"Midshipman Bolitho" by Alexander Kent

We first meet our hero, Richard Bolitho on his first ship where he sails on an old two decker to the south Atlantic off the coast of Africa, there to fight against a nasty band of pirates that are praying on commercial shipping and the small men of war when they can get one. The pirates are led by a very nasty Arab that has a real grudge against the British for past wrongs. To make matters even worse, the pirates hold an island with an old fortress which the have well armed. Our young midshipman learns many lessons from the veteran hands and a good captain; lessons that will serve him well into the future. Join Richard and the crew of the 74 gun Gorgon as they deal the pirates their due.

This is really two books. The second book follows young Richard when he returns home from the Gorgon and is assigned as a midshipman (along with his best friend from the Gorgon) to his brother's cutter to try and stop a vicious gang of smugglers that are wrecking ships to recover their cargos.

Reviewed by Kenneth S. Smith, June 1999

Available from:
McBooks Press
Ithaca, New York

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