William Kinsolving Mister Christian

ISBN 13: 9781568953397

Mister Christian

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9781568953397: Mister Christian

On April 28, 1789, Fletcher Christian led a mutiny aboard HMS BOUNTY and forced Capt. William Bligh and eighteen men overboard. History tells us that the mutineers settled on Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific where their idyll came to a violent end in a native uprising. But there are numerous historical incidents suggesting that Christian was not killed and managed to escape. In Kinsolving's novel, Christian does escape, and subsequently frees a beautiful young Englishwoman, Daphne, from debauched privateers. Together they reach a deserted island where they fall deeply in love - a love that sustains them both through the worst of times that follow.

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From Kirkus Reviews:

Proceeding from the premise that Fletcher Christian, leader of the 1789 mutiny that wrested control of HMS Bounty from tyrannical Captain Bligh, did not subsequently perish on Pitcairn Island, Kinsolving (The Diplomat's Daughter, 1993, etc.) offers an immensely entertaining account of a Georgian/Regency picaro's amazing adventures. Escaping his South Seas refuge by canoe (at age 30) after a native uprising in 1793, Fletcher is picked up by a Dutch merchantman that's later sunk by a French privateer in the Netherlands Antilles. Taken prisoner aboard the pirate ship, he manages to kill the depraved captain, purloin his small pouch of large gems, and save a distressed damsel named Daphne Lewis from an unhappy fate. After spending an idyllic fortnight on a conveniently deserted Caribbean isle, Daphne and Fletcher fall deeply, lustily in love. The wealthy, widowed Daphne (who was on her way from Jamaica to England to marry an impoverished duke) is soon rescued, and Fletcher (still wanted by the British Admiralty) eventually makes it home as well. Although spurned by his family, he keeps the first of many trysts with Daphne. Fletcher is sustained by his abiding passion for her--and the proceeds from sales of the jewels he took from her captor. He serves under assumed names as an able- bodied seaman on British warships in epic battles from Camperdown (in 1797) to Trafalgar (1805). Between naval engagements, he finds time to give Daphne and her impotent peer a much-wanted male heir. Consumption takes Daphne from Fletcher in 1806, and his resultant insanity gets him committed to Bedlam. Five years later, the vengeful Bligh finds him in the madhouse, but the condemned Fletcher is reprieved at the eleventh hour by his own noble son. At the close, the fiddlefooted hero turns from the life of idle ease that could be his and heads back to sea. A grand to-the-ends-of-the-earth romp that, though merry and melancholic by turn, strikes just the right stoically mock-heroic tone throughout. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

Spanning a period of more than 20 years following the 1789 mutiny aboard the HMS Bounty, this captivating yarn chronicles the subsequent derring-do of chief mutineer Fletcher Christian. In 1810, a man languishing in Bedlam, the infamous English insane asylum, claims to be Fletcher Christian, long presumed dead. A progressive doctor allows him to write his story as a form of therapy?and so begins a rousing adventure tale as Fletcher relates how he escaped a native uprising on his South Sea island and returned circuitously to England. En route, he rescues Daphne, a beautiful duchess, from pirates, only to be marooned with her briefly on a Caribbean island. Their love keeps Fletcher returning to England after each flight from authorities, each terrible hardship abroad and forced tour at sea. England and France are fast at war, and impressment into the navy is a constant threat. Fletcher sails as a common seaman into some great battles alongside the likes of Lord Horatio Nelson, and dangerously close to his old nemesis, Captain Bligh. He also contends with pirates and is imprisoned by them for years at a time. While landbound, he is shunned by his family but befriended by his old neighbors, William and Dorothy Wordsworth, who tend to him during an illness?while their friend Samuel Coleridge supplies laudanum and picks Fletcher's brain for details of life at sea. Whenever he can, Fletcher schemes to meet with Daphne, under assumed names and a few steps ahead of a persistent Home Office detective. Kinsolving (The Diplomat's Daughter) maintains a relentless pace through all the period detail, and his clever interstitching of historical fact and wild imagination creates an old-fashioned romantic saga that is both outrageous and credible.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Kinsolving, William
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William Kinsolving
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