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The Wine Dark Sea
ISBN 0786201339 / 9780786201334 / 0-7862-0133-9
Publisher Thorndike Pr
List price $18.95
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In this installment of O'Brian's maritime epic, Captain Aubrey and the crew of the Surprise are pursuing an American privateer through the Great South Sea. As is his custom, O'Brian grabs your attention with the first, beautifully memorable sentence: "A purple ocean, vast under the sky and devoid of all visible life apart from two minute ships racing across its immensity." And he doesn't relinquish it until 260 pages later, by which point Jack Aubrey is delighted at the mere fact of being alive. [via]