Beat to Quarters by C.S Forester  is a Good Book showcased in the Outpost 10F Library
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Beat to Quarters

Rating: Beat to Quarters by C.S Forester is a Good Book rated 5/5 by this reviewer.
Published: 1939
Author: C.S. Forester
Review by: CL4 the Green Knight

"The wind, the sea, and the stars to guide you."

This is a story about a man who risked his life for his country in the fight against the tyrant, Napoleon. However, this man is not a real war hero! That's right, he's a fictional character, who, after reading all of the books in the series, one would swear that he was real. Horatio Hornblower, Captain of the frigate, Lydia, sailed under sealed orders to the Pacific to help raise a rebellion against the Spanish government, who at the time were allied with Napoleon against England.

Upon arriving, however, Captain Hornblower discovers that the land owner, a Don Julian Alvarado, has taken the name of "El Supremo." Basically, El Supremo has become rather "off his rocker" you might say. Captain Hornblower has to ally himself with El Supremo and follow through with his orders of raising rebellion that will turn Spain's attention away from England and towards her own colonies in Spanish America. The following is a quote describing a surprise attack of a Spanish ship of the line by name of the Natividad:

'Now he could hear the voice of a man at the lead on board the Natividad, although he could distinguish no word. The Spaniard was coming very close. By now he could hear the babble of the Spanish crew, everyone busy talking, like every Spaniard, and no one looking out sufficiently well to catch sight of the Lydia's bare spars. Then he heard orders being shouted from the Natividad's deck; she was going about. At the very first sound he put the whistle to his lips and blew, and the whole of the Lydia sprang into activity. Sail was loosed from every yar simultaneiously. The cable was slipped, the boats were cast off. Hornblower, racing aft again, collided with the hands at the braces as the ship paid off. He picked himself off the deck and ran on, while the Lydia gathered way and surged forward. He reached the wheel in time. "Steady!" he called to the quartermaster. "Port a little! A little more! Now, hard-a-starboard!" So quickly had it all happened that the Spaniard had only just gone about and had gathered no way on her new course when the Lydia came leaping upon her out of the blackness behind the island and rapsed alongside. Months of drill bore their fruit in the English ship. The guns crashed out in a signle shattering broadside as the ships touched, sweeping the deck of the Natividad with grape. Overhead the topmen ran out along the yards and lashed the ships together. On deck the cheering boarders came rushing to the portside gangway. On board the Spaniard there was utter surprise.' (Page 57)
As you can see, this book is full of action and adventure, yet, it is also quite cunning, as the main character has a gift for mathmatics and common sense. Every decision that he makes is critized by the Lord of the Admiralty, and to find out what happens to him, the best way is to finish the whole Hornblower series. Fun, exciting, and very well-written, I recommend this book and series to one and all.

Title: Beat to Quarters
Author: C.S. Forester
Review by: CL4 the Green Knight