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Nautical Fiction Index

Authors O - O'Co

O'Brian, Frank [pseud. B. W. (Brian Wynne) Garfield (1939-2018)]

Act of Piracy. Dell, 1975. 256 pages

A crazy captain takes steamboat from New York to California around Cape Horn in the 1850s.






O'Brian, Patrick (1914-2000)

The Golden Ocean. Norton, 1957. 285 pages

Based on Commodore Anson's voyage around the world in the 1740s.




The Unknown Shore. Norton, 1959. 313 pages

Companion to The Golden Ocean. The adventures of future admiral (then midshipman) John "Foulweather Jack" Byron and the surgeon of the storeship WAGER of Anson's fleet after she was wrecked off southern Chile.




The Jack Aubrey - Steven Maturin series:

  1. Master and Commander. Norton, 1969. 384 pages

    The first of the Jack Aubrey novels, establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, R.N., and Stephen Maturin, ship's surgeon and intelligence agent, against a thrilling backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. Life aboard a man-of-war is detailed: the conversational idiom of the officers in the ward room and the men on the lower deck, the food, the floggings, the mysteries of the wind and the rigging, and the roar of broadsides as the great ships close in battle.



  3. Post Captain. Norton, 1972. 496 pages

    "We've beat them before and we'll beat them again." In 1803 Napoleon smashes the Peace of Amiens, and Captain Jack Aubrey, R. N., taking refuge in France from his creditors, is interned. He escapes from France, from debtor's Prison, from a possible mutiny, and pursues his quarry straight into the mouth of a French-held harbor.




  5. H.M.S. Surprise. Norton, 1973. 379 pages

    Third in the series of Aubrey/Maturin adventures, this book is set among the strange sights and smells of the Indian subcontinent, and in the distant waters ploughed by the ships of the East India Company. Aubrey is on the defensive, pitting wits and seamanship against an enemy enjoying overwhelming local superiority. But somewhere in the Indian Ocean lies the prize that could make him rich beyond his wildest dream: the ships sent by Napoleon to attack the China Fleet.



  7. Mauritius Command. Norton, 1977. 348 pages

    Captain Jack Aubrey is ashore on half pay without a command—until Stephen Maturin arrives with secret orders for Aubrey to take a frigate to the Cape of Good Hope under a commodore's pennant, there to mount an expedition against the French-held islands of Mauritius and La Réunion. But the difficulties of carrying out his orders are compounded by two of his own captains—Lord Clonfert, a pleasure-seeking dilettante, and Captain Corbett, whose severity pushes his crew to the verge of mutiny.



  9. Desolation Island. Norton, 1978. 325 pages

    Commissioned to rescue Governor Bligh of Bounty fame, Captain Jack Aubrey and his friend and surgeon Stephen Maturin sail the Leopard to Australia with a hold full of convicts. Among them is a beautiful and dangerous spy and a treacherous disease that decimates the crew. With a Dutch man-of-war to windward, the undermanned, outgunned Leopard sails for her life into the freezing waters of the Antarctic, where, in mountain seas, the Dutchman closes.



  11. The Fortune of War. Norton, 1979. 329 pages

    Captain Jack Aubrey, R. N., arrives in the Dutch East Indies to find himself appointed to the command of the fastest and best-armed frigate in the Navy. He and his friend Stephen Maturin take passage for England in a dispatch vessel. But the War of 1812 breaks out while they are en route. Bloody actions precipitate them both into new and unexpected scenes where Stephen's past activities as a secret agent return on him with a vengeance.



  13. The Surgeon's Mate. Norton, 1980. 382 pages

    Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin are ordered home by dispatch vessel to bring the news of their latest victory to the government. But Maturin is a marked man for the havoc he has wrought in the French intelligence network in the New World, and the attention of two privateers soon becomes menacing. The chase that follows through the fogs and shallows of the Grand Banks is as tense, and as unexpected in its culmination, as anything Patrick O'Brian has written.



  15. The Ionian Mission. Norton, 1981. 367 pages

    Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin, veterans now of many battles, return in this novel to the seas where they first sailed as shipmates. But Jack is now a senior captain commanding a line-of-battle ship in the Royal Navy's blockade of Toulon, and this is a longer, harder, colder war than the dashing frigate actions of his early days. A sudden turn of events takes him and Stephen off on a hazardous mission to the Greek Islands, where all his old skills of seamanship and his proverbial luck when fighting against odds come triumphantly into their own.


  17. Treason's Harbor. Norton, 1983. 334 pages

    A novel of action and intrigue, set partly in Malta, partly in the treacherous, pirate-infested waters of the Red Sea. While Captain Aubrey worries about repairs to his ship, Stephen Maturin assumes the center stage for the dockyards and salons of Malta are alive with Napoleon's agents, and the admiralty's intelligence network is compromised. Maturin's cunning is the sole bulwark against sabotage of Aubrey's daring mission.



  19. The Far Side of the World. Norton, 1984. 366 pages

    The war of 1812 continues, and Jack Aubrey sets course for Cape Horn on a mission after his own heart: intercepting a powerful American frigate outward bound to play havoc with the British whaling trade. Stephen Maturin has fish of his own to fry in the world of secret intelligence. Disaster in various guises awaits them in the Great South Sea and in the far reaches of the Pacific: typhoons, castaways, shipwrecks, murder, and criminal insanity.



  21. The Reverse of the Medal. Norton, 1986. 287 pages

    Captain Jack Aubrey, R. N., ashore after a successful cruise, is persuaded by a casual acquaintance to make certain investments in the City. This innocent decision ensnares him in the London criminal underground and in government espionage - the province of his friend Stephen Maturin. Is Aubrey's humiliation and the threatened ruin of his career a deliberate plot?




  23. The Letter of Marque. Norton, 1988. 284 pages

    Captain Jack Aubrey, a brilliant and experienced officer, has been struck off the list of post-captains for a crime he did not commit. His old friend Stephen Maturin, usually cast as a ship's surgeon to mask his discreet activities on behalf of British Intelligence, has bought for Aubrey his former ship the Surprise to command as a privateer, more politely termed a letter of marque. Together they sail on a desperate mission against the French, which, if successful, may redeem Aubrey from the private hell of his disgrace.


  25. The Thirteen Gun Salute. Norton, 1989. 319 pages

    Captain Jack Aubrey shepherds Stephen Maturin - his friend, ship's surgeon, and sometimes intelligence agent - on a diplomatic mission to prevent links between Bonaparte and the Malay princes which would put English merchant shipping at risk.




  27. The Nutmeg of Consolation. Norton, 1991. 315 pages

    Shipwrecked on a remote island in the Dutch East Indies, Captain Aubrey, surgeon and secret intelligence agent Stephen Maturin, and the crew of the Diane fashion a schooner from the wreck. A vicious attack by Malay pirates is repulsed, but the makeshift vessel burns, and they are truly marooned.




  29. The Truelove. Norton, 1992. 256 pages

    UK title: Clarissa Oakes. A British whaler has been captured by an ambitious chief in the sandwich islands at French instigation, and Captain Aubrey, R. N., Is dispatched with the Surprise to restore order. But stowed away in the cable-tier is an escaped female convict. To the officers, Clarissa Harvill is an object of awkward courtliness and dangerous jealousies. Aubrey himself is won over and indeed strongly attracted to this woman who will not speak of her past. But only Aubrey's friend, Dr. Stephen Maturin, can fathom Clarissa's secrets: her crime, her personality, and a clue identifying a highly placed English spy in the pay of Napoleon's intelligence service.


  31. The Wine-Dark Sea. Norton, 1993. 261 pages

    Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin pursue an American privateer through the Great South Sea. Their ship, the Surprise, is now also a privateer, the better to escape diplomatic complications from Stephen's mission, which is to ignite the revolutionary tinder of South America.




  33. The Commodore. Norton, 1994. 282 pages

    Having survived a long and desperate adventure in the Great South Sea, Captain Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin return to England to very different circumstances. For Jack it is a happy homecoming, at least initially, but for Stephen it is disastrous: his little daughter appears to be autistic, incapable of speech or contact, while his wife, Diana, unable to bear this situation, has disappeared, her house being looked after by the widowed Clarissa Oakes.



  35. The Yellow Admiral. Norton, 1996. 262 pages

    In the spring of 1814, peace breaks out. Stephen Maturin returns from a mission in France with the news that the Chileans, to secure their independence, require a navy, and the service of English officers. Jack is savoring this apparent reprieve for his career, when he receives an urgent dispatch ordering him to Gibraltar: Napoleon has escaped from Elba.




  37. The Hundred Days. Norton, 1998. 281 pages

    On the high seas, Captain Jack Aubrey of the Royal Navy and his co-adventurer, Dr. Stephen Maturin, chase a shipment of gold destined for Napoleon. The emperor has escaped from Elba and the gold would enable him to raise more troops.




  39. Blue in the Mizzen. Norton, 1999. 261 pages

    Napoleon has been defeated at Waterloo, and the ensuing peace brings with it both the desertion of nearly half of Captain Aubrey's crew and the sudden dimming of Aubrey's career prospects in a peacetime navy. When the Surprise is nearly sunk on her way to South America—where Aubrey and Stephen Maturin are to help Chile assert her independence from Spain—the delay occasioned by repairs reaps a harvest of strange consequences. The South American expedition is a desperate affair; and in the end Jack's bold initiative to strike at the vastly superior Spanish fleet precipitates a spectacular naval action that will determine both Chile's fate and his own.


  41. 21 : The Unfinished Twenty-First Novel. Norton, 2001. 141 pages

    Incommplete at O'Brian's death. The typescript of the third chapter ends mid-sentence, but the handwritten manuscript continues on to include a duel between Maturin and a romantic rival.






The Rendezvous. Norton, 1994. 247 pages

Twenty-seven short stories (1970-74) from the humorous to the dramatic, often providing a glimpse of savage, destructive forces through the fragile shell of human civilization.





O'Brien, Brian [pseud. Albert Hayward Young-O'Brien (1898-1983)]

Scrimshaw and Sudden Death : a salty tale of whales and men. Dutton, 1959. 245 pages

Based on personal accounts and logbooks of Captain Lester A. Mosher





Windship Boy. Dutton, 1961. 256 pages

In the 1880s, 14-year-old Jonno Brown is apprenticed to the master of the clipper ship Formosa. On a two-year voyage round the world, the youth loses his landlubber's ways.






O'Brien, Conor (1880-1952)

Two Boys Go Sailing. J.M. Dent,1936. 246 pages






The Runaways. G.G. Harrap,1941. 220 pages






Atlantic Adventure. G.G. Harrap,1943. 256 pages






The Castaways. Browne and Nolan,1946. 204 pages






The Luck of the Golden Salmon. Thomas Nelson,1951. 224 pages








O'Connor, Joseph (1963- )

Star of the Sea. Harcourt, 2003. 416 pages

In the bitter winter of 1847, from an Ireland torn by famine and injustice, the Star of the Sea sets sail for New York. On board are hundreds of refugees, some optimistic, many more are desperate. Among them are a maid with a devastating secret, the bankrupt Lord Merridith and his wife and children, and a killer is stalking the decks, hungry for the vengeance that will bring absolution.





O'Connor, Patrick [pseud. Leonard Wibberley (1915-1983)]

Flight of the Peacock. Ives Washburn, 1954. 179 pages






Gunpowder for Washington. Ives Washburn, 1956. 151 pages






The Lost Harpooner. Ives Washburn, 1957. 183 pages






Treasure at Twenty Fathoms. Ives Washburn, 1961. 152 pages

Chuck Crawford is learning to dive and has a run in with a shark. Will he be able to overcome his fears or will he have to quit diving?





The Raising of the Dubue. Ives Washburn, 1964. 120 pages

Chuck Crawford joins two other divers in purchasing the salvage rights to the Dubhe, a sunken 55–foot yawl, and helps raise and restore it. Heavily autobiographical





Seawind from Hawaii. Ives Washburn, 1965. 183 pages

When the skipper is badly injured in a fall from the mast and a storm is breaking, teenaged Pete (with his younger brother) takes command.





Beyond Hawaii. Ives Washburn, 1969. 149 pages







O'Connor, P. FitzGerald [Patrick]

Mungo Starke. Norton, 1955. 118 pages

U.K. title: The Storm. The story of a Scottish fishing boat.






O'Connor, Patrick (1930- )

Across the Western. Houghton Mifflin, 1976. 182 pages

Novel, told in first-person format, of a merchant marine sailor's adventures aboard a clapped-out rustbucket, from its crossing to North America with a convoy in 1941, through its numerous breakdowns, requiring long port stays, to a climatic battle with a German surface raider on its voyage back to Britain.









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