Patrick O'Brian has written over 20 books in his famous Aubrey/Maturin series Master and Commander, and every single one is worth reading.

The Golden Ocean predates his famous series, but the writing, the naval and historical knowledge and the fine eye for characters is every little bit as outstanding as in the works to follow. In fact, although the characters and their situations are quite different from Aubrey and Maturin, writing is so similar that this work really feels like one more addition to the series.


O'Brian's characteristic writing is much more interested in charactes and their development than in plot and action. Still, he is most certainly a naval writer, because his characters are formed and characterised by the sea, their ship and the seamanship aboard of which he seems to have an uncomparable knowledge. And so there are vast passages of the novel with about as little plot development as way made good by a ship in an utter calm. And then again, there are short passages of only a few pages in which big battles are fought and lost or won before you even notice what's going on

An absolute must-read for those who felt regret as they finished the last book of the series.