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The Golden Ocean

Patrick O'Brian (Author)

Overview | Inside the Book
 

The first novel Patrick O'Brian ever wrote about the sea, a precursor to the acclaimed Aubrey/Maturin series.

In the year 1740, Commodore (later Admiral) George Anson embarked on a voyage that would become one of the most famous exploits in British naval history. Sailing through poorly charted waters, Anson and his men encountered disaster, disease, and astonishing success. They circumnavigated the globe and seized a nearly incalcuable sum of Spanish gold and silver, but only one of the five ships survived.

This is the background to the first novel Patrick O'Brian ever wrote about the sea, a precursor to the acclaimed Aubrey/Maturin series that shares the excitement and rich humor of those books. The protagonist is Peter Palafox, son of a poor Irish parson, who signs on as a midshipman, never before having seen a ship. Together with his lifelong friend Sean, Peter sets out to seek his fortune, embarking upon a journey of danger, disappointment, foreign lands, and excitement.

Here is a tale certain to please not only admirers of O'Brian's work but also any reader with an adventurous soul.

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • October 1996
  • ISBN 978-0-393-31537-0
  • 5.5 × 8.3 in / 288 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide including Canada, but excluding the British Commonwealth.

Endorsements & Reviews

“I haven’t read novels [in the past ten years] except for all of the Patrick O’Brian series. It was, unfortunately, like tripping on heroin. I started on those books and couldn’t stop.” — E. O. Wilson, Boston Globe

“[A] rousing novelistic retelling of a particularly colorful chapter in the history of the imperialist wars of the mid-18th century....Robust and exhilarating....[The] power [of the sea] as a kind of fate is rendered with the Conradian force that shows where O'Brian was headed as a narrative writer.” — Tom Clark, Los Angeles Times

“Both aficionados and newcomers will be swept up by the richness of Mr. O'Brian's prodigious imagination.” — Scott Veale, New York Times Book Review

“In the present case the names were provided for me, together with the whole sequence of events, just as they were for Homer, Virgil, and many others....I was fortunate enough to have great material, and I wrote the book in about six weeks (or was it less?), laughing most of the time.” — Patrick O'Brian on the writing of The Golden Ocean

Also by Patrick O'Brian All

  1. Book Cover21: The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey

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    Volume(s): Book 21

  2. Book CoverBlue at the Mizzen

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    Volume(s): Book 20

  3. Book CoverA Book of Voyages

    Hardcover

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