Item description for The Ship by C. S. Forester...
The true story on the life on a British light cruiser on the Mediterranean during WW2.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.5" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.5" Weight: 0.9 lbs.
Release Date Jan 20, 2001
Publisher Simon Publications
ISBN 1931313172 ISBN13 9781931313179
Availability 0 units.
More About C. S. Forester
Cecil Scott "C.S." Forester, born in Cairo in August 1899, was the fifth and last child of George Foster Smith and Sarah Medhurst Troughton. After finishing school at Dulwich College he attended Guy's Medical School but failed to finish the course, preferring to write than study. However, it was not until he was aged twenty-seven that he earned enough from his writing to live on.During the Second World War, Forester moved to the United States where he met a young British intelligence officer named Roald Dahl, whom he encouraged to write about his experiences in the RAF.Forester's most notable works were the Horatio Hornblower series, which depicted a Royal Navy officer during the Napoleonic era, and "The African Queen" (filmed in 1951 by John Huston). His novels "A Ship of the Line "and "Flying Colours" were jointly awarded the 1938 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction.
C. S. Forester lived in the state of California. C. S. Forester was born in 1899 and died in 1966.
The detail, character portrayals and action are all well-written and absorbing. But I have a question. The author makes a big issue of the Royal Navy's need to protect Malta from the Italian Navy, especially when it comes to protecting the convoys it escorts bringing vital supplies to the beleagured island.
The Italians make a major effort to destroy the British escorts so they can then take on and dispatch the merchantmen at their leisure. But why wait until a well-protected convoy is about to put into harbor? Since Malta apparently did not have a standing Naval force to defend itself, the Italians could have attacked anytime they chose, perhaps to even greater effect than when a convoy is in its final approach?
I've not finished the book, so I don't know if this is ever addressed. But it seems to be a question worth asking.
Not his best....... Apr 1, 2007
I expected more from a CS Forrester novel. This is DEFINATELY not in the same league with his Hornblower or Rifleman Dodd series.
As close to being there as it possible to get Feb 22, 2007
This has to be one of the finest Novels of navel warfare. The book describes one action during WWII on board a RN Light cruiser in the Mediterranean -escorting a convoy to Malta. The action is fast paced an relentless, during the narrative Forrester takes us on a breath taking tour of the ship, meeting the individuals who man the positions, and gaining a brief glimpse of their stories and their sacrifices - how their role big or small fitted into the larger mechanism of the fighting ship. It gives a flavor of what it must have been like and whythe RN triumphed aahginst greater odds. This is a book I couldn't put down.
One of the best stories of war at sea ever written Jan 21, 2007
Cecil Scott Forester is best known as the creator of Horatio Hornblower, but before writing the "Hornblower" novels about Nelson's navy he wrote many other books, from "Death to the French" to "The Peacemaker."
This little gem, "The Ship" describes the action seen by the crew of a light cruiser in the course of an afternoon's fighting as they struggle against overwhelming odds to get a vital convoy through to Malta during World War II.
Each chapter starts with a few words from the captain's official report of the battle and then describes what this meant from the viewpoint of the human beings involved, from the captain himself down to the most junior seaman. The contrast between the dry, understated language of the official document and the suffering and heroism of the real events can be very powerful. And the amount of detail packed into the book about life on a 1940's warship is amazing.
When you read a tale of a heroic battle against impossible odds you tend to assume that the author has made up the story, but in this case you would be wrong. There was a historical battles when a squadron of of British light cruisers escorting a convoy to Malta was attacked by a much heavier force and fought back in much the same way and with the same result as in this book. (If you're interested, look up the story of the second battle of Sirte.)
Some readers may find "The Ship" a little jingoistic. On the other hand, the real men and women who stood up to the nazis and their allies sometimes had to display heroism as great as in this book. C.S. Forester thought they had something to be proud of, and so do I.
Forester wrote several novels/short story collections featuring World War II at sea: the others were "The Good Shepherd", about an American commanding the escort of an atlantic convoy, "The Man in the Yellow Raft" set on a US destroyer in the Pacific, and "Gold from Crete," most of the stories in which are set on a Royal Navy destroyer. All the others are good, but "The Ship" is brilliant.
In my opinion there are four classic novels of World War II at sea: "H.M.S. Ulysses" by Alastair MacLean, "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Montsarrat, "The Caine Mutiny" by Herman Wouk, and "The Ship" by C.S. Forester. I believe that "The Ship" is the best of the four.
A great story of naval warfare Sep 11, 2005
This is one of C.S. Forester's very best novels. I would rate it as a story as high as even the best of his Hornblower series; if one considers its literary qualities it is arguably his best book. The story of a single action in the Mediterranean fought by a single British light cruiser, it captures the intricacies of organization and teamwork that make a fighting ship. Above all, Forester makes clear, the business of naval warfare is that of flesh-and-blood men; from the lowliest seaman to the captain of the ship, all have a vital role to play--any one of them can be a hero.