to be able to get up close and snooker the enemy.

Regarding Jack's tete a tete (well, let's call it what it is, an adulterous affair) with Molly Harte; well, that is going to haunt him for some years to come. Jack is a Commander (and not even a Post Captain yet), and Harte is an Admiral. Well, you can imagine where that is going to get him.

In the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't spend time reviewing and discussing it here, I do hope that all of you will at least read Post Captain; I know that you'll love it even more than Master and Commander.


message 4: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) Christopher wrote: "n the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't spend time reviewing and discussing it here, I do hope that all of you will at least read Post Captain; I know that you'll love it even more than Master and Commander."

Oh great, now you have me sucked into a 20-book series?? I don't have time for this, I have too many TBR books as it is. Son of a ... Stupid O'Brian and his interesting storyline!! *shaking fist in air*


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Joy wrote: "Christopher wrote: "n the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't spend time reviewing and discuss..."

Yup! That is in fact what it is all about... Okay, you can deal with this, Joy. Read something else; come back and read an O'Brian or two...Then read something else, and then come back and read another O'Brian or two. Or, you can do as I did; read the entire series, one after the other; and then sit back and marvel; and realize that you've read some of the finest historical fiction written in the English language.


message 6: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) Christopher wrote: "Joy wrote: "Christopher wrote: "n the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't spend time reviewing..."

I know I will have to at least read one more right after this one, and am excited to see what happens! I feel like an addict: "Just one more..."


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Joy wrote: "Christopher wrote: "Joy wrote: "Christopher wrote: "n the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't ..."

I gotta warn you...that is precisely what happened to me...One led to another...to another...to another...to another...


message 8: by Megan (new)

Megan Joy wrote: "Christopher wrote: "n the next episode, Post Captain, we get to see Jack and Stephen spend significant time with the new lady loves of their lives. Even if we don't spend time reviewing and discuss..."

Too late for me - I already downloaded the next one from Audible...like I need another 20 books series also!


message 9: by Alicia (new)

Alicia I do hope that all of you will at least read Post Captain...

I'm willing to read it if we're going to continue our discussion.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Alicia wrote: "I do hope that all of you will at least read Post Captain...

I'm willing to read it if we're going to continue our discussion."


You can certainly count on my participation, Alicia. I am so pleased to have been able to share some of my enthusiasm for this wonderful series.


message 11: by SarahC, Austen Votary & Mods' Asst. (new)

SarahC (sarahcarmack) | 1473 comments Mod
I think we can continue ahead discussing at least Post Captain here on Jane Austen group. Timeframe is up to everyone else. I believe is available at the local lib, so I am set. Does everyone want a continuous flow into book two? I still haven't finished book one, but am close and expect to have more comments to add here.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Sarah wrote: "I think we can continue ahead discussing at least Post Captain here on Jane Austen group. Timeframe is up to everyone else. I believe is available at the local lib, so I am set. Does everyone wa..."

I am at your service, my friends; just let me know your pleasure. I think all of you will love Post Captain even more!


message 13: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) I am definitely up to reading Post Captain. I do need to read a few books before I read it though, but a July 1st start date would be good for me.


message 14: by Alicia (new)

Alicia I vote to start it on July 1, since I'm just starting on Chapter 7 of Master and Commander today.


message 15: by Megan (new)

Megan Alicia wrote: "I vote to start it on July 1, since I'm just starting on Chapter 7 of Master and Commander today."

I'm in. Sounds good.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) I'm in too, and July 1st is fine. I will be in Virgina on vacation, but will have access to a computer.


message 17: by SarahC, Austen Votary & Mods' Asst. (new)

SarahC (sarahcarmack) | 1473 comments Mod
I really feel that I am drawn into the life of these characters now. Definitely good writing -- I have been telling everyone about it!

Just some of things that hold me there --

Stephen's diary entry -- "I am afraid that JA and JD will kill each other -- JD is full of contained rage" --No Spoilers --- but this part really throws you on the wrong trail (as I am actually in Ch 11 now.)

Jack and Stephen playing their violins on deck. Shouldn't we all learn to play the violin if this keeps these men civil? Something to think about.

Jack creating the ruse of the raft with the lanterns on it.

Stephen telling Jack how the peasants had hollered these insults across the valley fully within hearing of Stephen and James, not realizing Stephen spoke their language. "Wherever the English walk, the ewes miscarry." (!!!)

James saying of Jack "he derives a greater pleasure from a smaller stream of wit than any man I have ever known." That seems a moment of acceptance of some kind by James of Jack.


message 18: by [deleted user] (new)

My husband used this last line to describe me during our Norway trip! I don't think it can really be taken completely as a compliment. But having enjoyment in the little things certainly makes life more enjoyable.


message 19: by SarahC, Austen Votary & Mods' Asst. (new)

SarahC (sarahcarmack) | 1473 comments Mod
That is funny, Jeannette. Yes, coming from Dillon, I could just see him shaking his head at the Captain about this, but not totally disgusted maybe. A lot of times, it is when we get our own private jokes pretty often that might make someone use a comment like that about us!


message 20: by [deleted user] (new)

I think Jack just found little things funny, a bit out of proportion to how Dillon saw it. So, Dillon begrudgingly acknowledges this ability in Jack to enjoy even the smallest things.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Jeannette wrote: "I think Jack just found little things funny, a bit out of proportion to how Dillon saw it. So, Dillon begrudgingly acknowledges this ability in Jack to enjoy even the smallest things."

Yes, Jack tended to 'crack himself up' more than those around him. A big, bluff, hearty and hale man, who certainly enjoys life at all levels! Dillon, and Stephen, tend to be more intellectually oriented, maybe a tad reclusive and moody, and both have an acerbic wit. It seems as those two types of personalities balance pretty well. I think we can all think of friends we have like these two.

I tend to be more of Jack's ilk and temperament.


message 22: by [deleted user] (new)

I finished the book and really enjoyed the court martial scene. I liked Maturin's sarcastic take on the whole thing.

I was a bit confused by whose ships were refitted on Gibraltar. There were so many names and captains that I wasn't sure if the English and the French were both waiting repair (together under a truce) or not. I don't like taking notes when I read, so I didn't. :)


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) Jeannette wrote: "I finished the book and really enjoyed the court martial scene. I liked Maturin's sarcastic take on the whole thing.

I was a bit confused by whose ships were refitted on Gibraltar. There were so..."


Oh no, those were all Royal Navy vessels being worked on in Gibraltar. Any French naval vessels there would have been captured prizes.

As a side-note, the Royal Navy port at Port Mahon (on Minorca), featured so prominently in Master and Commander, was restored to Spain by Britain after the Peace of Amiens in 1802 (much to the chagrin of the Royal Navy).


message 24: by [deleted user] (new)

So, explain to me what happened there. Jack and crew were on the Desaix when they were fired upon by the British. Things took a turn for the worse, and then Captain Ferris on the Hannibal had to surrender. They were all taken ashore by the French (I think). And then a great many ships were being repaired, but it was too many names to keep straight. Where did the damaged French vessels go? Whose side were the Spanish on? Who was in control at Gibraltar? Why did the French relinquish the British vessels? Or was it more of a draw?


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) The French captured Jack and his crew. They were then paroled back to the English, and delivered to Gibraltar. The damaged French vessels and the H.M.S. Hannibal, captured by the French were in a nearby French or Spanish port undergoing repairs.

The English controlled Gibraltar during the Napoleonic wars (and still do today). Prior to 1802, the Spanish were allied with the French; after the Peace of Amiens, the Spanish were allied with Britain and much of the rest of Europe against Napoleon. That is why the island of Minorca, and the port facility at Port Mahon were returned to Spain.


message 26: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks, Chris. So, the French took the Hannibal and the Sophie, but everyone else just limped away (French and British)? Since there were so many ships under repair, it seemed like a draw to me. I find scenes like this one a bit confusing, even more than the battle and/or sailing scenes. Just a few too many names to keep straight.


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