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Invasion

by Julian Stockwin

Series: Kydd (10)

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13428205,205 (3.44)5
In the 10th book of the popular series, rumors fly of Napoleon's planned invasion of England, and British naval commander Thomas Kydd is sent to liaise with American inventor, Robert Fulton, who has created "infernal machines" that can wreak mass destruction from a distance. Fulton believes that his inventions, namely the submarine and torpedo, will win the day for the power that possesses them, and Kydd must help him develop the devices. Despite his own scruples, believing that standing man-to-man is the only honorable way to fight, Kydd agrees to take part in the crucial testing of these weapons of mass destruction, which just may decide the fate of England.… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
Overall I found this pretty good but in comparison to other books in this series, not as flowing. I always enjoy learning the history of the time period, things you don't learn in school, like the Fencibles in this book. Looking forward to book 12 in the series! ( )
  PallanDavid | Sep 25, 2019 |
Kidd seems to have his senses back and moves on to his usual self - striving to be part of the upper class - will it ever happen? Being a navy story, you have to be prepared to read lots of pages of how to rig sail, in all kinds of weather.
I found the last part of the book about the first submarine a welcome addition. ( )
  delta61 | Jul 19, 2016 |
Kydd certainly lived in interesting times. In this book, 10 of the series, we meet Robert Fulton, yes, Fulton of the steamboats, Priestly, Cavendish, Popham, Congreve of rocket fame, and Jane Austen's brother a navy post-captain. We follow, with interest, the development of early submersibles and we even find out why torpedoes are so named. Long gone practices like foying and hovelling are explored with the latter carrying a nice little subplot. Skillfully and interestingly, these ancient barnacles and people are woven into a neat tale about one of the lesser stories during Napoleonic times. How, did England prepare and defend against the intended invasion. It was the British Navy, this time standing fast, as did the RAF against that other Continental tyrant, Hitler, during the Battle of Britain. ( )
  jamespurcell | Nov 11, 2014 |
Nautical Fiction and especially the era of the Age of Sail, or the Napoleonic wars has long been a genre that has had many writers create long, well thought out series. Patrick O'Brian and and CS Forester are among the most well known. Julian Stockwin has his tenth adventure of Thomas Kydd, once a seaman but has passed through the ranks to become an officer.

That has set up problems before for our hero, for he does not speak like the gentry and despite thinking that he should, he constantly reverted before to his origins. Now, he has decided to not go back and in a more modern fashion hires a tutor to help him learn to speak like the upper class that he thinks his wealth has now entitled him to.

By having the hero come from the lower class, he has missed out on the training of the young gentlemen who all came from good families that aspired to command of a king's ship. Here our hero has the skill to sail well and lead, but he forgets his place too often.

He is Captain Kirk, who is constantly with the red shirts in danger. Not Captain Picard sending his number one into danger. Far too often Kydd abuses his power still so that Stockwin can look through his heroes eyes to see what his happening.

It is a fault in Nautical Fiction that authors want to have their heroes experience so many things that they put them ashore. As we students of history at the tenth book of the series could not be trusted to have some knowledge that there was an invasion fleet and force gathering in France, Kydd is sent to the Admiralty and given a briefing on it.

Wait--the Admiral's flag lieutenant would have read the man in on such information, for Kydd commands a sloop. Not even a frigate. Then while in London, well he is now rich with prize money so the Captain at the Admiralty wants to take him to a party where the king happens to pass by.

The sidekick, another factor since O'Brian had brought Martin to our attention, gets to go on a secret mission to Paris in the midst of the war. It fills out the book and we are introduced to the interlude of what this book is about, the development of modern weapons, torpedos and submarines under Robert Fulton. But we miss out on the sea.

In the year between tales, this seems a let down. Even when Hornblower was sent around the world to the Western coast of the America's it was full of action in the midst of these wars. Here I find it lacking and think this is a bridge between some of the better books in the tale. ( )
  DWWilkin | Sep 19, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Received the book in good order as an early reviewer book. Unfortunately, it is a volume that is in the middle of a series, so I wasn't really able to enjoy it all that much. I may try to go back and start the series from the beginning and re-review it.
  gtvalentine | Apr 5, 2010 |
Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
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In the 10th book of the popular series, rumors fly of Napoleon's planned invasion of England, and British naval commander Thomas Kydd is sent to liaise with American inventor, Robert Fulton, who has created "infernal machines" that can wreak mass destruction from a distance. Fulton believes that his inventions, namely the submarine and torpedo, will win the day for the power that possesses them, and Kydd must help him develop the devices. Despite his own scruples, believing that standing man-to-man is the only honorable way to fight, Kydd agrees to take part in the crucial testing of these weapons of mass destruction, which just may decide the fate of England.

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