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Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga) Paperback – January 1, 1998


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Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga) + Lieutenant Hornblower + Hornblower and the "Hotspur" (Hornblower Series)
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Product Details

  • Series: Hornblower Saga (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Back Bay Books (1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316289124
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316289122
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (176 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,970 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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.

Review

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 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

The characters and story are quite engaging.
M. Brown
I look forward to reading the rest of the books in the series.
Neal Stublen
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower is a 1950 novel by C. S. Forester.
thepaxdomini

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

189 of 189 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 2, 1999
Format: Paperback
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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191 of 197 people found the following review helpful By P. Caldwell on December 27, 1999
Format: Paperback
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 By Cody Carlson VINE VOICE on January 21, 2000
Format: Paperback
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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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 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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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Homer on May 15, 2011
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 By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 21, 2001
Format: Paperback
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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