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Nautical Fiction Index

Authors Ban - Bar

Banks, Polan (1906-1984)

Black Ivory. Harper & Brothers, 1926. 305 pages

Once upon a time there was a pirate who marauded the Gulf of Mexico. Black ivory (slaves) was his chief booty. His men were cutthroats to the last gurgle. But his diablerie was so debonair, his ruthlessness so discriminating, that the Latin citizenry of New Orleans around 1800 could not take offense when he came boldly ashore to do business with them and dance with their daughters to the wailing guitar. In 1812 the British tried to buy him up to betray his favorite port.




Barbour, Ralph Henry (1870-1944) & Holt, H. P. [Henry] (1879-1962)

Fortunes of War. Century, 1919. 342 pages

Reprinted as The Cruise of the Endeavour






Barden, Jenny

Mistress of the Sea. Ebury Press, 2012. 416 pages

Plymouth 1570; Ellyn Cooksley fears for her elderly father's health when he declares his intention to sail with Drake on an expedition he has been backing. Already yearning for escape from the loveless marriage planned for her, Ellyn boards the expedition ship as a stowaway. Also aboard the Swan is Will Doonan, Ellyn's charming but socially inferior neighbour. Will has courted Ellyn playfully without any real hope of winning her, but when she is discovered aboard ship, dressed in the garb of a cabin boy, he is furious. To Will's mind, Drake's secret plot to attack the Spanish bullion supply in the New World is a means to the kind of wealth with which he might win a girl like Ellyn, but first and foremost it is an opportunity to avenge his brother Kit, taken hostage and likely tortured to death by the Spanish.



Barker, Benjamin (1817- )

The Bandit of the Ocean; or, The Female Privateer. А Romance of the Sea. R. М. DeWitt, 184-? 115 pages

Francisco; or, The Pirate of the Pacific. А Tale of Land and Sea. Gleason's PuЫishing Hall, 1845. 50 pages

The Dwarf of the Channel; or, The Commodore's Daughter. А Nautical Romance of the Revolution. F. Gleason, 1846. 100 pages

The Gold Hunters; or, The Spectre of the Sea King. А Romance of the Sea. Gleason's Publishing Hall, 1846. 50 pages

The Nymph of the Ocean; or, The Pirate's Betrothal. А Tale of the Sea. United States Publishing Company, 1846. 50 pages

Coriillia; or, The Indian Enchantress. А Romance of the Pacific and Its Islands. Flag of Our Union Office, 1847. 50 pages

The Land Pirate; or, The Wild Girl of the Beach. А Tale of New Jersey Shore. F. Gleason, 1847. 50 pages

The Sea Serpent; Or, The Queen of the Coral Cave. А Romance of the Ocean. F. Gleason, 1847. 100 pages



Barker, Matthew Henry [pseud. The Old Sailor of Deptford] (1790-1846)

Greenwich Hospital, a series of naval sketches, descriptive of the life of a man-of-war's man. James Robins, 1826. 200 pages

The Log Book; Or, Nautical Miscellany. J. & W. Robins, 1826. 508 pages

Tough Yarns: A Series of Naval Tales and Sketches to Please All Hands from the Swabs on the Shoulders Down to the Swabs in the Head. Effingham Wilson, 1835. 351 pages

Land and Sea Tales. Effingham Wilson, 1836. 2 volumes

v.1. The Farmer's daughter -- I drink to heads -- Belvoir castle -- The great belt -- The painter of Dort. v.2. The Warlock

Topsail-Sheet Blocks; Or, The Naval Foundling. Richard Bentley, 1838. 3 volumes

Hamilton King, or, The Smuggler and the Dwarf. R. Bentley, 1839. 3 volumes

Jem Bunt: A Tale of the Land and the Ocean. Willoughby, Warwick Lane & Smithfield, 1841. 388 pages

The Naval Club; Or, Reminiscences of Service. Henry Colburn, 1843. 3 volumes

The Victory; Or, The Ward Room Mess. Henry Colburn, 1844. 3 volumes

The Old Sailor's Jolly Boat : Laden with Tales and Yarns to Please All Hands. Willoughby, 1844. 323 pages

The Fortunes of Frank Fairfield, a tale of the sea. W.S. Orr, 1845. 149 pages

Reprinted as The Four P's, or, The fortunes of Frank on his road to wealth : a tale of the sea for boys

Evenings at sea : a collection of tales. R. Bentley, 1853. 302 pages

Floating Remembrances and Sketches of a Sea Life. Whittaker, 1854. 372 pages


Barker, R. J.

Tide Child Trilogy:

The Scattered Archipelago contains very little plant life and no wood for ships, so their warships are made from the bones of sea dragons. The Tide Child is the vessel of our protagonists.


  1. The Bone Ships. Orbit, 2019. 496 pages





  3. Call of the Bone Ships. Orbit, 2020. 512 pages





  5. The Bone Ship's Wake. Orbit, 2021. 576 pages







Barker, Roland (1905- )

Jonah's Ark. Carlyle House, 1940. 288 pages

One of the last sailing ships of of New York faces hurricanes, doldrums, illness, and so forth. All is blamed on a cursed Jonah figure aboard.






Barker, Roland and Doerflinger, William (1910-2000)

The Middle Passage. Macmillan, 1939. 410 pages

Although innocent, a young Cornishman is found guilty of wrecking a ship. He escapes his sentence and joins a slaver, later becoming an important figure in the Black Ivory trade on the Guinea coast. Tiring of the misery, he returns to England and secures his freedom






Barlow, James (1921-1973)

Liner. Simon and Schuster, 1970. 443 pages

Passengers and crew aboard an ageing Greek cruise ship, heading from Tasmania for Singapore, with metal fatigue in the engine room and lifeboats corroded to the davits, encounter a typhoon.






Barnes, James (1866-1936)

Midshipman Farragut. D. Appleton, 1896. 151 pages






For King or Country; a story of the American revolution. Harper, 1896. 269 pages






Commodore Bainbridge from the Gunroom to the Quarter Deck. D. Appleton, 1897. 168 pages






A Loyal Traitor; a story of the War of 1812. D. Appleton, 1897. 306 pages






Drake and his Yeomen; a true accounting of the character and adventures of Sir Francis Drake as told by Sir Matthew Maunsell, his friend and follower. D. Appleton, 1899. 158 pages






With the Flag in the Channel; or, The Adventures of Captain Gustavus Conyngham. D. Appleton, 1902. 158 pages






The Blockaders, and other stories. Harper, 1905. 202 pages







Barnitz, Charles

The Deepest Sea. Roc, 1996. 540 pages

Viking fantasy. Deals with the late 8th Century, a raid on a monastery in 793 AD and subsequent adventures. The events, conditions and attitudes described have an unerring ring of truth to them, despite a glib though highly enjoyable 20th century style and sense of humor at places and the fantasy aspects. A top notch read.





Barney, Helen Corse (1890-1982)

Light in the Rigging. Crown, 1955. 223 pages

A young boatswain's converts to the Quakers, suffers through trials and tortures before he reaches the New World and marries the girl he loves






Barrett, Andrea (1954- )

The Voyage of the Narwhal. Norton, 1998. 399 pages

In Philadelphia in 1855, naturalist Erasmus Darwin Wells sees a last chance to make his reputation as he prepares to accompany his future brother-in-law, Zechariah Voorhees, on a voyage to the arctic in search of Sir John Franklin's lost expedition.






Barrington, E. [pseud. Elizabeth Louisa Moresby] (1862-1931)

The Divine Lady : a romance of Nelson and Emma Hamilton. Dodd, Mead, 1924. 417 pages

Made into an Oscar willing film in 1929.






Barrows, John Stuart (1865-1943)

A Son of "Old Ironsides" : the story of a boy on the United States frigate Constitution during the war of 1812, when she was "a whole navy". Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, 1931. 346 pages






Barry, John Arthur (1850-1911)

Steve Brown's Bunyip and Other Stories. Remington, 1893. 297 pages

In the Great Deep: Sea Stories. Methuen, 1896. 320 pages

The Luck of the Native-Born. J. Macqueen, 1898. 319 pages

A Son of the Sea. Duckworth, 1899. 352 pages

Against the Tides of Fate. Duckworth, 1899. 331 pages

Red Lion and Blue Star, with other stories. Hutchinson, 1902. 312 pages

Sea Yarns. W. & R. Chambers, 1910. 300 pages

South Sea Shipmates : being the matter-of-fact advent of two Australian sailormen in various seas, and on ships of varying degrees of maritime iniquity. T. Werner Laurie, 1913. 304 pages


Barth, John (1930-2024)

Sabbatical. Putnam, 1982. 366 pages

A charming book. A couple take a last sailing cruise around the Chesapeake before their child is born; sort of a sabbatical from all sorts of responsibilities, disputes, complications. Including, will they stay together? Much less convoluted than Barth's other fiction.





Tidewater Tales. Putnam, 1987. 655 pages

About a writer who's muse has gone mute due to being privy to secrets from a spook friend and not being able to talk about them. Much of the action takes place on the Chesapeake Bay.





The Last Voyage of Somebody the Sailor. Little, Brown, 1991. 573 pages

About a guy on a sailboat charter vacation who somehow gets transported to the time and place of Sinbad and the 1001 Nights. The book is quite interesting, though the sailing takes a backseat to the story-telling.





Once Upon a Time: A Floating Opera. Little, Brown, 1994. 398 pages

About a guy and his wife passing through some strange time/space warp in a squall on the Chesapeake Bay.






Bartimeus, pseud. [Lewis Anselm DaCosta Ricci] (1883-1967)

Naval Occasions : and some Traits of the Sailor-man. William Blackwood, 1914. 295 pages

Stort stories about naval life in peace and war.





A Tall Ship : On Other Naval Occasions. Cassell, 1915. 190 pages

Ten additional short stories about naval life in peace and war: Crab-Pots; The Drum; A Captain's Forenoon; The Seven Bell Boat; The King's Pardon; An Off-Shore Wind; The Day; The Mummers; Chummy-Ships; The Higher Claim.





The Long Trick. Cassell, 1917. 292 pages






The Navy Eternal : Which is The Navy-That-Floats, The Navy-That-Flies, and the Navy-Under-The-Sea. Hodder & Stoughton, 1918. 332 pages





An Awfully Big Adventure. Cassell, 1919. 277 pages

Seaways : Tales. Cassell, 1923. 308 pages

Great Security. Cassell, 1925 331 pages





A Make-and-Mend. Rich & Cowan,, 1934. 288 pages






Under Sealed Orders : a Tale of Yesterday. Collins, 1938. 256 pages






A Ditty-Box. Hutchinson, 1940. 223 pages

Action Stations. Little, Brown and Co., 1941. 262 pages

Factual and fictional sketches of naval events during WW II, including the exploits of ORZEL, ALTMARK, minesweepers and the BISMARCK.





Steady as You Go : Stories of the War at Sea. Collins, 1942. 192 pages







Barton, A. F.

Those Who Serve. John Spencer & Co., 1958. 161 pages

The story of the Royal Navy submarine TAMARANTH during WW II, from the beginning of the war until the sinking of the sub, as told from the point of view of a man who served on her as First Lieutenant and Captain.






Bartram, George [pseud. Kenneth M. Cameron] (1931- )

Under the Freeze. Pinnacle, 1984. 404 pages

US secret agent chases madman with stolen plutonium from Buenos Aires to London, Paris, Moscow and finally aboard subs under the Arctic ice pack.






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