The Yellow Admiral (novel)

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The Yellow Admiral

The Yellow Admiral is the eighteenth novel in the Aubrey-Maturin series. It was published in 1996.

The Plot

For more details about the plot, which will contain spoilers, see Summary for The Yellow Admiral

The year is 1814 and the war is winding down. Change is on the horizon for Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin. Aubrey, who has run afoul of his wife Sophie and his commander Admiral Lord Stranraer, is facing the end of his marriage, the loss of his fortune, and the end of his naval career at the same time. His ship, HMS Bellona, is part of the Brest blockade squadron commanded by Admiral Stranraer. As the story opens Bellona is being commanded by an ineffective jobbing captain while Jack is on Parliamentary leave. The crew is growing more and more restive as they watch their fellow sailors being recalled, paid off, and joining the well-paid crews of rich merchantmen. Jack is at Woolcombe preparing to fight Captain Griffiths, who has petitioned Parliament to enclose Woolcombe common. Stephen is finally happy in his marriage to Diana Villiers, with whom he is travelling in Spain. However, bad news awaits his arrival in England. For Stephen the end of the war means a return to South America and the heretofore elusive possibility of botanizing. It also means the possibility of helping Jack, whose future is not at all secure.

New Characters

Captain Griffiths who is not much of a sailor and is described by Jack as a scrub. He is Member for Carton and Admiral Stranraer's nephew and heir.

Admiral Lord Stranraer whose family name is Koop, is commander of the squadron blockading Brest and is Jack's commanding officer. He is an avid advocate of enclosure.

Harding. Huntsman at Woolcombe

Themes and Motifs

The overall theme of The Yellow Admiral is change. The world around Jack and Stephen is changing. The war appears to be over and European countries will begin to deal with peacetime. Jack has reached a crisis point in his life. He must make major life decisions which will affect his future. Stephen, too, has many changes on the horizon, although they are not so obvious at this point as Jack's.

Books in the Aubrey-Maturin Series by Patrick O'Brian

Master and Commander | Post Captain | HMS Surprise | The Mauritius Command | Desolation Island | The Fortune of War | The Surgeon's Mate | The Ionian Mission | Treason's Harbour | The Far Side of the World | The Reverse of the Medal | The Letter of  Marque | The Thirteen-Gun Salute | The Nutmeg of Consolation | Clarissa Oakes/The Truelove | The Wine-Dark Sea | The Commodore | The Yellow Admiral | The Hundred Days | Blue at the Mizzen | 21: The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey

Other books by Patrick O'Brian
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