By the Mast Divided : John Pearce

  • by David Donachie
  • Narrated by Peter Wickham
  • Series: John Pearce
  • 15 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

London: 1793. Young firebrand John Pearce, on the run from the authorities, is illegally press-ganged from the Pelican tavern into brutal life aboard HMS Brilliant, a frigate on her way to war. In the first few days, Pearce discovers the Navy is a world in which he can prosper. And he is not alone; he is drawn to a group of men who eventually form an exclusive gun crew, the Pelicans, with Pearce their elected leader. During an action-packed two weeks, as HMS Brilliant chases a French privateer across the English Channel, these disparate men form friendships that will last a lifetime.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


It's hard to assess this book. I knew it would be well read as I've previously bought a couple of Kate Ellis audiobooks and enjoyed Peter Wickham's narration. By The Mast Divided is clearly well researched with painstaking attention to detail. The problem I found is that the descriptions of activities and the development of the characters are done so thoroughly that it takes most of the pace out of the story. Almost all of part one - just over seven hours of listening - is over and all we've done is get the main characters pressed into naval service and leaving English shores. I feel a bit of a misery criticising the book because the quality of the writing is very good. However, I found myself 'tuning out' for a few minutes, then paying attention again and finding I hadn't missed much! On the basis of this, I much prefer Bernard Cornwell to David Donachie when we're fighting the French and the officer classes!
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- Phil

Like Dudley Pope and Ellis K. Meacham

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

If your like navy novels from the Naboleon time and if your liked Dudley Pope and Ellis K. Meacham you will like this serie.

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- Steen

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-10-2007
  • Publisher: ISIS Audio Books