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Author: David Donachie
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pub. Date: 1st November 2010
Part of the series:
The John Pearce Naval Series
John Pearce is in London, his problems being how to pursue Ralph Barclay for perjury without his written evidence, compounded by the needs of his companions – the Pelicans, who require protections from the Press Gang. A call on William Pitt is unsatisfactory – there is no immediate prospect of a return to the Mediterranean – so he has repaired to the Pelican Tavern in the faint hope that someone will recognise him and recall the night he was pressed. If so they might remember Barclay in the mix.
While sitting in gloom, he is approached by a well-dressed and amiable stranger who engages him in conversation, one in which Pearce outlines his dilemma; to even have a chance of seeing Barclay arraigned he must have funds and even with his due prize money and pay he is woefully short of what is required. The stranger, having introduced himself as Nicholas Fairbairn, tells Pearce he may have a solution, he being an unemployed naval officer and Fairbairn being in need of a sailor … Pearce is about to embark on another high seas adventure!
'Compelling...For lovers of a sea-yarn there's plenty of salty business, both aship and ashore....The author knows his 18th-century sea lore, and it's on the ocean that the book is strongest.'Historical Novels Review