• The Reverse of the Medal

  • Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 11
  • By: Patrick O'Brian
  • Narrated by: Patrick Tull
  • Series: Aubrey/Maturin, Book 11
  • Length: 10 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 02-05-04
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Recorded Books
  • 5 out of 5 stars 4.8 (867 ratings)

Regular price: $26.57

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Publisher's Summary

Jack Aubrey is back in London after a successful mission. On the advice of an acquaintance he uses the time to invest some of his prize money. However when the investments link him to London's powerful criminal element and land him in jail it looks as if he has lost his post captaincy and the H.M.S. Surprise. It is once again up to ship's surgeon and covert agent Stephen Maturin to rescue his hapless friend.
Don't miss the rest of the Aubrey/Maturin series.
©1986 Patrick O'Brian (P)2003 Recorded Books, LLC
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Critic Reviews

"The best historical novels ever written." (The New York Times Book Review)
"No writer alive can move one as O'Brian can; no one can make you laugh so loud with hilarity, whiten your knuckles with unbearable tension or choke with emotion. He is the master." (Irish Times)
"[Narrator Patrick] Tull's characterization of these two heroes, his mastery of dialect and his rousing reading of these dramatic sea sagas have become a standard against which all other productions of O'Brian's work must be measured.... Historical fiction doesn't get any better, and Tull's narration is 'Prime.'" ( AudioFile)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Jonathan on 01-24-08

Most Moving

Just when you thought you’d had enough of this series, around the time the man hating tattooed Polynesian gals who sailed the sea looking to deprive men of their manhood with obsidian knives showed up in The Far Side of the World, and you were positively starved for some heroic naval action, you probably gave a heavy sigh when you read the description of this book. You have also probably read of Thomas Cochrane’s career – the actual Royal Navy Captain who inspired O’Brian’s Jack - and were wincing, knowing what was coming.

Buy this book. Read it, listen to it, find some way to insert it into your brain by any manner you prefer. Despite the pain, the anguish, and the infuriating forces aligned against Aubrey, this book has the most moving scene of the series. As one O’Brian reviewer once put it, “I will not say I cried, but I will not say I did not.”

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Darwin8u on 05-20-17

When virtue spooms before a prosperous gale

"When virtue spooms before a prosperous gale
My heaving wishes help to fill the sail"
- John Dryden, The Hind And The Panther

There is a fairly exciting cat and mouse chase in this book, but for the most part 'The Reverse of the Medal' involves another Captain Jack Aubrey financial mistake. In what I'll only describe as a mix between a classic economic espionage novel ala John le Carré and David Mamet's The Spanish Prisoner, Jack Aubrey loses about everything. At the same time, Dr. Maturin is trying to take care of his friend financially by procuring the Surprise at a Navy auction all while dealing with the absence of his mercurial wife.

Without divulging too much of the plot, let me just say that one of the final chapters of this novel actually made me cry. It wasn't sad, per se, but the tears that swell up when you witness men doing manly things to help other men. Anyway, it was beautiful and touching and worth the time.

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10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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