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Betrayal: A Kydd Sea Adventure (Kydd Sea Adventures) Hardcover – September 26, 2012
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"Features more high-seas adventure, ocean battles, bloody melees, and general villainy. Stockwin is a master of Napoleonic-era atmosphere and rich descriptions of the military, politics, and society. Stockwin's series is approaching the level of C.S. Forester's Hornblower books." —Publishers Weekly (August 20, 2012)
About the Author
Julian Stockwin is a retired teacher and educational psychologist, and a former lieutenant commander of the Royal Navy Reserve. He entered the British Navy at age 15 and was eventually named a Member of the British Empire. He is the author of the Kydd Sea Adventures series.
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I have great admiration for this series as a whole, and love the way Mr. Stockwin finds new material in the well-plowed fields of nautical fiction, specifically the British navy during the Napoleonic Wars. However, I don't think he has managed Kydd's relationship with his intellectual sidekick, Nicholas Renzi, as well as Patrick O'Brian did with Aubrey/Maturin. Renzi is an interesting, well-rounded character; but while he and Kydd are close friends they don't really rely on one another to any great extent. Their free time isn't routinely spent in one another's company, and in recent books they seem to be at odds more often than not. I'd like to see them get on the same page.
(Scale: * - unreadable, couldn't finish. ** - bad or very bad, but readable. *** - good work, well worth its price. **** - very good in its genre. ***** - timeless masterpiece.)
I clicked on the star that went with "I liked it". And I did. But it wasn't his best. The research into the time and place of the action was, as usual, excellent, but it was slow slow going for the first 85 percent, then it picked up, but the exciting last few days and hours of this story were almost glossed over, as if the author just 'called it in'. I'm not saying it is bad, because it isn't bad at all, this author has set a high standard for entertainment and historical accuracy, unfortunately he didn't quite meet the standard in the entertainment department. That's my opinion, and well, we know what opinions are. I'm glad I read it, and I'm going to read the next one he writes, but I hope he dials the entertainment and action back up to the usual 'eleven'.