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Publisher's Summary

It's 1794. Stuck in Palermo harbour, the headstrong Lieutenant John Pearce and his trusty Pelicans must repair the battle-damaged HMS Larcher with only meagre funds to do so. Sailing into danger, they encounter enemies. Pearce has no option but to run until, trapped in an Italian bay, he is forced to abandon his ship. Pearce must face a court-martial for his actions, but his troubles are only just beginning.

A deadly plan is contrived to send the unwitting Pelicans into mortal danger against a bloodthirsty, piratical Turk called Mehmet Pasha: The aim is to force them into a disastrous fight they cannot win. Only luck and Pearce’s fiery thirst for battle can save them now....

©2014 David Donachie (P)2015 Soundings

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 08-17-15

A fun sea tale

This is another book in the John Pearce series. As with the prior books in the series, Donachie spends half the book repeating information from the prior books in the series. The Story seems to be stuck.

John Pearce’s ship is in need of repair. Captain Ralph Barclay thinks Emily is still with Pearce and has sailed for the Mediterranean to rescue her. Meanwhile Pearce is fighting to save himself and his crew from capture by the Pasha and to be free of the enemy and get their prize ships to port.

Donachie needs to end this series; it has played itself out. Donachie can write a good sea tale but I think I am bailing out of this series now.

Peter Wickham does a good job narrating the series.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

This Series is Stalled

Would you try another book from David Donachie and/or Peter Wickham?

Probably not in the John Pearce series.

What could David Donachie have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Donachie needs to bring this story to climax. He spends half the book retelling the previous books in the story, then doesn't go anywhere with the tale. This book, especially, didn't actually accomplish anything substantial to the story.

What about Peter Wickham’s performance did you like?

Wickham is a good actor, and does voices very convincingly.

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

I'm angry that the book don't go anywhere, and didn't advance the story line.

Any additional comments?

I won't read another book in this series unless it is headlined as the final novel. The author has milked these characters dry.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Lance
  • Lance
  • 06-15-15

What comes next

What did you like most about The Devil to Pay?

I like the way a lower rank can sometimes out do their seniors

What did you like best about this story?

Life at sea, which must have been pretty tough for the ratings.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

No particular scene, I had trouble turning the book off, like I do with the other titles in the series.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

A fight for love and revenge

Any additional comments?

When is the next book arriving, or is it already out? It should be book 12 or maybe another title.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Dave W
  • Dave W
  • 06-08-15

Was it worth waiting for?

About time it was released in Audio format. Well worth the wait. A bit slow to start but picked up quickly and full of intricate plots and double plots. John Pearce survives another day.