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Floating Gold: Under Admiralty Orders - The Oliver Quintrell Series - Book 1 Kindle Edition
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The reader doesn't care about any of them or what becomes of any of them. Young man Will's grandfather is gravely injured in a shipbuilding accident, but Will runs to retrieve the small boat he was building and ends up floating out to sea, picked up and impressed into service aboard HMS Elusive as she is leaving port. No angst. No regret. No introspection into the unfairness of it all, nor worry over the fate of his badly bleeding grandfather. Months later, Will gets lashed for insubordination, but a page later it's as though it never happened. No pain, no suffering, no recrimination, no healing process. Wow. He's superman and can return to his duties after twelve lashes without a wince. Now who among us can do that?
Captain Quintrell leaves behind a wife who irritates him (why?), visits a mistress whom we learn nothing about, and shows no emotion or motivation at all. Exceedingly proper for a sea captain in front of his men, but we're the readers -- we're supposed to be let in on his self-doubt, goals, ideals, sleeplessness, self-recrimination, etc., and it is just not there. Second-in-command Parry also remains an enigma. The author just gives no emotional tags to the characters upon which a reader can cling.
Further compounding the problem is the failure to capture the tone and cadences of the times. (An area of strength for Patrick O'Brian which his fans adore.) Yes, the author sprinkles in the appropriate nautical terms, and uses forms of expression obviously researched from the time. But they stand out glaringly from the rest of the work, being inserted merely to try to authenticate the time period. The reader is jerked from the flow of the story by their insertion in otherwise modern speech because it is so obvious that was why they were inserted.
Wait for the movie. It will make a great action/adventure movie.
express how bad it is and why it is so bad, but I don't. All I can say is once I read beyond the free sample the book seemed to fall apart. The story jumps from isolated situation to isolated situation. The characters are really poorly developed and I found that there were none I really even cared for. Maybe I didn't give the book a real chance. Maybe the author eventually ties everything together in a really interesting and dramatic way but I'll never know because I just couldn't make myself finish it.
I'll be getting more ebooks from this series. Well done.