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Publisher's Summary

Exclusively from Audible:

In this, the final Horatio Hornblower adventure, C.S. Forester throws his hero into one of the most challenging missions yet.

Upon discovering highly confidential papers dispatched by Bonaparte, Hornblower sets off to enlighten the Admiralty about his game-changing, new findings. Troubled after having been informed of Pierre-Charles Villeneuve's escape into Spain, they welcome Horatio's news and send him off on a high-priority assignment that they believe will lead to England's victory over Napoleon.

His first and only espionage mission, Hornblower lights the powder trail which will eventually lead to the battle of Trafalgar and with a myriad of unexpected twists and suspenseful turns, Hornblower and the Crisis becomes one of Forester's greatest works.

Hugely celebrated for his Napoleonic naval warfare series, and later for the publication of The African Queen, C. S. Forester came to writing much later than expected. Having originally studied medicine at Guy's Hospital, Forester first developed a love of story-telling after being inspired by his travels with the Royal Navy.

Stricken with arteriosclerosis whilst voyaging to the Bering Sea, C.S. Forester was crippled in his later life. Sadly, he passed away before completing this final instalment, but his plans for Hornblower and he Crisis were clearly set out within his detailed notes. These can be found at the end of the audiobook and serve to offer further insight into the mind of this incredible author.

Narrator Biography

Christian Rodska is an English television and voice actor best known for his role in the 1970's series Follyfoot.

From the The Monuments Men and The Eagle of the Ninth to The Likely Lads, Z Cars, The Tomorrow People, Coronation Street, Bergerac and Casualty, his extensive and diverse acting career has led him to become a highly solicited radio and audiobook narrator.

He has now voiced over 150 unabridged audiobooks including Winston Churchill's biographies, Evelyn Waugh's Men at Arms and Sebastian Faulks' A Possible Life. He has been praised for his ability to vary in vocal pace and style and as such, Christian boasts 12 Earphone Awards from Audiofile Magazine.

©1967 C.S. Forester (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Not a complete Book

Any additional comments?

Come to find out, this was the last book written in the series, even though it is number 4 in sequence of action. The author died while writing it. I had a great story line, and was interesting until its very abrupt end in the middle of the plot. Frustrating.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Adds little to the Hornblower saga

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

As I am re-reading (listening) to the Hornblower saga and this title came up, I gave it a try. I'd never seen the title before. This vignette was assembled after Forester's death from his notes and I thought added little or nothing to the saga.

If you’ve listened to books by C. S. Forester before, how does this one compare?

Poorly.

Have you listened to any of Christian Rodska’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Very well. He is a good reader.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Probably not. The translation of Forester to the screen (big and small) has never been done to my satisfaction. The BBC effort was enjoyable, but the screen writers took far to many liberties with Forester's work for my taste. I have been a Forester fan for many decades. There was no need to alter his plots. As for the Gregory Peck B&W, it was horrible.

Any additional comments?

Keep up the good work, Audible. I really enjoy the audio books.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 07-09-13

Forester's last book

C. S. Forester died while writing this book. The book comes to a sudden end but there is an author note of his outline of the end of the book. There is two short stories at end of book one of a young Lt Hornblower, the other as an Admiral. Unlike other publisher this one chose not too hire a ghost writer to finish the book, we the reader can use our imaginations. I have been going through the series and am sad to see it end. Forester was a good writer and I love sea stores of the late 1790 early 1800s. This book takes place in 1805 with Napoleon planning to invade England, Hornblower, of course, will try to stop this. Christian Rodska has done a great job with the narration of the series.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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unfinished upon death

Is there anything you would change about this book?

the reader should be on a stage, as his vocal acting is a bit over the top which at times, especially in his thick and surely authentic english sailor accent, require a rewind. the stories (yes there are 2) are good but the first one (4th in chronological order) is unfinished and is summed up with Mr Forester's notes, the second story catapults you towards the final days of Hornblower and reveals his later life leaving a massive gap in the overall plot.

Would you recommend Hornblower and the Crisis to your friends? Why or why not?

yes, with the above warning

Did Christian Rodska do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

too good

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Andrea
  • Wetaskiwin, Alberta, Canada
  • 08-16-13

Exciting, but over priced.

Christian Rodska beautifully narrates another Hornblower, but as the story is incomplete (due to Forester's death) and only running about three hours long, $11.50 feels a bit over priced. Adding a short story about Hornblower as a signal Lieutenant on the Renown hardly takes away the sting. Worth it for a die hard Hornblower fan.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Paul
  • Quakers Hill, Australia
  • 06-12-13

Fast paced, Excellent story and very well read

The Reader- Christian Rodska is the star of this book. Very well read with great pace and excitement. This is probably a favourite so far (reading in chronological order of Hornblowers career). Very believable story with neat twists that tie this story to the real history of the day. Forester does a fantastic job of keeping this work of fiction in tune with historic events. So much so it is easy to believe (almost understand) how the fictional Hornblower influenced the histroy of the RN and the battle of Trafalger.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Hornblower short stories

This was the last Hornblower story written by Forrester before he died, so it is incomplete. 3 additional short stories are included.

  • Overall

cute bit of story telling

not his best work but i enjoyed the telling.

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Could have been better finished

I was extremely disappointed by the ending of the story. Even though C.S. Forester passed before he could finish the work himself there were notes that could have allowed it to be done in his style. A poor
purchase.

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not finished

Unfortunately the author died while writing this book. they steamroll through his outline and add some meaningless short story to the end. I enjoyed it very much up to the reading of the outline though. If you enjoy the previous books in the series this is still worth the time.

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  • Thomas
  • 01-23-15

Shame it will remain unfinished!

A couple of very good beginnings here - and well worth a listen if you have a voucher or free credit to spare - otherwise stick to the completed hornblower books and listen to this one at the end - the last 30 minutes or so tie things off

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Matsumoto
  • 05-23-15

Thoroughly enjoyable

A good title, from the Hornblower series. This volume follows on well from Lieutenant Hornblower. Well delivered again, by Christian Rodska.