In the first volume of an exciting new series, J. E. Fender displays the confident command of historical and maritime detail that readers of the Aubrey/Maturin and Hornblower series demand in novels of 18th-century naval adventure. And in Geoffrey Frost—captain, trader, and reluctant warrior—Fender has created a larger-than-life hero worthy of his British predecessors.
Just twenty-six, Geoffrey Frost is already an experienced mariner and a veteran of the China trade, but he sets aside his lucrative commercial interests to assist the American colonies in their war with Great Britain. Unfortunately, his first mission for the colony of New Hampshire—to transport some badly needed cannons captured in the Bahamas—runs afoul of British naval vessels patrolling the American coast. Commanding a ship built for cargo rather than warfare, and a crew more accustomed to fending off pirates than engaging a well-trained British naval crew, Frost reveals a flair for tactics and a coolness under fire that bodes well for his wartime career.
His own ship all but destroyed in the desperate battle off the Isles of Shoals, Frost nevertheless returns to Portsmouth with a valuable prize—the newly built, copper-bottomed, well-equipped sloop o’ war Jaguar, which he calls “the cat.” Taking command of this vessel, Frost embarks on his new career as a licensed privateer, sailing out of Portsmouth to harass British merchant ships and help fund the American cause. But first, he launches a daring rescue mission into the heart of British Canada.
With its mix of exciting maritime adventure, colorful characters, and period detail, this inaugural volume marks the arrival of a promising new series.