Review: Remember the Raisin by Michael Aye – Historic Naval Fiction

In his new book Remember the Raisin, the first of a new trilogy about the War of 1812, Michael Aye explores the fighting in the North West. The book is mainly land based however it includes a good description of Commodore Perry\’s defeat of the British on the Great Lakes.

Aye developed an interesting principal character, Jonah Lee, who as the \’President\’s man\’ is tasked with ensuring the army under General William Harrison takes the fight to the British. He is present at all the major actions of the campaign. As a naval literature fan I have read a few books about the Great Lakes campaign, however Remember the Raisin puts it within the wider conflict which made it an interesting and informative read.

The book appeared to be well researched and the plot flowed well as it linked the various battles together. As you would expect from the author of a naval fiction series the Lakes action was well written and I look forward to reading more of the wider conflict from the perspective of Jonah Lee. Recommended.

via Review: Remember the Raisin by Michael Aye – Historic Naval Fiction.

The New England Mariner Tradition (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction

Robert A. Geake has released a new book, The New England Mariner Tradition: Old Salts, Superstitions, Shanties and Shipwrecks. It is now available in paperback worldwide.

For over three centuries, New Englanders have set sail in search of fortune and adventure–yet death lurked on every voyage in the form of storms, privateers, disease and human error. In hope of being spared by the sea, superstitious mariners practiced cautionary rituals. During the winter of 1779, the crew aboard the Family Trader offered up gin to appease the squalling storms of Neptune. In the 1800s, after nearly fifty shipwrecks on Georges Bank between Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and Nova Scotia, a wizard paced the coast of Marblehead, shouting orders out to sea to guide passing ships to safety. As early as 1705, courageous settlers erected watch houses and lighted beacons at Beavertail Point outside Jamestown, Rhode Island, to aid mariners caught in the swells of Narragansett Bay. Join Robert A. Geake as he explores the forgotten traditions among New England mariners and their lives on land and sea

via The New England Mariner Tradition (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction.

An Interview with Jay Worrall – Historic Naval Fiction

Historic Naval Fiction is pleased to have obtained an Interview with Jay Worrall whose new novel, A Sea Unto Itself was recently released.

What can you tell us about A Sea Unto Itself without spoiling the plot for the readers?

A Sea Unto Itself centers around a mystery. The year is 1799. The young French General Napoleon Bonaparte has established himself in Egypt at great cost the year before. The question is why? Opinions in London are divided. The majority believe that this upstart Napoleon conquered the fabled land of the Pharaohs in order to advance his reputation and bring glory and wealth to himself and France. A less widely held view is that Bonaparte has a greater strategic objective in mind—the conquest of Britain\’s extremely valuable colonies in India. Without the vast wealth derived from these possessions London could hardly execute the war. Charles Edgemont, still a relatively junior captain in the Royal Navy, is given a new command—the Cassandra, 32—and ordered to join a small squadron at the southern end of the Red Sea whose purpose is to prevent the French from exiting the sea and sailing on to the subcontinent. A problem is that the Admiral commanding this squadron openly ridicules any notion that the French would even contemplate such an attempt, much less be able to amass the resources necessary to carry it out. It will be up to Captain Edgemont to determine whether he is correct or not.

Read More An Interview with Jay Worrall – Historic Naval Fiction.

Sailor in the Desert (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction

David Gunn\’s new book is a biography of a sailor aboard an armed RN sloop that spent much of it\’s time under sail. Of interest is the fact that all this took place during the First World War. Sailor in the Desert has just been published in hardcover and is available worldwide.

Sailor in the Desert is the personal account of a Royal Navy sailor\’s experiences during the Mesopotamian campaign of 1915. As an able seaman on an armed sloop supporting the British expedition up the River Tigris, Philip Gunn\’s recollections give a rare perspective of this ill-fated campaign. At the outbreak of war, Phillip Gunn was serving on HMS Clio, a naval sloop fitted with sails and guns stationed in China and immediately tasked with hunting the soon-to-be-famious German cruiser Emden, but failed to prevent her escape. Gunn and Clio were next in action defending the Suez Canal against an attempted Turkish invasion before joining the expedition to invade Turkish-held Mesopotamia (Iraq). When the River Tigris became too shallow for Clio, Gunn took over a Calcutta River Police launch. He towed improvised gunboats to bombard the enemy in close support of the advancing land forces, whose assaults on enemy positions he witnessed. Though he repeatedly came under fire, it was malaria which finally struck him down during the pivotal Battle of Ctesiphon. He was fortunate to survive the journey back downriver. Sailor in the Desert is an authentic account drawn from Phillip Gunn\’s unpublished memoirs as well as conversations with the author, his son David. It is illustrated with archive photographs and colour paintings by Philip Gunn himself.

via Sailor in the Desert (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction.

Some recent ME non-fiction releases (Oct 2013) – Historic Naval Fiction

There are regular releases of new naval non-fiction works, particularly about the ships and men of the Second World War, and new paperback/ebook versions of older works. Some recent titles include:

Donitz, U-Boats, Convoys: The British Version of His Memoirs from the Admiralty\’s Secret Anti-Submarine Reports by Jak P Mallman Showell

The memoirs of Admiral Karl Donitz, Ten Years and Twenty Days, are a fascinating first-hand account of the Battle of the Atlantic as seen from the headquarters of the U-boat fleet. Now, for the first time noted naval historian Jak P. Mallmann Showell has combined Donitz\’s memoirs in a parallel text with the British Admiralty\’s secret Monthly Anti-Submarine Reports to produce a unique view of the U-boat war as it was perceived at the time by both sides. The British Monthly Anti-Submarine Reports were classified documents issued only to senior officers hunting U-boats, and were supposed to have been returned to the Admiralty and destroyed at the end of the War, but by chance a set survived in the archives of the Royal Navy\’s Submarine Museum in Gosport, allowing the reader a hitherto unavailable insight into the British view of the Battle of the Atlantic as it was being fought. Together with the author\’s commentary adding information that was either unknown or too secret to reveal at the time, this book gives possibly the most complete contemporary account of the desperate struggle in the North Atlantic in the Second World War.

Read More Some recent ME non-fiction releases (Oct 2013) – Historic Naval Fiction.

A Divided Command (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction

Author David Donachie\’s new novel, A Divided Command, will be released in hardcover in the UK on 25 November 2013 and in the US on 15 March 2014.

1794. The Mediterranean is proving dangerous waters for John Pearce and his Pelicans. Having left his lover Emily, who is also the wife of his mortal enemy Ralph Barclay, in the Tuscan port of Leghorn, Pearce is detained in Naples. When he unknowingly delivers a letter promoting the shady and incompetent Admiral Hotham, Pearce finds himself entangled in a political plot that soon puts those closest to him at peril. When reunited with Emily, John Pearce faces a losing battle to keep her reputation intact. Although his Pelicans aid in the endeavour, Emily sees no future for her with Pearce and leaves while he is conveying private letters for Horatio Nelson to the British Ambassador, Sir William Hamilton. Learning of Emily\’s departure, Pearce sets off in pursuit and has to take on the superior force of Barbary Corsairs who have targeted the merchant ship Emily is travelling on, the Sandown Castle. Outgunned by a barbaric opponent, John Pearce\’s chances of survival – as well as those of Emily and Pearce\’s crew – are dubious. And even if they can win this fierce battle, another threat looms on the horizon as Pearce is not the only one chasing Emily; Ralph Barclay has learned of his wife\’s desertion and is on his way to recapture her.

via A Divided Command (HC) – Historic Naval Fiction.

Cook (K) – Historic Naval Fiction

Rob Mundle\’s new book, Cook, will be  available for kindle download worldwide on 1 November 2013.

Captain James Cook is one of the greatest maritime explorer of all time — only the acclaimed fifteenth-century explorers, Christopher Columbus and Vasco da Gama, can stand with him.

Bestselling author of Fatal Storm, Bligh and Flinders, Rob Mundle, explores the life and travels of James Cook in a major new biography for lovers of adventure and the romance of sail. Over three remarkable voyages of discovery into the Pacific in the latter part of the eighteenth century, Cook unravelled the centuries-old mystery surrounding the existence of Terra Australis Incognita – the great south land – he became the first explorer to circumnavigate New Zealand and prove it comprised two main islands, discovered the Hawaiian Islands, and much more.

Cook was a man who pursued a teenager′s dream that evolved from a chance encounter in a small seafront village on the east coast of England. It was a dream that became a reality and transported him to legendary status among all who mapped the world, on land and sea. Through the combination of hard-won skills as a seafarer, the talents of a self-taught navigator and surveyor, and an exceptional ability to lead and care for his men, Cook contributed to changing the shape of the world map more than anyone else.

via Cook (K) – Historic Naval Fiction.

Brigantine Lexington Series – Historic Naval Fiction

Over the past few weeks author David C. Perry has released a trilogy of short stories in the Brigantine Lexington Series ahead of a proposed new novel. Set during the American Revolutionary War they are available worldwide for kindle download.

The short stories are:

– The USS Lexington and HMS Edward

– USS Lexington and the Battle of Turtle Gut Inlet

– USS Lexington and the HMS Lady Susan

via Brigantine Lexington Series – Historic Naval Fiction.

Merriman and the French Invasion (K) – Historic Naval Fiction

Author Roger Burnage has just released the second book of The Merriman Chronicles, Merriman and the French Invasion. It is available for Kindle download worldwide.

Recalled home from the West Indies, Lieutenant James Merriman is promoted to the rank of Post Captain and given command of the frigate Lord Stevenage. It is known that the French are amassing an army and a fleet to invade Ireland and join with Irish rebels. If it succeeds then England will be ringed by enemy countries under the control of Napoleon Bonaparte, and only the navy stands between France and England.

Once again Merriman is involved in the murky world of secret agents with English spymaster Mr Grahame, a man he knows well, to find out what they can about the French plans in Ireland where Merriman\’s old enemy Moreau, a French agent, appears once more. This is a rousing story about murder, fights with the French at sea and ashore with the background of the real French invasion of Ireland which was attempted but failed.

via Merriman and the French Invasion (K) – Historic Naval Fiction.

A Sea Unto Itself (K) – Historic Naval Fiction

After a break of several years author Jay Worrall has just released a new novel in his Charles Edgemont series, A Sea Unto Itself. It is now available for kindle download worldwide.

The year is 1799. The year before, Napoleon Bonaparte, the newest upstart among Republican France’s generals, led a large expeditionary force across the Mediterranean to conquer Egypt, where he remains. Well enough; but why? France’s enemies are in Europe, not Africa. Egypt, the fabled land of the Pharaohs, is of no earthly use to this young Napoleon. Or is it? Could it be that Egypt is intended only as a stepping stone for an invasion of Britain’s troubled colonies in India? Incredible though it seems, such a threat could deprive England of the great source of its wealth and devastate her ability to continue the war against her revolutionary enemy. It has long been known to colonial powers that Egypt is a corner stone to domination of Europe and Napoleon well knows that control of the Red Sea is crucial to his plans.

via A Sea Unto Itself (K) – Historic Naval Fiction.