Captain Jack Aubrey sets sail for the South China Sea with a new lease on life. Following his dismissal from the Royal Navy, he has earned reinstatement through his daring exploits as a privateer. Now he is to shepherd Stephen Maturin - ship's surgeon, sometime intelligence agent, and now unofficial adviser to His Britannic Majesty's envoy - on a diplomatic mission to prevent links between Bonaparte and the Malay princes which would put English merchant shipping at risk.The journey encompasses a great and satisfying diversity of adventures. Maturin climbs the Thousand Steps of the sacred crater of the orangutans; a killer typhoon catches Aubrey and his crew trying to work their ship of a reef; and at the barbaric court of Pulo Prabang a classic duel of intelligence agents unfold: the French envoys, well entrenched in the Sultan's good graces, against the savage cunning of Maturin.The heart of The Thirteen Gun Salute is the story of a friendship, and it is here that we have the most perfect window on the soul of that age. Maturin's unsparing, melancholy intelligence mirrors the scientific rationalism of the Enlightenment; Aubrey, bluff, competent, and endlessly courageous, embodies the fierce the fierce energy of the dawning century. Again and again the listener is refreshed by their enthusiasms and wit, their music, quarrels, and laughter.The thirteenth installment of Patrick O'Brian's hugely successful Aubrey/Maturin series.More
"The best historical novels ever written." (The New York Times Book Review)
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