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The Surgeon's Mate: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 7 | [Patrick O'Brian]

The Surgeon's Mate: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 7

Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin are ordered home by dispatch vessel to bring the news of their latest victory to the government. But Maturin is a marked man for the havoc he has wrought in the French intelligence network in the New World, and the attention of two privateers soon becomes menacing. The chase that follows through the fogs and shallows of the Grand Banks is tense, and unexpected in its culmination. Meanwhile in Paris, Diana Villiers anxiously awaits Maturin's safe return.
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Publisher's Summary

Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin are ordered home by dispatch vessel to bring the news of their latest victory to the government. But Maturin is a marked man for the havoc he has wrought in the French intelligence network in the New World, and the attention of two privateers soon becomes menacing. The chase that follows through the fogs and shallows of the Grand Banks is tense, and unexpected in its culmination. Meanwhile in Paris, Diana Villiers anxiously awaits Maturin's safe return.

Don't miss the rest of the Aubrey/Maturin series.

©1981 Patrick O'Brian; (P)2005 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"Vividly detailed 19th-century settings and dramatic tension punctuated with flashes of wry humor make O'Brian's nautical adventure a splendid treat." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (236 )
5 star
 (143)
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2 star
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Overall
4.6 (108 )
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Story
4.7 (113 )
5 star
 (87)
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3 star
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Performance
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  •  
    03-18-10
    03-18-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    50
    ratings
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    23
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Great Book Good Narrator"

    I find it very unfair that some of the previous reviews gave this book a bad score because of their preference to another narrator. Simon Vance is a very good narrator as he has been for the previous books in the series.

    Though it seems like most people prefer the other narrator, I myself prefer Vance because he makes Jack sound like the gruff and boisterous character that he is. This does not mean that I will give the other version on Audible a bad score. Let's give credit where credit is due. Simon Vance may not be the best of the two according to most listeners but he is very good in his own right.

    The book itself is amazingly written with deep and complex characters. In fact all the books in the series that I've listened to so far have a level of quality that is unmatched.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael NottinghamUnited Kingdom 04-30-07
    Michael NottinghamUnited Kingdom 04-30-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    0
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    Overall
    "Marvellous narration"

    A great book for a long drive and Simon Vance's narration made the book perfect.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Austin, TX, United States 02-28-07
    Robert Austin, TX, United States 02-28-07 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    2
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    1
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    Overall
    "Not Tull"

    The narrator of this volume is competent, but is not Patrick Tull, whose narrations make this series.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Canberra, Australia 09-12-12
    Michael Canberra, Australia 09-12-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    69
    12
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    FOLLOWING
    2
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    Story
    "Another excellent Aubrey/Maturin tale"

    Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin books never fail to amuse and excite the reader. Vance's narration is excellent, though I don't think he has as good a feel for the characters as Ric Jerrom.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Livingston, TX, USA 06-10-10
    Stephen Livingston, TX, USA 06-10-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    2
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "The Surgeon's Mate"

    Contrary to some other reviews, I think Simon Vance did a superb job as a reader. I was hooked from the first paragraph.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ridgely H Duvall Cambridge, MA USA 03-12-11
    Ridgely H Duvall Cambridge, MA USA 03-12-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    1
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Simon Vance vs. Patrick Tull"

    I accidentally downloaded the Vance version of this novel. I had been accustomed to Tull's narration, but even despite that familiarity I was shocked by Vance's reading, which seemed too fast and with characters insufficiently delineated. I strongly prefer Patrick Tull in the Aubrey/Maturin series...

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heather Vancouver, BC, Canada 03-15-14
    Heather Vancouver, BC, Canada 03-15-14 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great narration"
    If you could sum up The Surgeon's Mate in three words, what would they be?

    Diplomacy, intrigue, action


    What other book might you compare The Surgeon's Mate to and why?

    The 7th in the Aubrey Maturin series it has plenty of action on the sea and land alike. The book contains a little bit of The Great Escape as each hero manages to wriggle out of a variety of scrapes; a bit of any spy novel is thrown in; as always the Napoleonic era touches on the best of Jane Austen's and other 19c works; and somehow I am always reminded vaguely of Star Trek as I listen to the urgent commands during battle and learn the rules of diplomacy, honour, and tolerance, especially among a band of brothers living and working 24/7 in close quarters.


    What does Simon Vance bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The proper pronunciation of the seafaring lexicon is a bonus, and though I have listened to a couple of others read some books of the series I like to be consistent. Vance has a fairly good handle on most of the accents, and of the main characters his Aubrey, Maturin, and Killick are so particularly distinct they almost define the characters.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The ending was a joy and a relief, and a better captain could not have been chosen for the duty.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gregory EUDLO, Australia 12-07-13
    Gregory EUDLO, Australia 12-07-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "this will not down load"
    What disappointed you about The Surgeon's Mate?

    It will not down load


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    I would like to hear this one work


    How could the performance have been better?

    the 3g down load will work????


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment with the fact it was not downloaded


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nick Bozeman, MT 04-15-08
    Nick Bozeman, MT 04-15-08 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    32
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Wrong Narrator"

    After the first chapter I deleted the book and bought the patrick tull version. Don't buy this one, get the Patrick Tull version.

    4 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leslie Woodland Hills, CA, United States 06-18-07
    Leslie Woodland Hills, CA, United States 06-18-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "The Surgeon's Mate"

    I loved this series up to now. Simon Vance is without a doubt the worst reader I've heard. After an hour I deleted the book.

    3 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 10 results
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  • William
    Hungerford, United Kingdom
    6/19/12
    Overall
    "Unabridged, and all the better for it"

    I am sad that the first reviewer of this book was so disappointed, but I hope that as more books become available he will read them and become as involved and dedicated as all of O'Brian's many fans. Read out of sequence it may loose something, however I am delighted to see that "Post Captain", the second in the series is now available.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Peter
    Billingham, United Kingdom
    1/11/12
    Overall
    "Accomplished but tedious"

    Having been disappointed by the poor abridgement of Book 1 in the series, I purchased the only unabridged volume available on Audible. I was looking for a rollicking adventure on the high seas with the dastardly French being thrashed by the British seadogs due to the fabled superiority of their seamanship and Cap'n Aubrey's skill and cunning. How disappointed I was!
    O'Brian is, without a shadow of a doubt, a great expert on this period of history - not least when it comes to the technical details of sailing a fighting ship. Unfortunately, he buries the reader/listener with a deluge of unfamiliar terms such that one is hardly the wiser for the description. His knowledge clearly extends to the personalities of London and Paris whose names are liberally dropped to display this knowledge without significantly moving the plot forward. Similarly we are treated to a tedious account of the finest and not-so-fine food of the period with frequent accounts of the effect on our heroes bowels. Yes: too much information all round.
    Whilst one may admire the author's erudition, the pedantic and tediously prolix prose detracts from the enjoyment of the plot.
    The story revolves around Maturin rather than Aubrey as implied by the title but I remain disappointed that there was so little sea action, some of which I missed as I had fallen asleep.
    I fear I have discovered the reason for the profusion of abridged versions of these yarns.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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