Beats TV by a mile. What excitement, sailng without motors for years at a time. Of course there is that problem of ships appearing over the horizon and trying to sink you.
Only books I could compare it to would be the rest of the Hornblower series
Too many favorites to decide
Avid audible listener for over 10 years.
I am a big fan of this genre, C.S Forester is perhaps the best known, but there are also the Dewey Lambdin series which is also good, Peter Simple, and the Master and Commander Series from Patrick O'Brien. I would rate C.S Forester as among the better, but slightly more serious than the others. For more fun and spice I like Dewey Lambdin. The Bloody Jack Series is also fun although it is aimed at teenagers. This is book 1 (can't purchase book #2), and book # 3 is next one in series on Audible. So if you start listening, you will soon have to transition over to written word because there is limited audio format availability.
An absolute gem. I loved the story and was excited about continuing with the Hornblower series only to discover that not all have been narrated. Ouch. However, this should not diminish the wonderful story of young Midshipman Hornblower as he is introduced to His Majesty's Naval Service. He transitions from a young and fumbling 17 year old midshipman to a very capable and seasoned naval officer in a very short time.
The story transitions from one major event to another to include his capture by the Spaniards and incarcerated for several years. Young Hornblower exhibits compassion, the highest ethical standards, bravery, intelligence, and maturity well beyond his years. It is a wonderful story that is appropriate for all ages. Most highly recommended.
This book is narrated in truly top form. Fascinating story well worth the read.
Loved how Hornblower usually got his way by skill and brain power instead of
The writer and narrator transport you to another time and place. The story is so well written that you can visualize every detail. The narrator helps the book come alive without getting in the way of the story. It was an exciting book and one that I will likely listen to again.
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (historical fiction) - I loved the movie Master and Commander and I love sailing on a nearby lake, so I thought I might like this book. It is Book 1 and introduces the main character of the series, 16-year-old Horatio Hornblower, who boards a British ship for the first time. As he begins to learn what it takes to be a seaman, he and his fellow crewmen face all kinds of challenges -- sinking ships, encounters with various enemies at sea, a battle with the French on land, saving a ship wrecked on a reef, etc. It's well-written and never boring. There are lots of nautical terms which some listeners might enjoy, but it may make it difficult for others to envision what's actually happening. Terms like fore, aft, leeward, poop (deck) and many others are common throughout the story.
The series apparently will chronicle Hornblower's promising career as an English naval officer. This book ends at a satisfactory stopping point but is definitely not an end to the adventure.
PERFORMANCE - Narrator does very convincing English, Spanish and French accents as well as some great salty old sailors. Perfect choice.
OVERALL- If you're interested in this period of history and life on the high seas, you will probably love this series. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. IMHO, this is a "guy book," although I see other women reviewers have thoroughly enjoyed it.
Say something about yourself!
It's been 30 yrs since I read these and Hornblower is as captivating as ever - simply great adventure stories. Rodska does an admirable job reading this and does a good job with the various characters. Looking forward to the next books in the series
I read like a madwoman all my life but now I have bad eyes. Thank goodness for audio books
Something is wrong with this recording it does not have an ending. I wish I had a better copy
This one needs a better recording
Live on edge of National Forest with lake, birds & wild animals. No more perfect place to indulge life-long love of reading.
The only real story arc for this book is the discovery of self and courage by a young man just coming of age. This is portrayed over a series of vignettes that could easily be standalone short stories. Forester is a master at writing action scenes. He portrays characters with words as if they were short, powerful brush strokes.
Forester did not write the Hornblower books in actual chronological order. I suspect that, at some point, he wanted to go back and give his readers a sense of the younger Hornblower and how he came to be the man he is in the later books. Therefore, this is more a filling in of blanks than an independent novel.
The narration is wonderful: the different voices, accents, and full range of emotions are consistently excellent.
From my perspective, the primary reason to listen to this book is if you are investing your time (and credits) in this whole series. I'm definitely moving on to book 2 in the series.
I do not sail. I get seasick looking at pictures of boats on the ocean. And I LOVE the Hornblower series. This is a story of daring, ambition, intelligence, discipline, risk.taking and luck! A co-worker reminded me that Horatio Hornblower was the inspiration for Captain Kirk of Star Trek, and it is an apt comparison!
If you have never read any of the series, this is the perfect book to start with.
The unfamilar nautical terms make sense in the context they are used. Your time and place in history come alive through the narrative. The reader is excellent. Before you know it, the book is over, and you are purchasing and downloading the next one....luckily there are many in the series, so you have many happy hours before you must say goodbye to Horatio Hornblower.