A novel of a young woman caught between the attractions of two very different men, 'Sylvia's lovers' is set in the 1790s in an English seaside town. England is at war with France, and press-gangs wreak havoc by seizing young men for service. One of their victims is a whaling harpooner named Charley Kinraid, whose charm and vivacity have captured the heart of Sylvia Robson. But Sylvia’s devoted cousin, Philip Hepburn, hopes to marry her himself and, in order to win her, deliberately withholds crucial information - with devastating consequences. The introduction discusses the novel's historical and geographical authenticity, as well as its innovative treatment of gender and human relationships. Includes a chronology, updated further reading, notes, and appendices.