Skip to main content

Nautical Fiction Index

Authors McLe - Man

MacLean, Alistair (1922-1987)

HMS Ulysses. Doubleday, 1955. 316 pages

British light cruiser escorts WW II Murmansk convoys.


South by Java Head. Doubleday, 1958. 319 pages

Motley group of suspicious characters trying to escape from the Japanese advance on Singapore on a rotting tramp steamer.


Dark Crusader. Collins, 1961. 256 pages

Written under the pseudonym Ian Stuart. Published in the U.S. as "The Black Shrike". Couple on honeymoon voyage are actually agents on trail of missing scientists, end up on Polynesian island after series of disasters.


Fear is the Key. Doubleday, 1961. 264 pages

British adventurer kidnaps a girl at gunpoint and whisks her off down the Florida coast to the site of a mysterious salvage operation in the Gulf of Mexico. The search for treasure aboard a sunken DC-3 is mixed in with murder, mystery, and revenge.


The Golden Rendezvous. Doubleday, 1962. 301 pages

Tramp steamer with luxury cabins for rich folks get hijacked in gold theft with nuclear twist.


Ice Station Zebra. Doubleday, 1963. 276 pages

American nuclear sub is sent on a mission to rescue the staff of an ice pack weather station -- or at least that is how it seems.


When Eight Bells Toll. Doubleday, 1966. 288 pages

Secret agent pursuing modern pirates operating on the Irish Sea who hide their prizes by sinking them.


Bear Island. Doubleday, 1971. 273 pages

Murder among movie crew trying to shoot film 300 miles north of the Arctic Circle.


Seawitch. Doubleday, 1977. 240 pages

Industrial sabotage directed at a mobile offshore oil rig.


San Andreas. Doubleday, 1984. 306 pages

WW II medical ship ferries wounded and onboard saboteur across North Atlantic tracked by the Luftwaffe and U- boats.


The Lonely Sea. Doubleday, 1960. 221 pages

Collection of MacLean's nautical short stories dating back to his first published effort (The Dileas, 1954) that kicked off his writing career. The Dileas: Old man risks his fishing boat and crew in terrifying storm to rescue his two sons.



McLean, Allan C.

Master of Morgana. Harcourt, Brace, 1959. 222 pages

16 yr. old Hebridean lad joins a salmon fishing crew on the isle of Skye to find out who pushed his brother off of a footbridge.



McLeay, Alison

Sea Change. Simon & Schuster, 1992. 444 pages

In the 1860s our heroine, a New Orleans riverboat rat, flees to England in search of her "place" in life. The search ends aboard a fabulous yacht in the middle of the Atlantic. U.K. title: Sweet Exile.


Castaway Dreams. Amber Quill Press, 2012. 342 pages

After a lifetime in the Royal Navy, surgeon Alexander Murray knows one cannot exist without a brain, yet Daphne Farnham may be the exception. Her head contains nothing but rainbows, shoes, bonnets, pink frills and butterflies. Even her fluffy dog is useless. But the war with Napoleon is finally over and Alexander is sure he can put up with the cloth- headed Miss Farnham only for a couple of months until they reach England. But when their ship goes down, the dour doctor (after a fashion), the dizzy damsel (more or less) and the darling (and potentially delicious) doggy are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime as unlikely companions, castaway on a desert island.



McLeod, Grover Stephen (1923-2012)

Sub Sailor. Manchester, 1964. 315 pages

Seaman Ham signs onto the submarine, USS Terrapin. After attacking Japanese ships, Ham becomes a guerilla, when he is accidently left topside and forced to swim to Panay where he joins a band of Moros. For young readers.


Teodoro. Manchester, 1969. 254 pages

USN submarines in the Pacific & Philippines guerrilla operations,<


Submarine Stories. Manchester, 1977. 273 pages

Tales from a man who lived part of his life aboard American submarines in the Pacific during the WW II.


The ghost of the Chimera and The Stowaway. Manchester, 1988. 143 ppages

A bizarre, supposedly true, story of the ghost submarine, Chimera in WW II. The second story, the Stowaway, tells of two of the crewmen of Chimera, one of them a stowaway.


The Sultan's Gold : and other fleet type submarine stories. Manchester, 1988. 138 pages



MacMahan, H. Arthur

Overdue and Presumed Lost. AuthorHouse, 2000. 306 pages

The exploits of a lone WW II U.S. Navy submarine hell-bent on revenge after witnessing the deliberate sinking of an American hospital ship. USS Sailfin's relentless pursuit of the Japanese aircraft carrier whose pilots had been observed bombing the helpless mercy ship, is followed by a nighttime sea battle that "pulls out all the stops."



McMillin, Mark M. (1954- )

Captain Luke Ryan, Privateer Series:

  1. Gather the Shadowmen. Hephaestus, 2011. 300 pages

    The year is 1778 and as the brutal war between the American Colonies and Great Britain drags on, a 25 year old Irishman named Luke Ryan is the master of the fastest ship on the water, the Black Prince, and runs a very profitable smuggling trade between Dunkirk and Dublin. He and his men are indifferent to the war until one day the British seize his ship and throw his men into Dublin's Black Dog. Ryan is ruined but concocts a bold plan to break his men out of jail and to retake his ship and when his plan succeeds, the Irishmen, now fugitives and with prices on their heads, set sail for France to offer their services to an American named Benjamin Franklin.

  2. Prince of the Atlantic. Hephaestus, 2011. 340 pages

    The year is 1779 and the American Colonies are losing their life and death struggle for independence from Great Britain. Their rag-tag armies are in retreat. Their small navy has been swept from the seas. The fate of a fragile nation, the fate of the Revolution, hangs by a thread. In walks Ryan with his fast ships and iron men eager to fight the British for their own reasons. Before they are finished Ryan and his men will capture or destroy over 100 British ships, take hundreds of prisoners and invade English and Scottish towns – tying down precious military resources, causing financial panic in London and inflicting more damage on British maritime interests than perhaps any other naval force during the war.

  3. Napoleon's Gold. Hephaestus, 2011. 410 pages

    The British Navy has finally caught the brilliant Captain Ryan, a man who terrorized English ships and towns for nearly two years. Ryan is tried for treason and piracy, convicted and sentenced to hang until King George grants mercy after hearing the pleas of Queen Marie Antoinette, an admirer of the young mariner, to spare the Irishman's life. After the war Ryan returns to France but he has no money, no ship or crew and has no prospects until one day he meets an ambitious entrepreneur named Joseph Bonaparte and his younger brother, a major in the French Army, named Napoleon.



McMurtry, Larry (1936- )

Paradise. Simon & Schuster, 2001. 159 pages

McMurtry boards a cruise ship wandering among the Marquesas with a motley complement of international "island junkies" with whom he finds little in common. McMurtry doesn't complain: instead, he passes the time remarking on the national and personal idiosyncrasies of his fellow passengers, and reflecting on closeted family skeletons, feelings of marginality and loneliness, mortality, and other matters while observing the passing scene.



McNamara, George (1991- )

George and The Tricky Fish. Nuventures, 1995. 1 volume

George loves to go sailing with his family. While vacationing on the family's boat off Catalina Island, George learns how to fish, and discovers that it is not always easy. Childrens' book.


George and the Sailboat Race. Nuventures, 1995. 1 volume

George and Dad enter a sailboat race in San Diego Harbor with George as skipper and Dad as crew. Childrens' book.



McNamara, Tom (1944- )

Henry Lunt Series:

  1. Henry Lunt & the Ranger. Nuventures, 1990. 348 pages

    Rescued from British captivity by John Paul Jones, Henry Lunt serves as a lieutentant aboard the USS RANGER. Lunt is sent ashore in Belfast, to spy out the reason that HMS DRAKE is avoiding combat with Jones, discovers the ship is testing a new secret weapon (the carronade), and galls the Drake's captain into trading broadsides with Jones.

  2. Henry Lunt & the Spymaster. Nuventures, 1994. 429 pages

    Following the return of the DRAKE to France, Lunt serves with Franklin at the American Delegation in Paris. He discovers that British spies have infiltrated the delegation, and then is sent to England to re-establish contact with the "Spymaster."

  3. Henry Lunt at Flamborough Head. Nuventures, 1995. 1 volume

    Lunt serves aboard the BON HOMME RICHARD on the cruise that ends with the epic battle with SERAPIS off Flamborough Head.


Skull and Cross Bones. Nuventures, 1996. 1 volume

Pirates in the Carribean.



MacNeil, Robert (1931- )

Burden of Desire. N.A. Talese/Doubleday, 1992. 466 pages

Tells the tale of the Halifax Explosion of 1917, when a fully loaded ammunition ship blew up in Halifax harbor, and the aftermath of the disaster.



Macomber, Robert N.

Honor (Peter Wake) series:

  1. At the Edge of Honor. Pineapple Press, 2002. 280 pages

    The Civil War is leaving its bloody trail across the nation as Peter Wake, born and bred in the North, joins the U.S. Navy and arrives in Florida for duty with the East Gulf Blockading Squadron. Assigned to the Rosalie, a tiny, armed sloop, Captain Wake commands a group of seasoned seamen on a series of voyages to seek and arrest Confederate blockade- runners and sympathizers, first in Florida's coastal waters, then in a dirty and corrupt Havana, and finally near the remote out-islands of the Bahamas.

  2. Point of Honor. Pineapple Press, 2003. 327 pages

    Wake, assisted by his indomitable Irish bosun, Sean Rork, commands a larger ship, the naval schooner St. James. Wake's remarkable ability to make things happen continues as he searches for army deserters in the Dry Tortugas, discovers an old nemesis during a stand off with the French Navy on the coast of Mexico, starts a drunken tavern riot in Key West, and confronts incompetent Federal army officers during an invasion of upper Florida. It all adds to his growing reputation in the fleet as a man who engenders loyalty among the sailors of the lower deck and grudging respect from his superiors.

  3. Honorable Mention. Pineapple Press, 2004. 327 pages

    Now in command of the steamer USS. Hunt, Lt. Peter Wake quickly plunges into action, chasing a strange vessel during a tropical storm off Cuba, dealing with a seductively dangerous woman during a mission in enemy territory ashore, confronting death to liberate an escaping slave ship, and coming face to face with the enemy's most powerful ocean warship in Havana's harbor.

  4. A Dishonorable Few. Pineapple Press, 2005. 358 pages

    The United States is painfully recovering from the Civil War, and Lt. Peter Wake heads to turbulent Central America to deal with a former American naval officer turned renegade mercenary. Wake discovers that no one trusts anyone in that deadly part of the world-with good reason. As the action unfolds in Colombia and Panama he realizes that his most dangerous adversary may be a man on his own ship, forcing him to make a decision that will lead to his court-martial in Washington when the mission has finally ended.

  5. An Affair of Honor. Pineapple Press, 2006. 366 pages

    Lieutenant Peter Wake is the executive officer of the USS Omaha on dreary patrol in the West Indies. Lonely for his family, he is looking forward to returning home to Pensacola in a few months and rekindling his troubled marriage with Linda. But fate has other plans for Wake. He runs afoul of the Royal Navy in Antigua and a beautiful French woman enters his life in Martinique. Then he's suddenly sent off on staff assignment to Europe, where he is soon immersed in the cynical swirl of Old World politics.

  6. A Different Kind of Honor. Pineapple Press, 2007. 392 pages

    Lt. Cmdr. Peter Wake, U.S.N., is on special assignment as the official American neutral naval observer to the War of the Pacific raging along the west coast of South America. Chile, having invaded Bolivia, has gone on to overrun Peru and controls the entire southeastern Pacific region. Washington, concerned over European involvement in the war and the French effort to build a canal through Panama, has sent Wake to observe local events. During Wake's dangerous mission--as naval observer, diplomat, and spy--he will witness history's first battle between ocean-going ironclads, ride the world's first deep-diving submarine, face his first machine guns in combat, advise the French trying to build the Panama Canal, and run for his life in the Catacombs of the Dead in Lima, Peru.

  7. The Honored Dead. Pineapple Press, 2009. 400 pages

    Amidst exotic beauty and palace intrigue in 1883 French Indochina, U.S. naval intelligence officer Peter Wake is thrust into international events.

  8. The Darkest Shade of Honor. Pineapple Press, 2010. 404 pages

    Commander Peter Wake, of the U.S. Navy's Office of Naval Intelligence, at New York City in 1886, where he meets two intense young men who will dramatically influence his life: Theodore Roosevelt and José Martí. Presented with a secret coded message, he deciphers it for Roosevelt, and soon wishes he hadn't. Returning to Washington, he is assigned to follow up on the secret message and uncover the extent of Cuban revolutionary activities between Florida and Cuba, along with investigating rumors of Spanish government agents operating in Key West.

  9. Honor Bound. Pineapple Press, 2011. 366 pages

    Cmdr. Peter Wake, U.S. naval intelligence agent, is in Florida culminating an espionage mission to learn Spain's naval readiness in Cuba. A woman from his past shows up, begging him to find her missing son, and Wake sets off across Florida, through the Bahamian islands, and deep into the dank jungles of Haiti. His band includes a Smithsonian ethnologist, a Bahamian Seminole sailor, Russian spies, and a Polish-Haitian soldier. Overcoming storms, mutiny, and shipwreck, Wake discovers the hidden lair of an anarchist group planning to wreak havoc around the world--unless he stops it.

  10. Honorable Lies. Pineapple Press, 2012. 400 pages

    Commander Peter Wake, Office of Naval Intelligence, has been ordered to salvage his failed espionage operation against the Spanish Navy in Havana. His network of spies in the city is compromised, international political tensions are escalating, the U.S. presidential election is looming, and Wake has five days to locate and rescue two of his network who are missing and assumed captured by the Spanish. Wake immediately realizes that his old nemesis Colonel Isidro Marrón, head of the dreaded Spanish counter- intelligence service, has set the perfect trap to kill him. Wake’s covert American team of experts in linguistics, chemistry, and lock picking, are soon hard pressed to just stay alive as they struggle to carry out his hastily conceived plan.

  11. Honors Rendered. Pineapple Press, 2013. 357 pages

    Commander Peter Wake, Office of Naval Intelligence, has been given an impossible assignment by President Grover Cleveland. Cleveland doesn't want a war to be the legacy of his first term in office. Wake is ordered to get to Samoa and clandestinely accomplish one of two things: somehow prevent war from breaking out, or win it decisively at the outset to prevent it from spreading around the globe. Enlisting the help of an unlikely team found along the way — a Hawaiian artillery officer, a renegade Methodist minister, and a beautiful shyster — Wake is led into situations he never anticipated, for the South Pacific is a very dangerous place indeed. And in the end, he faces a foe more daunting than any before in his life.

  12. The Assassin's Honor. Pineapple Press, 2015. 400 pages

    In 1892 Commander Peter Wake has left the world of espionage behind and is back in the sea-going navy. But duty has called him from his new Spanish lover back to Key West to investigate an assassination and prevent another one—all of which leads him to old German foes in Mexico as well as Spanish ones in Cuba and Tampa. The life of the great patriot of Cuba, José Martí, is at stake

  13. An Honorable War: the Spanish-American War Begins. Pineapple Press, 2017. 373 pages

    Politics, love, and war swirl around Captain Peter Wake (USN) in Havana when the USS Maine explodes on a quiet evening in February, 1898. Working with Assistant Secretary of the Navy Theodore Roosevelt in the tense pre-war days, carrying out a perilous espionage mission inside Cuba, and leading a disastrous raid on the Cuban coast, Wake is in the middle of it all. This is the first of a dynamic trilogy set during the Spanish-American War in the Caribbean, when America changes forever into a global power.



Maffeo, Steven E.

The Perfect Wreck - Old Ironsides and HMS Java: A Story of 1812. Fireship Press, 2011. 382 pages

HMS Java and the USS Constitution (the famous "Old Ironsides") face off in the War of 1812's most spectacular blue-water frigate action. Their separate stories begin in August 1812-one in England and the other in New England. Then, the tension and suspense rise, week-by-week, as the ships cruise the Atlantic, slowly and inevitably coming together for the final life-and-death climax.



Maitland, Alan (Editor)

Favourite Sea Stories from Seaside Al. Viking, 1996. 322 pages

In this delightful anthology of maritime stories, we meet mermen and maids, Nova Scotia fishermen, and Stevenson's bottle imp. We visit the isle of Inishmoor, the cliffs of Connemara, and the Queen Charlotte Islands. We travel aboard a cargo ship bound for Bombay, feel the ocean spray in our faces,and discover a manuscript in a bottle.



Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Joseph Percival W.) (1908-1980)

Extraordinary Seaman. Macgibbon & Kee, 1957. 179 pages

This fictionalised account of the life and career of Captain Lord Cochrane, tenth Earl of Dundonald, is divided into ten chapters and covers the SPEEDY and the EL GAMO sea fight to his service against Spain in the Chilean and Peruvian Wars of Independence.


Very Ordinary Seaman. Gollancz, 1944. 278 pages

Written during WW II; vividly describes in fictionalised style the life on the lower deck, from joining the Royal Navy and through to service aboard a destroyer on Murmansk convoy protection duties. One of the best books of its genre.



Mandel, Paul and Sheila

The Black Ship. Random House, 1968. 371 pages

US PT boat stalks German destroyer run by the SS in the English channel during WW II.



Mangione, Jerre Gerlando (1909-1998)

The Ship and the Flame. Current Books, 1948. 311 pages

A novel about some refugees, mostly political, who escape from Europe at the beginning of the Second World War. They are stopped by a U-boat, which arrests several but one, Joseph Renner, prefers to commit suicide. When the ship lands in Mexico, their visas are found to be fraudulent and they are denied entry. Stiano Argento, a liberal professor, more actively anti-fascist since Renner's death, attempts to raise money for the bond which will enable them to land, but fails. None seem to realize the seriousness of their plight as the Captain, a Nazi sympathizer, decides to go to Casablanca where they will face death or imprisonment.



Mann, Paul

The Britannia Contract. Carroll & Graf, 1993. 443 pages

Arabs hijack the royal yacht BRITANNIA with Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip aboard during a royal visit to Saudi Arabia. The ransom demands are outrageous, so special forces attempt a spectacular rescue.



Manning, Charles

48 South. Inner Circle, 1990. 285 pages

Seven ex-Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm officers are recruited, with the British Governments approval, by Argentina to help train the Special Air Attack Group. The Group is a top secret project conceived as a means to eliminate the British Navy when it arrives in the South Atlantic in response to the Argentines proposed invasion of the Falkland Islands. In this innovative story, the Group, which incidentally has a significant proportion of women pilots, will use large numbers of locally produced, deadly, but low tech Corsair fighter-bombers to swamp the fleets defence systems. Once they have eliminated the small number of very high tech Harriers that make up the Royal Navy's air defence they would use the same tactics to destroy enough warships to force the British to relinquish their claim to the Islands. Interestingly different!