Synopses & Reviews
May 1810, seventeen years deep into the Napoleonic Wars. Captain Horatio Hornblower is newly in command of his first ship of the line, the seventy-four-gun HMS Sutherland, which he deems "the ugliest and least desirable two-decker in the Navy List." Moreover, she is 250 men short of a full crew, so Hornblower must enlist and train "poachers, bigamists, sheepstealers," and other landlubbers. By the time the Sutherland reaches the blockaded Catalonian coast of Spain, the crew is capable of staging five astonishing solo raids against the French. But the grisly prospect of defeat and capture looms for both captain and crew as the Sutherland single-handedly takes on four French ships.
"Before there was Patrick O'Brian, there was C. S. Forester, " said the Wall Street Journal in a recent review that described the eleven-volume series of Horatio Hornblower novels as "spellbinding."
This epic saga of turmoil and triumph on the high seas, which recounts the exploits of one of the most daring and resourceful officers in the Royal Navy as he wrestles with his own "accursed unhappy temperament" and as he sails valiantly into battle after battle against Napoleon's forces, has delighted millions of readers since the series debuted in 1938.