Flying Colours by C. S. Forester: A-

From the back cover:
Captain Horatio Hornblower now bides his time as a prisoner in a French fortress. Even if Hornblower escapes this fate and somehow finds his way back to England, he will face court-martial. As fears for his life and his reputation compete in his mind with worries about his pregnant wife and the possibly widowed Lady Barbara, the indomitable captain impatiently awaits the chance to make his next move.

Hornblower on land! Primarily, at least. There’s a decided absence of naval adventure and battle in this one, and a lot of introspection. Thankfully, Hornblower is fascinating and complex enough for this to be an interesting prospect. He just has his moments of… boyish desperation, I guess, where I’ll sympathize with him no matter what he does.

Although things did occasionally drag a little bit in the middle, I love, love, love the ending. Forester really has a knack with these, and avoids doing anything too cliche or tidy. I shan’t give it away, but it definitely makes one want to get the next book right away without being some sort of cheap cliffhanger. Highly recommended.

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