1793. HMS Amazon is returning from an arduous duty in the Indian Ocean when she encounters a French frigate in the Atlantic.
When Amazon left England nearly two years before the countries were not at war but any hopes that the peace still holds are shattered as the Frenchman unexpectedly opens fire- a bloody sea battle ensues resulting in both triumph and personal tragedy for Acting Lieutenant John Fury. A battered Amazon puts into Gibraltar for repairs and there Fury has his promotion confirmed by Vice Admiral Lord Hood, commander of the Mediterranean Fleet. But with promotion comes a transfer away from his home on the Amazon and a new challenge. He will be the fifth lieutenant on the 74-gun-man of war Fortitude. Tedious blockading duty on the French Fleet in Toulon seems to be in prospect but then in a remarkable development Toulon and the enemy fleet are surrendered to Hood by French Monarchists. A series of unexpected events sees Fury temporarily transferred away from Fortitude, first to a brig, his first independent command, then to a gun ship and finally to defend a prominent fort ashore as the Republican armies, inspired by a young artillery officer by the name of Napoleon Bonaparte, establish a brutal siege of the port. It is soon clear that Britain and her allies are going to be hard pressed to hold onto their prize. But Fury has more to lose than most, in the maelstrom of the siege he has met and fallen in love with a pretty French girl, Sophie Gourrier. Somehow, as the defence crumbles, he must rescue his men and Sophie from the doomed city.
©2007 G. S. Beard (P)2010 Random House Audiobooks
I am an avid eclectic reader.
1793 HMS Amazon arrives in Gibraltar after battle with French and the death of her Captain John Fury's uncle. Amazon was on way home to England after a year in the Indian ocean and was unaware that war had broken out between France and England. Lord Hood promoted Fury to Lieutenant and assigned him the HMS Fortitude on blockade duty off Toulon. G.S. Beard provide great battle scenes of the battle of Toulon both on land and sea. Fury falls for a Count's daughter Sophie Gourrier and he rescues her family which add some more drama to the story. Col. B.. Napoleon commanded artilery at Toulon. Beard did take some literary license to the battle but mostly it was accurate. Lots of action, sailing information and life in the 1790's British Navy makes this a great sea story to read. Terry Wale does a good job narrating the story. I do hope Beard writes more stories and Audible provides them for us.
"Thumbs down for narration"
What appears to be a reasonable second book in a promising series relating to Fury is somewhat thwarted by a dreadful narrator. Terry Wale fundamentally undermines the character with a voice somewhere between Kenneth Williams and Captain Kirk (no slight on either who were fine in their own characters!). Fury sounds like an effete dandy who would find it hard to lead a cocktail party let alone take charge of a bunch of hardened blue jackets. Very well researched book and good storyline but I really hope a third book will have a more fitting narrator.
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