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This book at first threatened to be my favourite of the series and then went on to deliver on that promise. No mean achievement given the quality of what’s gone before. This really is fast-paced and multi-faceted. The court martial the blurb headlines was intelligently and entertainingly observed but was really only the pre-cursor to what followed. At blistering speed we are carried through scandal, mutiny, an epic voyage north, a logistical nightmare and battles against both the enemy and the implacable sea.
Christian Rodska seems to step it up a notch from his previous excellent performances allowing slightly more passion into his already authentic reading. Stockwin’s excellent historical notes at the end give a small window into his undoubtedly tireless research and depth of expertise.
I think most authors would find enough material in this plot to fill at least two books and there is an argument that for example Kydd’s encounter with a French spy and what would have been an incredible journey north might have merited an extra hour between them. I’d have happily lapped it up I am sure. There were things missing that were included in previous episodes. I wasn’t disappointed personally to see no romantic interest but did miss Renzi just a little – surprisingly little!
The only thing I can do is to recommend that if time allows set aside a good two to two and a half hours for the ending of the book. It’s unlikely you’ll feel like putting it down during that time and it will be a very enjoyable session with your headphones I promise!
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