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Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga Book 1) by [Forester, C. S.]
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Mr. Midshipman Hornblower (Hornblower Saga Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 290 customer reviews

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Length: 310 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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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

Product Details

  • File Size: 1138 KB
  • Print Length: 310 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: eNet Press Inc (May 2, 2011)
  • Publication Date: May 2, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004Z1GBEO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,665 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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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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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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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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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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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Format: Paperback
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower is the first installment chronologically in the saga of Horatio Hornblower, certainly one of the most beloved characters of 20th century fiction. Unlike other works, this one is not so much a novel as a series of short stories intended to show the progression of Hornblower from a scared schoolboy to a young adult exercising leadership. As such the series opener can be read with equal enjoyment by young or old. Younger readers will certainly identify with the scared midshipman who is bullied by a senior midshipman and in light of the Columbine High School tragedy, this section bears re-reading. For older readers, like me, it will help rekindle the spirit of adventure that seemed to fill life in earlier years. I am reluctant to give it a five star rating, as I know later works in the series will be even better but I am justifying it because it is a series of short stories as opposed to a novel.
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower was first published in 1950 by an English author who had lived extensively in the US and who was having some of his novels made into films. It only makes sense for Forester to avoid offending a very large American audience. He achieves this goal with incredible marketing panache. He establishes Hornblower's birth date as July 4, 1776 and manages a double coup. First, he avoids having Hornblower fight in the American Revolution. Second, he says as an Englishmen to his American audience, `We are the same people you are with the same values and heroes.' Given the close relationship of Britain and the US following the end of WWII and the non-reflective American patriotism of the time, Forester could not have his hero countering American values, as those were the same values that Britons espoused.
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