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Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

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Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by TRDG on Fri 26 Aug 2011, 17:59

I hav'nt read this one in a while so please forgive until I do a refresh on it.

This first book got my interest right away as Kydd was a pressed man from the get go. And that was something I have never read about, until now.
Thomas Paine Kydd was a wig maker (of all things I thought, LOL) when he was "picked up" and sent into the line ship Duke Williams.

So we seem to have a more down to earth sea adventure here, something I quite liked, as well as the different perspectives from other series I have read. Ship life, making friends and enemies as well as a battle or two made me interested in buying the second book in the series.

Cheers, so along with the spoiler alert to be used if key plot points are posted, what are your thoughts on Stockwin's first Kydd novel?

Link to the site review

http://www.historicnavalfiction.com/index.php/book-title-index/k/598

Tom


Last edited by TRDG on Mon 29 Aug 2011, 15:48; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Paul-B on Sun 28 Aug 2011, 08:15

I love it. Was the first Kydd book I read, and the reading of it has encouraged me to obtain the complete set of Kydd audio books (I love audio books, and the Kydd ones, read by Christian Rodska are just superb, he's probably one of the best narrators I've listened to). I'm currently up to "Tenacious", which has possibly the best ever description of a Naval battle (The Battle of The Nile) I've ever read, totally gripping.
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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by TRDG on Mon 29 Aug 2011, 16:12

Thanks for the thoughts Paul, still thinking myself if I will start checking into audio books myself and see how it goes.

The writing for this book was again fifferent than the series I have already read, and it got my interest up, as it did yours!!

Cheers, more when I re-read this one!!

Tom
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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Corpsman Up on Tue 13 Sep 2011, 03:27

The first got my attention and now I am on the Second. So far it is a good read and it really does give a different light on the hardships in a man of war. I did not know that "pressed men" had less pay and did not share in the prize monies.
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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Paul-B on Tue 13 Sep 2011, 11:31

I found "Mutiny" to be flawed, in relation to Kydd's relationship with the mutineers, and "Quarterdeck" didn't live up to the promise of "Kydd", "Artemis" and "Seaflower", but I persevered and am really glad I did - Stockwin's graphic description of the Battle of The Nile in "Tenacious" as seen from the gundeck and the quarterdeck is probably one of the best of such descriptions in any book anywhere. Totally gripping.

I'm not aware that pressed men didn't share in prize monies, I haven't found any reference to this anywhere, but I admit I could be wrong. I believe that pressed men were paid the same rates as volunteers but didn't get the initial bonus which volunteers were given, which amounted to Conduct money and two months wages, out of which they had to pay for slops (clothes and a hammock).
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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Kade1301 on Sun 03 Aug 2014, 19:16

TRDG wrote:....
Thomas Paine Kydd was a wig maker (of all things I thought, LOL) ...

Does anybody know whether the wig-making is based on a real person? Because frankly, I don't buy it. Especially when Tom climbs into the rigging during a gale after being only on board for a few days - just for fun. Based on my experience switching from a sedentary job to a physical one Tom Kydd should have been completely sore and hardly able to crawl for a few weeks, not looking for extra activity.

What sounds true is that he would be good at sewing (and possibly knot-making).

And by the way - wouldn't the captain have been able to get the necessary men from the Impress Service, only 5 days after the declaration of war? I don't quite see the need for going up to Guildford and catch landsmen who are not very useful on board anyway.

So far I'm not very happy with the series - does it get better?

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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Astrodene on Mon 04 Aug 2014, 11:53

It's a long time since I read it so I do not remember the particulars but I can see a repressed youth bored with his indoor sedentary job enjoying himself by climbing rigging. His job does not necessarily link to him being unfit, as in modern times where office workers go jogging he may have been active outside work, climbing trees or whatever.

The impress service needs to have someone to impress. As war breaks out there are hundreds of ships to man and the seaman's job is to be at sea so many of them will be abroad in the merchant service and voyages are not short. A minor percentage will be in port and have been caught and the rest will be caught up as their ships get back but 5 days in it is plausible there is a shortage

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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Kade1301 on Mon 04 Aug 2014, 12:10

I would expect a wig maker in 1793 to spend 8 to 10 hours a day, 6 days a week in his workshop. If he doesn't live above the workshop he'd obviously walk there and back, and I would think he'd quite simply not have time to be active outside work!

Certainly not for climbing trees (unless that's the only way to get the apples off the family's tree, if they have a garden) - he might be chopping wood, if they don't heat with coal.

Nope, sorry, I don't buy it. Now, if he had been a farm hand...

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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by reb01501 on Mon 04 Aug 2014, 13:24

Kade1301 wrote:
TRDG wrote:....
Thomas Paine Kydd was a wig maker (of all things I thought, LOL) ...

Does anybody know whether the wig-making is based on a real person? Because frankly, I don't buy it. Especially when Tom climbs into the rigging during a gale after being only on board for a few days - just for fun. Based on my experience switching from a sedentary job to a physical one Tom Kydd should have been completely sore and hardly able to crawl for a few weeks, not looking for extra activity.

What sounds true is that he would be good at sewing (and possibly knot-making).

And by the way - wouldn't the captain have been able to get the necessary men from the Impress Service, only 5 days after the declaration of war? I don't quite see the need for going up to Guildford and catch landsmen who are not very useful on board anyway.

So far I'm not very happy with the series - does it get better?
I say give him (Stockwin) the benefit of the doubt. This was, after all, his first novel, and my opinion is that each one in the series becomes progressively better.

Even O'Brian and Forrester had a few less-than-spectacular novels until they hit their stride.

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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Kade1301 on Tue 05 Aug 2014, 18:51

That's exactly what I wanted to hear, reb, thank you! I also think that an author's first novel is not necessarily his best (apart, probably, from Tom Clancy's Hunt for Red October). Of course, sometime in the series then they generally reach a point where they run out of ideas or get fed up, or whatever, and the quality drops. So I'll give Tom Kydd another chance (I'd expect his past on land to become less and less important and being mentioned less and less, anyway).

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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Chromedust on Mon 02 Jan 2017, 21:00

I found this one better than some of the later books in the series.

Unfortunately we never learn how his old life compares with his new one. I'd like to have heard something about his old life as a wig maker in a province town.

I mean, it was his father's workshop and he was not at the bottom of society. As the 20 year old heir of a wig maker workshop he was probably at the right age to look for a wife too. And he didn't have more siblings than that one sister?


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Re: Kydd (book 1 in the Kydd series)

Post by Astrodene on Tue 03 Jan 2017, 12:37

It's just back story, and whilst it may be of interest to some the author must concentrate on what the majority have bought the book for which is being at sea. There are a number of series that go into side issues at great depth and they never feature in my favourites

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