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Old 03-28-2013, 10:04 AM   #1
Mike L
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Hornblower stories

I've recently re-discovered the Horatio Hornblower books by C. S. Forester, after a gap of many years. They are much more exciting than I remember. And also more enjoyable given that I now know more of the historical background.

If you are looking for historical naval novels set against the Napoleonic Wars, I can recommend these books. Start with Mr. Midshipman Hornblower. Although it wasn't the first to be written, it is the first in chronological order - the one that introduces the character.

The only problem I have is the baffling nautical terminology. I just have to ignore that.

Mike
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:02 AM   #2
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Yes, they are wonderful stories. For those us in the UK, they're usefully collected in 3 omnibus editions: "The Young Hornblower", "Captain Hownblower, R.N." and "Admiral Hornblower", plus one book left over at the end of the series ("Hornblower and the Crisis").
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:58 PM   #3
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Can also recommend Patrick O'Brian
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:24 PM   #4
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And The Richard Bolitho Series by Alexander Kent. I enjoyed all three.
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cassidym View Post
Can also recommend Patrick O'Brian
Yeah.. I came to the Hornblower novels because of O'Brian. Quite a bit more technically detailed than the Hornblower novels, but the two I've read have been enjoyable.
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:13 AM   #6
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I have yet to read any of these, but have heard about the character ever since I was a teenager.

Should they be read in order?

or:

which one should I read first?

Thanks.



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Old 03-29-2013, 09:27 AM   #7
Mike L
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Drib View Post
Should they be read in order?
...
which one should I read first?
Yes, they should be read in chronological order, because, as a series they follow Hornblower through his career, from a 17-year old midshipman to a knighted admiral and baron.

However, the first one in the chronology - Mr Midshipman Hornblower - was not the first one that Forester wrote. Start with that one because it's the one that introduces us to the character.

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Old 03-29-2013, 10:36 AM   #8
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Thanks, Mike.

That will be the one I'll start with.




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Old 03-29-2013, 02:56 PM   #9
Mike L
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For a list of all the titles in chronological order:

http://www.librarything.com/series/H...ological+Order

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Old 03-29-2013, 04:10 PM   #10
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I recently re-read these as well, and can very much recommend them. In some ways, they're not as good, IMO, as the O'Brian Aubrey/Maturin books, but they are still excellent. (The Alexander Kent Bolitho books are good, but I'd put them a step down from the Hornblower or O'Brian books.)
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:59 PM   #11
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Hornblower is an excellent series. Well worth giving a go if you like historical fiction at all.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:01 PM   #12
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Yep, I have several in pbook. They are out in ebook format too I think though not cheap probably.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:37 PM   #13
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Yep, I have several in pbook. They are out in ebook format too I think though not cheap probably.
Check your local library. I know I was able to get all of them from mine...
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Old 03-30-2013, 09:29 AM   #14
MickeyC
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Hornblower is an excellent series. Well worth giving a go if you like historical fiction at all.
And, if you like historical fiction, you absolutely have to read the George MacDonald Fraser Flashman series. They take place in the Victorian era and are very accurate, interesting and VERY funny.
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Old 03-31-2013, 02:22 AM   #15
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And, if you like historical fiction, you absolutely have to read the George MacDonald Fraser Flashman series. They take place in the Victorian era and are very accurate, interesting and VERY funny.
I agree, and there are lots of footnotes and documentation. But at least in the ebook version I tried a couple of years ago the formatting was pretty poor. I have all the paperbacks, and might try again to see if the formatting has improved.
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