Could someone please help me find a certain naval adventure novel?
Hello everyone, I'm new here and would like to ask you to help me find a certain book, title and author.
In my youth I read a book that at least in great part described the adventures of an Englishman (midshipman?) at sea in the Royal Navy under sails.
Does anyone perhaps recognize the following bits and pieces?
- Three Captains, brothers, called after biblical characters such as Sadrach, Mesach, Abednego or the like,
- One of them evil, but bible-quoting: - leave off the spirits - "for they make war on the soul!" he would roar and kick a drunken bosun over the poop deck.
- One sailor, a black man, one other (with a deadeye?) and the hero re-fasten a loose cannon, risking their lives. This mix is not regarded well.
"Where did you get that deadeye?" the evil captain asks. "At Trafalgar(?), sir! ..?.. replied, under captain... a good captain, sir", lying in both respects. "Aye, better that (the namby-pampies...)" the captain growls back.
- The black man, to receive whiplashes, is saved by applying "the pickaninny's friend", a mixture of tar an petroleum or such, to his back, which is smuggled to him into the brig by a fellow sailor (the one with the deadeye?)
- El Fairhead, a British captive and castle clown in Egypt, rescues the hero from being shot to death with arrows by his Arab master.
- El Fairhead tied to a cannon to be fired over the harbor at eight in the morning, is rescued and replaced by his evil brother - the evil bible-quoting one captain?
El Fairhead and his brothers is sort of the center piece.
At one point perhaps, the hero goes for his sword hilt after receiving an order he does not accept. "Do you menace a superior officer?" his superior asks. 'He knew he could be court martialed for the gesture alone.' (And I do hope I am not mixing things up here)
Can anyone help me out? Then please send me a message! :-)
(Edited by OldGermanGuy)
Aura: Can't say I recognize the story. But, I was once in your situation, where I wanted to find a book I read in my youth. Eventually I got a reply at OnlineBookClub.org
You might have luck there, too.
Zizzyphus: suggestion 1) His Majesty's Dragon, the first of the historical fantasy Temeraire series by Naomi Novik
suggestion 2) In Sharpe's Trafalgar (2000), by Bernard Cornwell
suggestion 3) The Aubrey–Maturin series is a sequence of nautical historical novels—20 completed and one unfinished—by Patrick O'Brian. which I think you would LOVE. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aubrey–Maturin_series
e I i: I think the first book of the Patrick O'Brian series is called "Midshipman" or some such. Also, there is a series of novels written in the same period (Man-o-War days of sail etc..late 1600s-early 1700s) featuring a sailor called Bolitho. I can't recall the author. The series was many novels long... in around the 20 mark, if I recall. Same as the The Aubrey–Maturin series mentioned earlier by Zizzy.