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by Patrick O'Brian

Download Blue at the Mizzen eBook
ISBN:
0786220465
Author:
Patrick O'Brian
Category:
Genre Fiction
Language:
English
Publisher:
Thorndike Pr (February 1, 2000)
Pages:
434 pages
EPUB book:
1430 kb
FB2 book:
1395 kb
DJVU:
1275 kb
Other formats
azw mobi lrf lit
Rating:
4.5
Votes:
888


The novel Blue at the Mizzen is the twentieth and last completed historical novel in the Aubrey-Maturin series by Patrick O'Brian, first published in 1999.

The novel Blue at the Mizzen is the twentieth and last completed historical novel in the Aubrey-Maturin series by Patrick O'Brian, first published in 1999. It is set after the Napoleonic wars, in the fight for Chilean independence from Spain.

Patrick O'Brian is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey-Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso. His first novel, Testimonies, and his Collected Short Stories have recently been reprinted by HarperCollins. He translated many works from French into English, among the novels and memoirs of Simone de Beauvoir and the first volume of Jean Lacouture's biography of Charles de Gaulle.

But,' he went on, looking at the youth, 'I am afraid you have been in the wars. I should think not, indeed,' said Stephen. Now pray lean over, and do not start away at the prick: there. Are you to fight again?'

But,' he went on, looking at the youth, 'I am afraid you have been in the wars. Certainly he had one eye thoroughly blacked, and there was dried blood on his lower face; while one ear was visibly swelling. Oh, sir,' replied Hanson, with a cheerful and full-toothed smile, 'it was only a little sparring. Are you to fight again?'

Patrick O'Brian is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey-Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso.

Patrick O’Brian, until his death in 2000, was one of our greatest contemporary novelists. Blue at the Mizzen is a bit of a departure from the style of many of the other Aubrey-Maturin books, in that much of it is written in Maturin's hand via letters to England. He is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey–Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso. He is the author of many other books including Testimonies, and his Collected Short Stories. In 1995 he was the first recipient of the Heywood Hill Prize for a lifetime’s contribution to literature. The reasoning behind this to be explained below.

Blue at the Mizzen audiobook written by Patrick O’Brian. Narrated by Robert Hardy. No monthly commitment. Listen online or offline with Android, iOS, web, Chromecast, and Google Assistant. The brand new Aubrey-Maturin novel, the twentieth in this classic series. This is the twentieth book in Patrick O’Brian’s highly acclaimed, bestselling series chronicling the adventures of lucky Jack Aubrey and his best friend Stephen Maturin, part ship’s doctor, part secret agent. The novel’s stirring action follows on from that of The Hundred Days.

I dedicate this book, donum indignum, to the Provost and to all those many people who were so kind to me while I was writing it in Trinity College, Dublin.

In addition to twenty volumes in the highly respected Aubrey/Maturin series, Patrick O'Brian's many novels include Testimonies, The Golden Ocean, and The Unknown Shore. I dedicate this book, donum indignum, to the Provost and to all those many people who were so kind to me while I was writing it in Trinity College, Dublin.

Here is the 20th in the series presenting the escapades of Cap. Jack Aubrey of the British Royal Navy ship Surprise and his longtime companion, naval surgeon Stephen Maturin. O'Brian belongs to that.

Blue at the Mizzen book. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Start by marking Blue at the Mizzen (Aubrey & Maturin as Want to Read: Want to Read savin. ant to Read.

Now that the Napoleonic Wars are over, frigate captain Jack Aubrey faces desertion, near sinking, and brawls with British sailors--all before he reaches his next destination, Chile--where he will help the fledgling country break free of Spain.
  • Gavirus
Blue at the Mizzen is the last full Aubrey/Maturin novel. It was published in 1999 a few months before Patrick O'Brian died January 2 in 2000. The story opens in the immediate aftermath of Britain's victory over Napoleon at Waterloo. Aubrey/Maturin are just finishing up a successful cruise in the Mediterranean having successfully ravaged enemy shipyards and with a large prize court award waiting for them. They had been approached in the past by Sir Joseph Blaine representing British intelligence and certain parties in the government to intercede in the efforts of revolutionary groups in South America struggling against Spain. They will do so as an independent ship not part of the British navy. They refit and set out. At a stop in Africa Maturin meets an old acquaintance,whose partner has died recently as has Maturin's long time partner. One thing leads to another and a romantic wooing ensues. Enough of giving away future treasures for first time readers,suffice it to say Blue at the Mizzen is a good read. Yes it has a slow and meandering move to anything resembling resolution, but with O'Brian as with any ocean voyage its the journey not the destination that counts. Blue at the Mizzen may not be on many short lists for best novel, but it is the culmination of perhaps the most rewarding series yet written.
Note: The partial novel The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey(published in the U.S. as 21) which picks up immediately where Blue at the Mizzen leaves off is available and what there is of it is good.
  • Mikarr
This book, the 20th and last of the completed Aubrey/Maturin novels, acts as a bookend in a number of ways. There will never be another volume since the author died some time after this one was published, leaving incomplete notes for a 21st novel, but this one gives a pleasing closure: Napoleon is exiled for the last time early in the volume, and we are treated to a second-hand account of the Battle of Waterloo from a military officer who dines with Surprise's officers. Those who have read the entire series may note a pleasing counterpoint: shortly after the first meeting between Lt. Aubrey and Dr. Maturin in "Master and Commander," the first book, Aubrey receives orders promoting him (on p. 13 of the paperback edition I have) to commander; while on the penultimate page of "Blue at the Mizzen," Captain Aubrey receives orders promoting him to Rear Admiral of the Blue, giving the title to the entire work. (Those readers who, like myself, have watched their careers peak and go into decline with no possibility of a coup so huge as being promoted to flag rank or being awarded an endowed chair, or even tenure, at a university, may want to have a box of Kleenexes with them when they read this part.) So, I find lots to like about this final volume in the series.

On the other hand, there are other elements that don't seem to pay their way. Dr. Maturin starts a romantic dalliance that seems, well, rather odd for someone his age who has already been married and lost his wife in a traffic accident. The absence of "Boney," the French Emperor who is their arch-enemy throughout the entire series, leaves a cavernous hole that is poorly filled with the comparatively lightweight intrigue in South America. This intrigue seems poorly motivated, and perhaps it was in history: Britain was an ally of Spain, and had been for several years before Waterloo, so it seems odd that their government would want to deliberately foment revolution in Spain's American colonies (note, however, this was before the United States had enunciated its Monroe Doctrine). It appears the main objective was abolitionism, as Spain's colonies were "slave states" in American terms. The British Empire did achieve emancipation in 1833, long before the US, so presumably it had an equally potent strain of abolitionism. While there is a naval battle in this book and an amphibious assault, a great deal of it is consumed with less direct action and overall it gives the impression more of a summary than a blow by blow account. Perhaps we are seeing the author's powers weakening and "channel fever" seizing him, his intent being more to finish the book than to perfect it? Perhaps not -- he did start work on another one, so he was evidently unaware of how long he had to live.

In any case, while this book is a worthy final volume in the canon, readers should not expect a reprise of one of the early volumes in the series. The characters and the author have all aged, their arch-enemy is gone, and it almost seems they have seized on South America because they know they would be bored simply returning to their English haunts and leaving the sea. Perhaps that's exactly how the British role in the independence of Spain's New World colonies came to be!
  • Inerrace
_Blue at the Mizzen_ is a bit of a departure from the style of many of the other Aubrey-Maturin books, in that much of it is written in Maturin's hand via letters to England. (The reasoning behind this to be explained below.) This works, giving a detail and depth to a character whose rich inner-life has largely been absent, his role as intelligence officer, physician, scientist and erstwhile companion and confidant to Aubrey overshadowing his personal proclivities.

The Napoloeonic Wars ended The Hundred Days (Vol. Book 19) (Aubrey/Maturin Novels) Aubrey, like many RN post-captains, faces the liklihood of becoming a "yellow admiral" - a promotion to flag-officer rank without a ship or squadron to command, effectively ending one's naval career. To forestall this, Maturin and Aubrey take _Suprise_ to Chile, ostensibly on a hydrographical voyage, in reality to help Chile win its independence from Spain. En route, O'Brian tantalizes readers with two new developments: a new midshipman, Horatio Hanson (the bastard of the Duke of Clarence, Prince William) and a budding romance between Lady Jenny Morris (the widow of Lord Morris, ambassador in Sierra Leone) and Maturin (himself a widower). It is frustrating that these plot points will not be more fully developed.

The voyage south moves at a fast clip, and the narration of _Suprise_ on station is also brief, most of the story focusing on Maturin and Hanson - some readers will be disappointed by this, I found it a refreshing departure from the detailed "watch on watch" description of daily life at sea, and allowed me to get a better sense of Maturin as an emotional being. The single naval engagement Aubrey is involved in is also summative, and which I wish more detail was given; however, it wasn't so much a disappointment to deduct a star in my rating.

Finishing _Blue at the Mizzen_ is somewhat bitter-sweet, it being the last complete novel in the series. I look forward to 21: The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey (Vol. Book 21) (Aubrey/Maturin Novels), but I sense it will be ultimately unsatisfying, the mannuscript unfinished. That I won't see how things will develop between Lady Morris and Maturin and what will happen with young Hanson is similarly disappointing. However, every voyage must end, shipmates going their separate ways, the sea-stories to be regaled and revisited at some later date - and so it is with Aubrey and Maturin. As I've written on most reviews of the series, I highly recommend the books: no one writes nautical fiction like O'Brian, and very few write any sub-genre of fiction like him. Having faced foul weather, stood on the quarter-deck and in the gun-room in countless engagements, and crossed the line several times, I feel a closeness to the characters O'Brian so vividly created. Its been a wonderful, wholly enjoyable experience and one that I encourage any lover of good writing to find for themselves why there is such a passionate and loyal following to these books.