Wednesday 22 May 2019

A Discovering Diamonds review of Sealed Orders by Alaric Bond

Kindle Edition

"I enjoy a good nautical adventure, especially when they are written as well as Sealed Orders."


(The Fighting Sail Series) 



"With news of victory at Trafalgar still fresh, HMS Hare arrives in England carrying details of yet another British naval success although the prospects for her captain, Thomas King, are less encouraging. Hare's hull requires attention and dockyard facilities are already overstretched while, if she were sent for refit, he would be unlikely to retain her command. Then a face from the past brings hope and King finds himself despatched on an urgent deep-sea mission so secret only sealed orders will reveal the final objective. Facing enemies that range from French privateers to powerful battle fleets, extremes of weather and the unpredictable behaviour of their Commander-in-Chief, the men of HMS Hare learn as much about themselves as any distant adversary and discover who their friends truly are."

I confess I came across this novel while browsing in a charity shop, so my apologies to the author as he'll receive no royalties from the purchase but... I discovered that this is the eleventh of a series, and enjoyed it so I promptly bought a couple more of the series for my Kindle, so a fair trade I think.

I enjoy a good nautical adventure, especially when they are written as well as Sealed Orders. The start, the set-up for the story, was a little somnolent, but not annoyingly so and the action soon steps up the pace. It is 1806 and the British have recaptured the Cape of Good Hope (known back then as Cape Colony). As this was the first time I had met the characters I did not know who were 'old timers' or 'newcomers' but I very quickly found my favourites. The narrative is believable, the research seems immaculate, as is the sailing detail and all very nicely written. The tension of action is superbly balanced with the everyday 'life' of the characters.

Whether it is a good idea to start at the beginning of the series would be up to personal choice, but I had no difficulty diving in at book eleven!

© Ellen Hill

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