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Desolation Island (1978)

de Patrick O'Brian

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Sèrie: Aubrey-Maturin (5)

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2,952433,457 (4.18)58
Commissioned to rescue Governor Bligh of Bounty fame, Captain Jack Aubrey and his friend, surgeon Stephen Maturin, sail the Leopard to Australia with a hold full of convicts. Among them is a beautiful and dangerous spy--and a treacherous disease that decimates the crew. With a Dutch man-of-war to windward, the undermanned, outgunned Leopard sails for her life into the freezing waters of the Antarctic, where, in mountainous seas, the Dutchman closes in.… (més)
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Anglès (40)  Castellà (2)  Suec (1)  Totes les llengües (43)
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Okay so I have always wanted to read some of the Jack Aubrey/ Steven Maturin novels since Master and Commander came out because it is one of my favourite movies of all time. I chose this one rather than the ones used in the movies because it told the tale of Jack and Steven taking convicts to Australia and I thought the "Desolation Island" rereferred to in the title was Australia. It isn't, its an island in the middle of nowhere that the ship they are on, the Leopard ( a converted brig) finds itself anchored on after a conflict with a much more powerful Dutch ship. As a back story, Steven is sent on board to see if the convict Mrs Wogan is perhaps an American spy as Britain is on the edge of war with America. There is a stowaway who is in love with Mrs Wogan, who becomes Steven's assistant surgeon on board, a lot of illness, a race away from the Dutch ship chasing them, whalers, a surly know it all first mate instead of the ill Mr Pullings, and South American foreign ports in this very entertaining adventure.
I will say however, that I should have read this as an e-book as there was so much of the nautical and medical terminology that completely alluded me. If I had read it as an e-book I could have hit the "Look Up" feature on any word, as it was, I had to stop reading and google some of the words to find out what they meant. Kudos to the author Patrick O'Brian for, even though the book was written in 1978, it reads like a classic written at the time when it was set. ( I had just read Swiss Family Robinson and a lot of the prose was very similar!)
Interesting how Jack's joke about Weevils is actually from this book, not far Side of the World or Master and Commander, so obviously the screenwriters had read more than just these two novels of the series. Will I read anymore? Yes, possibly but only on e-book as lookig up words kept distracting me from the action in the plot. (What are Spankers and Mizzens anyway?) ( )
  nicsreads | Oct 6, 2020 |
I haven't got time to properly read this lovely book again, but I love the close descriptions, the period phrases thrown in just often enough (like "cutting his coat according to his cloth"), and the close Third Person narrated internal monologue that keeps enough vivid action imagery to hold interest for several surprising pages.

Well worth a first or second read.
7 Feb, 12019 HE
Shira ( )
  FourFreedoms | May 17, 2019 |
Buena, creo que hasta ahora la mejor de la serie, deben llevar a unos presos a Bay of Plenty y en el medio transcurren aventuras varias, los persigue un barco holandés, casi naufragan ( )
  gneoflavio | Apr 25, 2019 |
I haven't got time to properly read this lovely book again, but I love the close descriptions, the period phrases thrown in just often enough (like "cutting his coat according to his cloth"), and the close Third Person narrated internal monologue that keeps enough vivid action imagery to hold interest for several surprising pages.

Well worth a first or second read.
7 Feb, 12019 HE
Shira ( )
  ShiraDest | Mar 6, 2019 |
Desolation Island, Patrick O'Brian's fifth book in his Aubrey-Maturin series, once again see Captain Jack Aubrey and Dr. Stephen Maturin take to the seas on one of His Majesty's ships during the Napoleonic Wars. Unlike previous novels, Aubrey's mission in this story is not explicitly for war, but rather to ferry prisoners to Botany Bay and there discover the fate of Captain Bligh (of HMS Bounty infamy) who was deposed as Governor of New South Wales following the Rum Rebellion. The early mention of Bligh and occasional references to him serve as a form of foreshadowing. The British government suspects one of the prisoners, a companion of Maturin's would-be lover Diana Villiers, of being a spy for the United States. Maturin must work to discover what information she has and how she both gathers and passes it along.
The majority of the novel focuses on Maturin's study of the woman and an American stowaway. The possibility of war with America looms ever-present in this novel (pgs. 42, 113, 264) with talk of the British policy of impressment and the unhappy coincidence that Aubrey captains the HMS Leopard, which fired upon and boarded the USS Chesapeake in 1807. This action was emblematic of worsening tensions between Great Britain and the United States prior to the War of 1812. Simultaneously, Aubrey finds one of his officers doubting his ability to command and, when injured in an action against a Dutch ship, those complaints intensify (pg. 210). Damage from an iceberg in the Southern Ocean leads the mutineers to abandon the floundering ship, leaving Aubrey and some of his more loyal sailors behind. From there, the action shifts to Desolation Island. There, further encounters with Americans foreshadow the United States' eventual entry into the war.
O'Brian's writing is its usual pleasure, firmly grounding readers in the world of life at sea during the Napoleonic Wars. That said, this novel reads more like a prologue for the eventual introduction of the United States as a belligerent to the war. Still, O'Brian handles the intrigue well and there's some good action for those looking for it. ( )
1 vota DarthDeverell | Jun 8, 2018 |
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» Afegeix-hi altres autors (12 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Patrick O'Brianautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Brown, RichardNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Griffin, GordonNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Hunt, GeoffAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jendis, MatthiasTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jerrom, RicNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Kučerová, SimonaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Merla, PaolaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Nikupaavola, RenneTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Tull, PatrickNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Vance, SimonNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Wiberg, CarlaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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The breakfast-parlour was the most cheerful room in Ashgrove Cottage, and although the builders had ruined the garden with heaps of sand and unslaked lime and bricks, and although the damp walls of the new wing in which this parlour stood still smelt of plaster, the sun poured in, blazing on the covered silver dishes and lighting the face of Sophie Aubrey as she sat there waiting for her husband.
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'Before you judge a commander,' he said, on his seven-hundredth turn, 'you must know just what he had to command.' [191: Aubrey]
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Commissioned to rescue Governor Bligh of Bounty fame, Captain Jack Aubrey and his friend, surgeon Stephen Maturin, sail the Leopard to Australia with a hold full of convicts. Among them is a beautiful and dangerous spy--and a treacherous disease that decimates the crew. With a Dutch man-of-war to windward, the undermanned, outgunned Leopard sails for her life into the freezing waters of the Antarctic, where, in mountainous seas, the Dutchman closes in.

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Mitjana: (4.18)
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2 10
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3 78
3.5 25
4 237
4.5 33
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W.W. Norton

W.W. Norton ha publicat 2 edicions d'aquest llibre.

Edicions: 039330812X, 0393037053

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