Set in 1805, and Hornblower is both humbled and honoured in quick succession …After near disaster on board a canal barge, Horatio Hornblower is given his first assignment as Captain, taking charge of the Atropos, a 22-gun sloop that will act as flagship for the funeral procession of Lord Nelson. Soon the Atropos is part of the Mediterranean fleet's assault upon Napoleon, and Captain Hornblower must execute a bold and daring salvage operation for buried treasure lying deep in Turk waters. Under the guns of a suspicious port captain and the threat of a Spanish frigate more than double Atropos' size, Hornblower must steer his ship unscathed and triumphant…This is the fourth of eleven books chronicling the adventures of C.S. Forester's inimitable nautical hero, Horation Hornblower.
C.S Forester was born in Cairo in 1899, where his father was stationed as a government official. He studied medicine at Guy's Hospital, and after leaving Guy's without a degree he turned to writing as a career. On the outbreak of war he entered the Ministry of Information and later he sailed with the Royal Navy to collect material for The Ship. He made a voyage to the Bering Sea to gather material for a similar book on the United States Navy, and it was during this trip that he was stricken with arteriosclerosis, a disease which left him crippled. However, he continued to write and in the Hornblower novels created the most renowned sailor in contemporary fiction. He died in 1966.