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» Apparent Errors/typos in Aubrey-Maturin Novels
Tue 21 Mar 2017, 22:05 by TimeOnTarget

» Horatio Hornblower Series
Tue 21 Mar 2017, 16:55 by 80 Winters

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Mon 09 Jan 2017, 17:16 by 80 Winters

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Horatio Hornblower Series

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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Mon 06 Feb 2017, 17:44

Now that almost 3 years has passed since my 5th reading of the Hornblower saga..........it's time to revisit once again.

Last night, I began Midshipman Hornblower on audiobook and for a wonderful hour, I revisited the well crafted genesis of a naval career that will bring me many hours of reading enjoyment from an author who could play true human emotions against real-to-life events and do it so believably.  As a 'weaver-of-tales' C.S. Forester turns cotton into silk.
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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Thu 02 Mar 2017, 17:23

It came to me yesterday as I was beginning The Happy Return (aka Beat to Quarters) how "abruptly" it began.

1. Almost nothing about the adventures that preceded it.
2. Nothing about his relationship with Bush.
3. Nothing about the loss of his 2 children.

While 'a great story' (and the one that launched the epic series) it might have been 'enriched' by the knowledge of what 'went before'.

Had it only been written in 'chronological order'.
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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Tue 07 Mar 2017, 05:23

Having finished The Happy Return today (6th reading in many years), I did a critical review, in my mind, of this "1st book" in Forester's classic series.

My thoughts (perceptions) are that Forester's 'style' was somewhat more 'abrupt' (or maybe it was just his portrayal of Hornblower and his actions) here, than in the  'retrospective novels' he wrote in later years.

Also, I'm reminded that the 'storyline' of the novel put greater weight on some events (the fight with Natividad) while totally omitting others that were key to the 1952 Captain Hornblower movie (Lady Barbara's bout with 'the fever').

And I see that 'the loss of his children came almost as an 'after thought'.
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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Sat 11 Mar 2017, 04:43

Reading A Ship of the Line (actually, listening to it on audiobook) and becoming more aware of 'the shoals' awaiting you when you read a series that was written 'out of chronological order'.

One of the most evident 'shoals' is Forester's words on the relationship between Hornblower and Bush. In fact, today I heard Forester intimate that Hornblower had only known Bush for '3 years'.
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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Tue 21 Mar 2017, 03:12

A little help please:

Re-reading Hornblower and the Crisis and the mission offered to Hornblower by Marston to infiltrate a bogus message to Villeneuve to get him to depart Ferrol and sail out to meet the British navy. While this 'mission' is laid out in the book, we're told nothing more as this is a 'short story'.
I know that in one of the major series that I've read, the same 'mission' is described in detail. I'm thinking that it was in Woodman's  Nathaniel Drinkwater series. If not, from what series did it come?
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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by Astrodene on Tue 21 Mar 2017, 12:53

I don't recall any other author using interception of that courier in that way, however Pope has his charcter intercepting a messenger to the channel ports with most of the book set in France in Ramage and the Guillotine which you might be thinking of.

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Re: Horatio Hornblower Series

Post by 80 Winters on Tue 21 Mar 2017, 16:55

I remember only a bit about 'the episode' as the protagonist 'distracted' the young courier with an invitation to dinner/drink while the protagonist's cohort slipped into the courier's room and placed the bogus letter into the mail pouch. It may well have been Ramage, I'll peruse Ramage and the Guillotine when I finish this reading of Hornblower.
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