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Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

C. S. Forester
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (189 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.00
Kindle Price: $7.99
You Save: $6.01 (43%)

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Book Description

Here we meet Horatio Hornblower, a young man of 17, in this Volume #1 of what becomes the 11 volume set about the career of this British Naval officer fighting against Napoleon and his tyranny of Europe in the late seventeen hundreds. Bullied and forced into a duel, he takes an even chance. And then he has many more chances to show his skills and ingenuities - from sailing a ship full of wetted and swelling rice to imprisonment and saving the lives of shipwrecked sailors. And along the way, he fights galleys, feeds cattle, stays out of the way of the guillotine, and makes friends with a Duchess. Here Hornblower becomes a man and develops the strength of character which will make him a hero to his men, and to all England.

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

This trio offer more of the salty adventures of the title character, who sailed the ocean blue during the Napoleonic Wars.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.


Mr. Forester is a more than able historical novelist, explaining many of the principles of sailing and fighting a square-rigged British man-of-war. He also has a strong command of military tactics and strategy.... -- The Wall Street Journal, Robert L. Simison

Product Details

  • File Size: 1668 KB
  • Print Length: 322 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0316289124
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: eNet Press Inc (May 2, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004Z1GBEO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,186 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
192 of 192 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic though not Hornblower's best outing June 2, 1999
By A Customer
This first Hornblower book that Forester wrote was BEAT TO QUARTERS, and that is still arguably the best Hornblower book to read first (though not the best in the series). Because MR. MIDSHIPMAN HORNBLOWER comes first in the saga's timeline, though, many readers start here and unfortunately do not get Hornblower at his best point of entry. The pacing of this collection of stories simply does not grip the reader as well as that of the novels. I'm sure they worked fine when published individually in the popular magazines of the day, but when clutched together like this, an awkward lack of fluidity results.
That said, MR. MIDSHIPMAN HORNBLOWER is still an excellent book, rich with fascinating incident and detail, and anyone who has started the series will certainly read it -- the whole series is just too good! Certainly by the last episode in this book, quite a long story, the young Hornblower has gotten into the thick of it and you have begun to find out (if this is indeed where you've come in) just why Forester continues to be held in such high regard by generation after generation of readers.
Another important point is that MR. MIDSHIPMAN HORNBLOWER is the material from which the recent A&E series took its inspiration, and you do owe it to yourself if you saw it on TV to read the book and find out why and how that pivotal duel *really* happened. Be prepared to learn that C.S. Forester's plot turns were considerably more dramatic and thought-provoking than the hash (though admittedly watchable hash) made of them for TV consumption.
Incidentally, this paperback edition is lovely. The woodcut-style cover artwork looks really nice, and the pages and typeface being about the same size as a hardback edition make handling it and reading it a special pleasure
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194 of 200 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Series order for the Hornblower books December 27, 1999
For those of you getting started with this series, here is the series order (hey, we need to know this in order to buy the darn books!): Mr. Midshipman Hornblower, Lieutenant Hornblower, Hornblower and the Hotspur, Hornblower During the Crisis, Hornblower and the Atropos, Beat to Quarters, Ship of the Line, Flying Colours, Commodore Hornblower, Lord Hownblower, Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies. The other titles you'll see are different 3-in-1-cover combinations of the above titles, though not always in series order (go figure), Cadet versions of the same titles above by different titles (REALLY go figure), and companion books. There IS one omnibus, so I'm told, with some short stories in it that fall chronologically somewhere in the time span covered by the first three books, but I don't know any more than that yet.
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46 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mr. Midshipman Hornblower: A Slow Start for the Series January 21, 2000
The 'Hornblower' novels by C. S. Forester are all consistently entertaining and fun, but the first novel in the series, 'Mr. Midshipman Hornblower,' is a rather slow start. Rather than a single novel, it is a series of short stories revolving around Hornblower's first years at sea. While the stories maintain that sense of adventure that are Forester's trademark, it lacks a consistency which is to be found in the later volumes. 'Mr. Midshipman Hornblower' is must reading for fans of the series but for those new to the 'Hornblower' novels perhaps a better introduction would be to read 'Lieutenant Hornblower,' the second novel of the series.
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37 of 41 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor proofreading July 30, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I LOVE Forester's Hornblower novels, and have worn out a couple of paperback sets. It's great to have these stories in ebook form, but whoever transcribed them did a terrible job. There are incorrect words used in many places, and in some places find-and-replace has created errors. For example in Hornblower and the Atropos, the word "triumph" always appears as "Triumph", capitalized and in italics, because at one place in the book there is a ship named the Triumph.

Such sloppy work would be acceptable in a $.99 edition, but not in a $6.00 one.

This comment applies to ALL the Hornblower ebooks.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Midshipman Hornblower needs proofreading May 15, 2011
By Homer
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
C.S. Forester's Hornblower series is unequalled, however, this eBook edition needs proofreading. For example, at one point "jolly boat" is mistyped as "oily boat". Surely for $6.00 readers should expect basic proofreading to be performed.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting Short Stories about Hornblower's First Voyages October 21, 2001
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower is the prequel to the Horatio Hornblower series. Written as the sixth book chronologically, it covers the very first times when Hornblower served in His Majesty’s navy. My recommendation is that you read it first, so that you can follow Hornblower chronologically along over his career as it develops.
Since much of service aboard a naval vessel is routine, C.S. Forester gives us the high spots of Hornblower’s first years in the form of short stories beginning at age 17 when he entered the navy.
Each story is nicely balanced among the following qualities: Hornblower’s inexperience; the rapid shift of circumstances that can occur at sea; Hornblower’s physical and psychological weaknesses and courage to overcome them; the demands of honor; the importance of thinking clearly, getting good information, and making a swift decision; the benefits of discipline; and the brotherhood of all seaman before the dangers they face.
Those who are interested in the war between Britain and France after the French Revolution in 1789 will find the material to bring those events to life in a vivid way. I learned a lot about the details of naval warfare as it was conducted then.
The weakness of most short story writers is that their plots and resolutions often become overly predictable. These short stories are predictable only in their originality and unpredictability. As such, I found myself drawn forward, wondering what rabbit Forester would next pull out of the hat.
This is just the sort of book that I loved to read as a teenager, and I could feel the years peeling off as I raced through the stories. This book would be a wonderful gift to a teenager who likes adventure tales based on historical events.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard a'larboard
Ahoy! I love the Horatio Hornblower books from when I first read them as kid. Horatio is a genuine hero of the highest character in a very tense environment. Read more
Published 18 days ago by Bobby D. Odom
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, moves quickly and effortlessly, cannot be put down,...
Obviously a well written novel even for the non-naval type. One is ready to pipe on board and sail over the far horizon.
Published 23 days ago by retiredpilot
4.0 out of 5 stars Do not miss this
Start of what I know is a very entertaining series of volumes by an author who new his naval history and brought it to life for his many many readers. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Don Boot
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read!! very well written.
Published 28 days ago by Samuel M. James
4.0 out of 5 stars but pretty good.
Not quite Patrick Obrian, but pretty good.
Published 1 month ago by Brandon Moak
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
It is a series of short stories and none are given enough depth
Published 1 month ago by peter valentini
5.0 out of 5 stars Kept me reading
I enjoy stories about the sea, ships and the men who sail them. I have read many. I love the way Forster envelopes the technical operation of the ship throughout the story.
Published 1 month ago by john pine
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Fun read
Published 1 month ago by John Healey
5.0 out of 5 stars Both are very good but obviously the TV series had some changes from...
I watched the A&E series first, then I had to get the books. Both are very good but obviously the TV series had some changes from the books but they were good changes.
Published 1 month ago by Thor&Daire
5.0 out of 5 stars great!
A great adventure! A must read for those who enjoy the idea of sails and salt spray. Naval adventures at its best!
Published 1 month ago by James
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