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The Hornblower Companion [Anglais] [Broché]

C. S. Forester , Samuel H. Bryant


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Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5  15 commentaires
85 internautes sur 85 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 The Mental and Physical Shape of the Hornblower Plots! 22 décembre 2001
Par Donald Mitchell - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I would strongly recommend this book for any fan of the Hornblower novels.
I have written my review for someone who has read most or all of the Hornblower novels. If you have not read most of the novels and plan to, do not read the rest of this review. This review may inadvertently spoil a future story for you, although I tried to avoid doing that.
When I found this book, I did not know what to expect. I had noticed that some reviewers of the Horatio Hornblower novels seemed to have background on Forester's writing influences that I wished I had. I didn't know that those references were contained in an extended essay contained in the second half of this book, described as Author's Personal Notes, 1963, and Postscript, dated 1964. What a treat!
Mr. Forester begins by showing a page of the long hand he used to draft the books. From there, he goes on to describe the general writing process that he favored for creating his novels. Then, he turns to the origins of Hornblower in his thinking. The book becomes even more fascinating as he explains the ways he developed each of the stories in the saga. I had always wondered why he did this in such an scattered chronology, but the essay makes it clear what the purposes were behind all of this seeming haphazardness. Knowing how tight many of the scrapes are into which Hornblower fell, you will marvel at how much thinking went into developing those fascinating scenarios. Mr. Forester also keeps a running background of the world events and activities in his own life (including illnesses) that played a role in his thinking. The postscript describes the development of the plot for the unfinished final novel, Hornblower During the Crisis.
After reading the essay, I was pleased to realize that I could now understand many of the quirks in the novels. If you read the novels in order, his wife, Maria, barely exists. Yet in Beat to Quarters, you get all kinds of development of Lady Barbara as a character. Forester notes that Maria was an afterthought to an assumption that Hornblower was married in Beat to Quarters, and Mr. Forester treated poor Maria in just that way when he later wrote her in as a character.
In the novels, there are many wonderful references to the Naval Chronicle, written by ships' officers to be read by other ships' officers, seamen and their families. Little did I know that reading old editions of the Chronicle was an important part of Mr. Forester's developing fascination with creating a fictional British naval officer hero for the Napoleonic years.
In the first half of the book, you get a series of simple maps which employ the place names used in the relevant novels to locate where key events took place in each story. You can enjoy these maps while reading the novels, or refer to them to refresh your mind about the plots after you have not read the books in some time. This arrangement makes sense, so that you will not learn too much about what happens in the future to Hornblower if you read the books in the chronological order of Hornblower's fictional life, beginning with Mr. Midshipman Hornblower. The first map is an overview of all the routes of all Hornblower's fictional voyages. The subsequent twenty-nine maps go through each book in order of the action. I wish I had had these maps available while I was reading Hornblower and the Hotspur and Ship of the Line. They would have added to my enjoyment. The maps for the canal and the Thames for Hornblower and the Atropos are very interesting as well.
Where else would it help to know the lay of the land and the issues involved before launching forward? Almost everywhere, I think.
Before blundering around without a clue, be sure to check that the resources you need are not available to you!
47 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Well Worth Having 22 avril 1999
Par T. Whigham - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I consider this to be an indispensable companion to the C.S. Forester novels and the television series. It helps the casual fan of the Hornblower series to follow the action as our hero progresses along. Hard-core fans for Forester will really appreciate the details that went into making the Companion, and casual fans will develop a better sense of how things flow along in the novels.
Too bad the Naval Institute Press, one of the better publishers out there, decided to put it on backorder so soon. Hopefully, with the recent television series generating interest, the book will be re-released.
28 internautes sur 29 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Second Half Is More Interesting 11 octobre 2000
Par Terence Chua - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
This book is basically divided into two parts - the first is a series of maps showing the areas where the various Hornblower books take place, and the routes he took. The information is pretty basic, and Forester doesn't go much into tactics or anything in detail - just a straight map and some comments. The second part, though, is practically a book on the "making of" Hornblower, his writing career and his insights into his own life and that of his fictional creation. This is where the real meat is, and well worth the price on its own. You realize how much of Forester was in Hornblower - of course, this is often true of many fictional characters, but here you can see the extent of the parallels in personality. Not essential for your Hornblower collection, but well worth a read nonetheless. For those with a desire for much more detail, track down C. Northecote Parkinson's "Life and Times of Horatio Hornblower, a fictional biography which is impeccably researched and "fills in the gaps" which Forester didn't chronicle about the naval hero.
26 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A "must" for the true Hornblower afficionado. 26 novembre 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
This book has a collection of maps and diagrams representing in pictures what Forester describes in prose in the Hornblower series. Forester often described battles and campaigns in now-obscure placenames, appropriate to the era, but not always findable in a modern atlas. This serves as sort of a Historical Atlas. Also has sailing ship layouts and descriptions of Napoleanic-era technology for the modern reader. (Think of someone reading Tom Clancy in 200 years without reference material).
Book ALSO contains what is elsewhere described as "Long Before Forty", Forester's autobiographical look at becoming a writer.
16 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Essential for the Hornblower reader 22 février 2004
Par The Old Philosopher - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
On reading the Hornblower adventure novels we are taking to coves, harbors, islands, and other places where Horatio Hornblower went during his illustrious career. One of the problems one encounters is that while the geographic descriptions in the novels are pretty good, it takes a good bit of imagination to follow the adventures around the real estate. The Companion solves this problem by providing maps of each scene of action and reference points to follow. Horatio would never have put to sea without a good map, and neither should you. The last half of the Companion is the "biographer's" story of how he came to write each novel. Frequently he was on a cruise or vacation somewhere and imagined sea battles taking place where his cruise ship now leisurely sailed. It's interesting to see how Horatio's life unfolded.
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