Julie R. reviewed The Commodore (Aubrey & Maturin, Bk 17) on
This series just never gets old, boring or repetitive to me. I have enjoyed this one (the 17th) as much as any of the earlier ones and look forward to getting my hands on the next.
O'Brian's books are among the ones I'm seriously considering keeping on the shelf forever. Too bad for PaperBackSwap members if I do!
The writing is terrific, often humorous, the characters engaging and the history carefully researched and meticulously recreated without feeling the least like a history lesson.
I love this series, but some of these books are too short individually, each book is like a chapter in a magnum opus. The right way to read the books is in order, I know this because I read one out of order and it screws up the magic. In this book, there is an event that happened in the book called Truelove/Clarissa Oakes, and it's referenced here. It's funny if you catch the reference, probably not so funnily if you didn't know what happened two books back.
As the series goes on it's more and more about Mauturin, which is good, as he is an awesome character.
As Jack graduates to the role of Commodore (sort of like a one star admiral, but not really, because this is the 1800's) he leads a fleet to fight slavers off Africa, and then has a secret mission... Mauturin outed a major spy, with no proof, and the spy is retaliating with legal actions that threaten Mauturin with forfeiture. Both Jack and Mauturin now have money (compared to the early books) so they can certainly do things, that were not possible before. Jack loans Mauturin his private schooner...
Triggers: It's a war book at it's core, and sort of a medical book, so there is always violence, death, and sailors always are catching VD, that Mauturin treats with mercury. This book has a lot of marital discord as well. There is discussion about homosexuality, as one of the captains under Aubrey is alleged to be one.
I like this series a lot. I admit that I like the Bolitho novels more (written by Douglas Reeman (using the pseudonym Alexander Kent), but that is like saying you like your eggs scrambled rather than poached. Both series are excellent, and you should read both of them.