Flying Colours

Flying Colours

Book - 1999
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Forced to surrender his ship, the Sutherland, after a long and bloody battle, Captain Horatio Hornblower now bides his time as a prisoner in a French fortress. Within days he and his first lieutenant, Bush, who was crippled in the last fight, are to be taken to Paris to be tried on trumped-up charges of violating the laws of war, and most probably executed as part of Napoleon's attempt to rally the warweary empire behind him. Even if Hornblower escapes this fate and somehow finds his way back to England, he will face court-martial for his surrender of a British ship. As fears for his life and his reputation compete in his mind with worries about his pregnant wife and his possibly widowed lover, the indomitable captain imetierntly awaits the chance to make his next move.
Publisher: Boston : Back Bay Books, 1999, c1966
ISBN: 9780316289399
Branch Call Number: FORE 21
Characteristics: 244 p.


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Aug 21, 2015

Unlike the other books in the series, this one begins with Hornblower defeated, held captive and together with Bush, his long-time comrade in arms, denounced by Napoleon as a war criminal, scheduled to be shot. Escape appears impossible, especially with Bush being severely wounded, his foot newly lost in the last battle. Even if he should somehow manage to escape execution, he will face court martial for having surrendered his ship in the face of imminent destruction by overwhelming forces. Either way, his career appears to be at an end. A contrived and almost unbelievable stroke of luck does detract from the story but as has often been said, one has to be good to be lucky. In any case, the means by which Hornblower manages to turn disaster into triumph still makes for a great yarn.

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