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Desolation Island (Aubrey Maturin Series) (1991, W. W. Norton & Company) 3 stars

Review of 'Desolation Island (Aubrey Maturin Series)' on Goodreads

3 stars

In this installment of the Aubrey-Maturin series, Captain Aubrey is tasked with carrying a load of convicts to New Holland (Australia) and assisting Captain Bligh (yes, that Captain Bligh, of HMS Bounty infamy) with his troubles with the locals there.



Patrick O'Brian is a seal: a most graceful creature in the water. His ability to fully immerse the reader in the early 19th-century British naval experience is unparalleled. He is, hands-down, the greatest historical novelist I've ever read. Seldom has a writer been able to create such a fully realized atmosphere as this. Certainly, this series is at its highest point when they are out at sea, doing what sailors do, talking how sailors talk. Even if you don't fully understand everything, you just go with it. It's surprising how much you pick up just by the way it's presented.



Unfortunately, seals aren't very graceful on land, and neither is …